The reamker and mask making in Cambodia
Banani Bhattacharyya (Ramkrishna Mission Institute of Culture)
Paper short abstract:
Cambodia has a long history of dance and theatre. Performances of ‘the Reamker’ date back to the 13th century.Mask making and the theatre are intrinsically linked in Cambodia. The masks transform the performers into their characters.
Paper long abstract:
Cambodia has a long history of dance and theatre. Performances of 'the Reamker' date back to the 13th century. The Reamker is a Khmer version of the classic Indian Ramayan. It is an epic poem, exploring themes of good and evil, through encounters with monkeys, giants, princes and mermaids. More than just a reordering of the epic tale, the Reamker is a mainstay of the royal ballet's repertoire. Like the Ramayana, it is a philosophical allegory, exploring the ideals of justice and fidelity as embodied by the protagonists, Prince Rama and Queen Sita.. Mask making and the theatre are intrinsically linked in Cambodia. The masks transform the performers into their characters. In the past it was common for artists to make their masks and perform. The finished theatre masks are sacred and are treated with respect.
Visuality, connectivity and sustainability of cultural heritage of Cambodia