I am missing the stimulation of being in Malaysia and Indonesia, with the range of traditional performance on offer, but have been enjoying attending a London puppet festival over the last week. I am reviewing some of the shows for Animations Online, an online puppet magazine I edit, and also attending a number of seminars.
I have also been checking out various web materials. For example, I read a fine New York Times article published in 2002 on Jlitheng Suparman and Slament Gundhono's experimental wayang work, titled Political turmoil gives new life to Indonesian shadow play : Out of the shadows, a new art. I also saw some nice material from Jlitheng on youtube, including a clip of a sexy dangdut singer puppet and another one showing the same dangdut singer plus a Rhoma Irama type singer-guitar player from the puppet side of the screen (HEBOH DANGDUT GLOBAL WARMING WAYANG KAMPUNG).
A colleague from Australia pointed me to a really fine clip of Wayang Ceng Blok - a popular Balinese wayang company - with a long non-verbal sequence showing various animals at play. Check it out here.
Another friend from New York also told me about a robotic Balinese gamelan in New York,called Gamelatron, which has an interesting website featuring some performance vids and a brief television segment on them. Check out their website at http://gamelatron.com/