Once again Bali Spirit Festival has brought music, performances, and all kinds of tribal happenings from around the world to Ubud. Here’s a little slice of what we saw, and a word or two from Robert Weber:

“In my mind the the most important thing is that as we grow we maintain a sense of that when you are at the festival that you really are a part of it, you’re not just a consumer. The idea is that you are really connecting with the community, with an energy larger than yourself rather than just going to a shopping mall or a convention. The biggest challenge this year was setting up the new venue (for the day time activities, (but for the evenings) we absolutely love ARMA. It’s an amazing facility.


In terms of the music, we haven’t looked at a situation where we’ve had sell out yet, and what that means is as we grow, we have to think about growing bigger or growing better. There are some festivals that limit the number of tickets in order to preserve quality , this is by design – it’s in their DNA. We haven’t had that conversation yet. We haven’t had the issue yet. There isn’t the desire in the team to pump it up crazy big, we want to make it the highest quality we can. I would like it continue to be an event where people feel they can connect more rather than just be consumers.”

Robert Weber (©Rio Helmi) below: scenes from the Sacred Cacao Ceremony on Thursday night (photos ©MatthewOldfield, including feature photo)






And then there was a local Barong Berutuk performance with a few asides (©Matthew Oldfield)


On other nights the ARMA stage hosted Kayah from Poland (photos ©Rio Helmi) and adoring fans





Lively performances from the Hands Percussion group from Kuala Lumpur (©Matthew Oldfield)


The Dafra Kura Band’s Olivier Tarpaga got people up from the crowd onto the stage doing African dance (photos ©Rio Helmi)






A rapper from Europe whose name eluded the photographer but whose game a little girl got (©Rio Helmi)



And on the final night were two big favourites, firstly the multi feathered, tribalistic Australian Deya Dova and entourage, plus adoring fans (photos ©Rio Helmi)







and in the interludes on the second stage there were moments of sublime calm, here brought to ARMA by the beautiful voice of Sandrayati Fay (©Rio Helmi)


And whole affair run from a bamboo hut, Antida Music’s HQ during the show  (©Rio Helmi)



Then finally, the top billing: Nako and Medicine for the People!!  Tight band – talented and passionate boys this crew. (photos ©Rio Helmi)












And a brief guest appearance by Fantusi…


And then it’s time for the final number. After wonder-woman Meghan Pappenheim calms things down a little, and takes herturn on stage to give all the sponsors a big shout out.


See you in 2017!