Denpasar, Bali (ANTARA) - The COVID-19 pandemic is likely to be behind the recent rise in the number of street performers at Bali's main intersections, Wahyu Budi Nugroho, a sociologist from Udayana University, has opined.

"The pandemic is compelling residents, who have lost most or even all of their income, to do anything for their living, including by performing at intersections as road artists," Nugroho said in Denpasar, Bali, on Monday.

The presence of street performers wearing traditional attire has provided an opportunity to reintroduce traditional arts and culture that have seen a decline, particularly during the pandemic, he added.

"We should see their presence in a positive outlook. They might be just want to popularize traditional arts amidst the pervasive trends in television, social media, or online movies that lack traditional performance," Nugroho remarked.

If the street performers, who are mostly in their youth, can be managed properly, they could serve as a new tourist attraction on the island, he said.

Nugroho suggested that a street performers' association be established to organize and accommodate street performers and avoid possible conflicts between artists or with local residents.

"We could see music artists at Malioboro Street, Yogyakarta, are organized, as they utilize uniform traditional musical instruments and wear traditional attires of cap and batik," the sociologist noted.

Earlier, Bali Municipal Police head Dewa Nyoman Rai Dharmadi had confirmed that an increasing number of street performers have begun to perform at Bali's main intersections daily.

"We have cooperated with the regional social affairs office that has consented to conceive a training program for the street artists by providing instructors and training facilities, as directed by the governor, but our challenge right now is to persuade the road artists to join our program as they have repeatedly refused the offer," Dharmadi said.

Despite arousing different opinions among Bali residents, the presence of street performers ought to not cause problems as long as they cooperate with the authorities, the municipal police head stated.

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Translator: Ayu Khania P, Nabil Ihsan
Editor: Sri Haryati
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