Our very first workshop was at a unique institution called Saanggar Seni Dan Budaya Tunjung Nyaho.. More commonly known as ‘Charlie’s Gallery’, the place acts as a training ground and hub for traditional Dayak dance and music, and is run by the one and only Charlie, pictured below.
The walls were lined with tall Dayak feather head dresses and the rooms were filled with musical instruments, traditional tunics made from beaten bark, scary Sababuka masks and sparkling costumes. The ubiquitous hornbill that was highlighted at the museum again appeared, as centrepiece for the head dresses. We were treated to some brief demonstrations of music and dance, very rich and unique to this part of the world.
The workshop was a riot. Filled with creative people, there was so much scope for wild and wacky scenarios and expression. We had so much fun working with mime, movement, object theatre & puppetry. Passers by must have been wondering what all the commotion and hysterics were about! It was so much fun, and we look forward to working with the participants further in the final big production.
A special treat at the end – at Charlie’s insistence, Shani & Matina submitted to getting a make-over, Dayak couture! This in turn attracted a parade of studio residents and school girls posing for selfies. What a great start to the workshop program!