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Photographer's Note

I attended an outdoor drama performance in a temple in Karambitan village a couple of nights ago. Drama is as an integral part of Balinese culture as dance, and the two are often intertwined in temple ceremonies.

This is Rangda - one of the two main characters in the barong play. Rangda is a child-eating demon queen who leads an army of evil witches against the forces of good.

She is said to haunt graveyards, feed on corpses, and at night fly through villages, trailing her entrails, trying to find pregnant women to suck their babies' blood.

As we were watching the drama performance, a group of local kids were sitting on the ground close to the action, but when Rangda appeared, they all ran away!

Part of the performance featuring Rangda was presented with the lights off, and I wondered whether some of the kids might be having nightmares that night.

(Note to Tan [capthaddock] – this is what you’d be dreaming if you had eaten any of those mushrooms on the Gili Islands).

No flash photography was allowed during the performance, so this was shot at ISO-1600.

I’ve posted a wide shot of the temple courtyard where the performance took place in the Workshop here
– just after Rangda had ‘killed’ a couple of the good guys (they were later resuscitated with holy water).

The Workshop post is a more traditional travel photo, but as it is quite noisy from the high ISO, I thought this close-up of Rangda (cropped from a 120 mm focal length shot) would make a better main post.

riclopes, kiwi_explorer, capthaddock, plimrn has marked this note useful

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Additional Photos by David Astley (banyanman) Gold Star Critiquer/Gold Star Workshop Editor/Gold Note Writer [C: 1237 W: 108 N: 2568] (7789)
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