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Center for Southeast Asian Studies > Projects > Indonesia: Arts & Culture > Wayang Listrik Educational Outreach

Wayang Listrik Educational Outreach

Balinese Wayang Listrik in Hawaii’s Schools in Spring 2020

Welcome, and Selamat Datang! CSEAS and the UH Mānoa Asian Theatre Program, along with 2019-2020 nonprofit partner Arts Focus Southeast Asia (AFSEA, a 501(c)(3) organization created to support Southeast Asia art initiatives), are pleased to bring Wayang Listrik to the children and youth of Hawai‘i. Wayang Listrik is a modern Balinese theatre genre based on traditional shadow puppetry (wayang kulit) with accompanying dance and music, all transferred to a large 30 x 15 foot screen. Check out the free resources and content below!

2019-2020 Teacher Resource Guide downloadable PDF

Full documentary of the 2015-16 project produced by CSEAS

To check out our outreach team’s visit to the garden isle of Kaua’i, go here.

2019-2020 School Outreach Flyer

2019-2020 Teacher Resource Guide

Downloadable PDF

About the Spring 2020 production: The Last King of Bali

The story of the “Last King of Bali” is taken from the Babad Dalem – a semi-historical text chronicling key events in Balinese political history surrounding the lives of Balinese kings, often blended with legends and myths. One famous late 17th century account tells the story of Dalem Dimade, son of the famed Dalem Waturenggong, who reigned from the Klungkung regency, during  a period considered to be the “Golden Era” of Balinese history.

View of Mt. Augung (Bali), from Nusa Penida

The story begins in Nusa Penida, a small neighbor island off the Klungkung coast. A traditional Hindu ceremony was violently disrupted by the overlord of the small island, Dalem Bungkut, as a sign of rebellion against Dalem Dimade. The village head of Nusa Penida travels to the main island of Bali to request the assistance of King Dalem Dimade and his most trusted minister I Gusti Ngurah Jelantik Bogol along with Bogol’s wife Ni Gusti Ayu Kaler to drive out the ogre king Dalem Bungkut and restore peace once and for all. Will the revered last king of Bali triumph over the evil and powerful demon king?

The plot offers an exciting feast for the senses, ranging from scenes depicting ideal love and loyalty, to dramatic battle scenes replete with intrigue and unexpected turns — all brought to life on a large 30’ x 15’ screen through shadow puppetry, stylized acting, dance, and original live Balinese gamelan music. Comic relief and narration of the ensuing confrontation is provided by the beloved punakawan or clown characters.

This famous story has traditionally been told through the Balinese topeng or mask dance genre. This production will be the first time that it is adapted for the contemporary wayang listrik theatre genre. Balinese guest master artists I Ketut Wirtawan, I Madé Moja and I Madé Widana, along with the Asian Theatre Program’s very own Kirstin Pauka and Annie Reynolds will work with theatre, music, and dance students to put together another other-worldly performance for this Hawai‘i and world premiere.

Kennedy Theatre’s MainStage Performance Information

The production had a week-long run, attended by full-house audiences for multiple nights. More information about The Last King of Bali performance can be found at the Kennedy Theatre website. Watch the full show on our Vimeo channel here.

  • Fri., Feb 7, 7:30 p.m. (Opening Night)
  • Sat., Feb 8, 7:30 p.m.
  • Sun., Feb 9, 2:00 p.m.
  • Wed., Feb 12, 9:00 a.m. (School Show)
  • Thurs., Feb 13, 9:00 a.m. (School Show)
  • Fri., Feb 14, 7:30 p.m.

About the 2015-2016 Wayang Listrik Project: Subali-Sugriwa: Battle of the Monkey Kings

In Spring 2016, a Wayang Listrik performance ran at Kennedy Theatre at UH Manoa. The show came alive with traditional carved leather puppets, shadow-actors, dancers, and gamelan music. The production ran from January 22 to 31 and featured a brand new script by Balinese master artist Ketut Wirtawan based on the Sugriwa-Subali episode of the classical Hindu text Ramayana.

We also had a special school show on Thursday, January 28, 2016 to which we invited K-12 students from local Oʻahu schools. Prior to this special performance, workshops were held to demonstrate important aspects of Wayang Listrik and Balinese performance, so that the students would have the background to understand and enjoy the full performance.

2015-2016 Outreach Activities

Leading up to the January 22 – 31, 2016 production of Wayang Listrik at the Kennedy Theatre, the outreach component of the project brought activity-based mini-performances and “play”shops on Balinese gamelan music, dance and shadow puppetry to Hawaii’s schools, starting in Spring 2015. We partnered with the Pacific Asian Affairs Council to run a crowd-sourced fundraiser to try to expand the reach to more schools (watch the fundraising video here). We also executive produced a documentary film on the entire production process, available for free on our Vimeo channel.

Supporters and Sponsors

THANK YOU to our individual supporters who have contributed via our community partner’s campaign:

Eric Chang
Mary Chang
Ross Christensen
Kim Cobb
Margaret Coldiron
Sue Cowing
Randall Cummings
Kenny and Chizuko Endo
Rea Fox
Mary-Jo Freshley
David Furumoto
Selina Higa
Donald Huang
Gabriel Ishida
Meredith Lee
Evelyn Leong

Lynne Mayeda
Gilbert Molina
Yee Man Mui
John Nakagawa
Dee Nishimura
Patrick Oiye
Noel Okimoto
Benjamin Pachter
Rohayati Paseng
André Pauka
Maryll Phillips
Eddy Pursubaryanto
Deborah Pope
Indra Ridwan
David Robertson
Joan Scanlan

Bonnie Showers
Jonathan Sypert
Hiroshi Tanaka
Robin Tatu
Beth Tillinghast
Kelley Toor
Stephen Tschudi
Valerie Vetter
Laureen Watanabe
Paras Williams
Anna Womack
Frances Wong
Jasmine Yep
Susan Yuen

THANK YOU to our wonderful institutional sponsors whose contributions make this program possible:

UH Mānoa Chancellor’s Fund for Asian Theatre
UH Mānoa Music Department
UH Mānoa Office for Diversity, Equity, Access, and Success
Norma Nichols School Outreach Fund
Our advisors Larry Reed, I Madé Sidia and I Madé Redha
And the following organizations:

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2015-2016 Teacher Resource Guide

As part of the Wayang Listrik outreach we developed a research guide. Any K-12 teacher wishing to bring the art of Balinese performance to their classroom may download and use it! It is available in PDF form via the link above as well as in the viewport below.

Common Core and Hawai‘i Content & Performance Standards Connections

Click on the relevant link(s) below to view how our outreach activities align with state standards for K-12 (look for the yellow highlights).