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Gamelan Haiku, A Hundred Gourds 4.2

gamelan workshop

the politician

takes off his eyeglasses


Ken Sawitri (Indonesia)

Published or the 1st time in A Hundred Gourds 4.2 on March 1st, 2015
Selected by Lorin Ford

Vandaluna Media

By Maria Bakkalapulo – story first published in Songlines in 2007.

Tonight, tucked deep in the heartland is a performance by one of Bali’s most popular wayang kulit – or shadow puppet theater troupes known as Cenk Blonk. With rarely a day off, Cenk Blonk’s theatrical road show always creates traffic jams wherever they set up their screen for the night.

Wayang Kulit is considered one of the oldest forms of story telling in the world. The popularity of these shows in Indonesia, though, has dwindled compared to other forms of entertainment, such as television and video games. Cenk Blonk proves that this traditional art can still draw a huge audience with its mixture of humor and social commentary, especially in the countryside.

It is easy to get lost on the bumpy un-lit roads slicing through endless stretches of rice fields in the rural district of Tabanan, where access to…

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