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What to Expect on April 16

Ki (pronounded “kee”—Master) Midiyanto, who has lived in the U.S. for many years, will be performing most if not all of the dialogue in English. He will be singing songs in Javanese, and will probably also include brief spoken parts in Javanese as well, but it is not necessary to understand either of these in order to follow the story and enjoy the show.

The story and other content are aimed primarily at adults, but, as in Java, children of all ages are welcome to attend—there’s something for everyone to appreciate, and it is highly unlikely that any of the content will be inappropriate for children. In Java there are often dirty jokes, which, for the most part, simply go over the heads of the children present. The humor in our performance might refer to politics and other things of primary concern to adults, but will otherwise be “safe” for kids. The atmosphere at a wayang performance is usually fairly relaxed by Western concert standards, which also makes for a child-friendly atmosphere.

Given the semi-improvised nature of wayang, it is impossible to predict exactly how long the performance will last. In Java, as previously mentioned, most performances are still about eight hours long, although abbreviated versions one to two hours long are not uncommon. Ours is likely to be between two and two-and-a-half hours in length, without an intermission. But we will leave the doors open and people can come and go, as they would at an outdoor performance in Java. And while in the recital hall, audience members will be free to circulate around the room, observing from the gamelan side or the shadow side as they wish, taking care not to block the views of others.

We will provide floor mats for guests to sit on, as in Java, and chairs around the periphery (as well as some open spots for wheel chairs—please consult the ushers), for those who find it uncomfortable to sit on the floor. We ask that all those wishing to sit on the floor remove their shoes before entering the room. We will provide shelves for shoe storage.

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