APEX Trip Report 2: Vientiane, Laos (19-25 April 2012)

The second leg of the ASEAN Puppetry Exchange (APEX) trip was in Vientiane, Laos. This was an interesting (and tiring) trip as Frankie had the task of training 15 adults and youths from the Vulnerable Youth Development Association’s Jampalao puppet troupe. He conducted a five-day puppet-making and performance workshop, culminating in a puppet performance of the classic Lao text, Sinxai, by the group. The enthusiastic group made 6 brand new puppets, rehearsed and staged the performance within the short time frame, which was no small feat, to say the least.

Frankie also performed in three schools: the Udom Phon Primary School (20th April), Xai Settha Secondary School (23rd April) and Tha Ngon Village Primary School (25th April). The open-air shows were warmly-received by the crowds amidst the hot weather, many of whom have never seen a string puppet before. Frankie had to improvise when some of the venues didn’t have amplification/electricity, but it was well worth the effort to share his craft with his new friends.

Workshop for the Jampalao Puppet Troupe

The Completed Puppets

The Team from Jampalao Puppet Troupe with their new puppets

Open-Air Performances at Schools

With Some New Friends

This trip is presented in partnership with Artsolute Asia with the support of the Singapore International Foundation. 

With special thanks to: