|Director Koryu Nishikawa with two singers and samisen player|
The Hachioji Kuruma Ningyo folklore puppet company is a team, depending on more than puppets and puppeteers. The singers, who sit on a platform, give voice to the puppet characters. Meanwhile, the twanging, rhythmic samisen sends signals to the audience.
The main part of the evening was a two-course event: the first a play about a jilted maiden who turns into a giant sea serpent worked by three puppeteers, the other a comic piece with a pair of characters reminiscent of Don Quixote & Sancho Panza.
|The puppetmasters are always visible, sitting on rolling boxes behind the puppets|
Puppeteering is not for sissies. Years of practice underlay the success of this ninety-minute show. .