A lovely reminder for all of us, from my friend Annie, the Shadow Puppeteer:
“Perhaps a hundred years ago, when the audience was lagging due to competing forms of entertainment, some masters came to believe the same things I do now – which is the beauty of live performance is making magic within the limitations: invisible budgets, bad acoustics, gravity, etc. And perhaps there is also magic inherent in the cogs that make that magic happen. To expose those cogs is to embrace and celebrate these limitations, making them precious and valued again.”
I’ve been back home for over two months now. And while I feel a longing for the shadow puppet trail, I’ve also been able to do a different kind of searching here in America. It’s calmed my anxiety about the trail running cold or me losing my steam. This time of processing and pondering is necessary to get to a more fulfilling continuation of the work.
Diving further into historical research while simultaneously building new work for the shadow theatre with my Chinese shadow training, has gotten me caught in some in some swirls of cyclical discovery and impossible intersections. Sometimes, there is no way to gracefully integrate the old with the new. Sometimes, it happens naturally.
My fascination with Chinese shadow puppetry has as much to do with what is presented as how it is presented.
The traditional countryside performances are the center of community celebrations and usually took…
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