Shadow Princess: An Indonesian Story

Shadow Princess: An Indonesian Story

by Tamara Fielding, Cindy Marvell


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Cindy Marvell and Tamara Fielding examine tragedy, triumph, and the sweetest things in life through a young girl's unexpected immersion in shadow puppetry. An inventive, character-driven story with endlessly imaginative action, Shadow Princess: An Indonesian Story is the sort of book that changes how readers look at the world as well as their place in it. With knowledge of geography, mythology, and the ancient art of Indonesian "Wayang Kulit" shadow puppet theatre, the authors transcend our timeless search for human connections to a place where mystical wonderments offer limitless possibilities.

On the Indonesian island of Sumatra, alongside talking animals and forest spirits, Tumbuh lives a typical Indonesian life until one day things change. Her grandmother whispers ancient Javanese myths of kings and queens and ogres centered on Wayang Kulit puppet plays, and Tumbuh's father retells the tale of how a tiny snail, named Siput, outwits the clever Chevrotain mouse deer, Kancil. Both come into play when a tsunami strikes and Tumbuh loses her entire family to the sea, and she suddenly knows that retelling their story may be the only way to free her parents from captivity and to save Sumatra's rain forests. The Dalang, a shadow puppet master, shares a floating box with the stranded girl as she goes to meet the reclusive Banda Aceh Dalang, whose power she's convinced dovetails with her own. Over the course of the book's forty three chapters, Tumbuh and her friends have run-ins with countless rebels and marauders. Until she learns to perform the Indian version of a traditional Wayang Kulit saga, she'll have no control over the final act-and the show must go on. Through the stories of Wayang Kulit puppet plays, readers learn about responsibility, loyalty, camaraderie, and what it means to be brave.

Product Details

ISBN-13: 9781452899886
Publisher: CreateSpace Publishing
Publication date: 12/02/2011
Pages: 240
Product dimensions: 6.00(w) x 9.00(h) x 0.51(d)

About the Author

TAMARA FIELDING is a Dalang, a Shadow
Master of Javanese Wayang Kulit puppet theatre. Born to Dutch and Indonesian parents on the island of Java, Tamara grew up on her family's rubber plantation where she first saw a night-long Wayang Kulit performance. After World War II and the Indonesian revolution, Tamara's family fled to Holland.

Tamara's childhood memories of her Indonesian roots and culture set her to pursue an acting career. She studied drama in Paris and was cast in American motion pictures filmed in France. Following her lifelong dream, she immigrated to the United States where she settled in New York, married, and began a family. She rekindled her native art of Wayang Kulit with some puppets that she inherited, which culminated in her one-woman show TAMARA and The Shadow Theatre of Java. Tamara's performances have been presented on cruise ships, at international festivals, museums, universities and schools throughout the United States, Europe, and Indonesia. Once profiled by Cindy Marvell in The New York Times, the idea was born to co-author Shadow Princess - An Indonesian Story. Tamara lives in Northport, New York with her husband Maxwell and has two children and four grandchildren.

CINDY MARVELL has been performing as a juggler since her childhood. After graduating from Oberlin College with honors, she became the first woman to win the International Juggling Association's Championship. She has performed solo in Nagasaki, Japan and with a touring show in Hong Kong, Taiwan and Singapore. She has also toured with San Francisco's Pickle Family Circus. New York credits include Bouncing Back at Dance Theater Workshop, Ladyfingers at Lincoln Center Out-of-Doors, Cirque Eloize at the New Victory Theater, Sesame Street, and the N.Y. Renaissance Festival. She has been a member of the Lazer Vaudeville since 1994 and is married to hoop juggler Carter Brown. Marvell writes about her field for The New York Times, JUGGLE, and Spectacle Journal for the Circus Arts. Her DVDs include A Juggling Journey, Lazer Vaudeville Off Broadway, and Trailblazers: Women Who Juggle. She is co-founder and artistic director of the Boulder Circus Center. She is married to hoop juggler and technologist Carter Brown and has a son, Theo.

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