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Visit Nang Talung, Shadow Puppets Theater (Phatthalung)

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Nang Talung, Shadow Puppets Theater

Thai name : หอศิลป์ หนังตะลุง

GPS : 7.599548, 100.062416 (See on the map)


Nang Talung is a traditional shadow puppet theater found mainly in the provinces of Songkhla, Nakhon Si Thammarat and Phatthalung, which is said to first appear in Thailand in Phatthalung province. Each province has its characteristic style that is recognizable by the morphology of the characters and the details of the decorations of the clothes or the hair. Nang means leather (leather puppet in this case because they were made from buffalo leather and now with cow leather) and talung is an abbreviation of Phatthalung. You will find in the province several masters who make figurines and offer shows. I put the GPS coordinates of Khun Lek's place, the one I went to see. it is 4 kilometers out of Phatthalung city. He took of his time to show me in detail the process of making puppets. It was really interesting, I stayed over an hour. But as he only speaks Thai, you will need to come with a local guide for translation, if you speak English, I recommend you to contact Pui Fai Wong through her Facebook profile. There is also a part with a little museum with Nang Talung characters from the 3 provinces.

As said, there are other workshops like this, like Bang Kaeo Shadow Puppet Figure and Handicraft Center or Hor Silp Nang Talung Thailand. But I think that everywhere you will need to come with a Thai guide to translate.

Practical information about Nang Talung, Shadow Puppets Theater

Admission is free but I gave him a little tip at the end.
Apparently, there are often Nang Talung shows at Khun Lek on Saturday night. No exact time, they wait for the audience to fill but it is around 7-8 pm, he said. Of course the show is in Thai.

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