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The University of Hawaiʻi at Mānoa’s Department of Theatre and Dance presents the world premiere of Subali-Sugriwa: Battle of the Monkey Kings, Balinese wayang listrik (shadow theatre). The show is directed by Professor of Theatre Kirstin Pauka, in collaboration with three master artists from Bali, Indonesia. It will be presented on the mainstage at Kennedy Theatre. Performances will take place January 22, 23, 29, and 30 at 7:30 p.m. and January 31 at 2 p.m.

The story of Subali-Sugriwa: Battle of the Monkey Kings is based on a section of the famous Hindu Ramayana epic and has been adapted specifically for the UH Mānoa Asian theatre production by renowned Balinese master artist Ketut Writwan. It was translated to English by UH Mānoa Asian theatre PhD candidate Annie Reynolds.

In this play, a powerful demon wants a beautiful goddess for his wife. Legendary monkey brothers Subali and Sugriwa are enlisted to help the gods repel the demonic suitor’s armies in a story told through wayang listrik, a modern Balinese theatre genre that blends shadow puppetry (wayang kulit), dance, acting and live gamelan music.

Utilizing a giant 30 by 15 foot screen, the ensemble will use traditional carved leather puppets, shadow masks, hand-painted transparencies and special effects to tell this magical story through acting, music, dance, light and shadow—a show suitable for the whole family.

performers on stage

From left, Qiaoer Zheng, Joanna G. Mills and Hunter Kaye perfrom in Kennedy Theatre’s Balinese wayang listrik production, Subali-Sugriwa: Battle of the Monkey Kings. (photo by Chesley Cannon)

For more about the production, go to the Kennedy Theatre Subali-Sugriwa: Battle of the Monkey Kings website.

Ticket information

Tickets for Subali-Sugriwa: Battle of the Monkey Kings can be purchased online at www.eticket­­­­, by phone at (808) 944-2697, at official outlets and at the Kennedy Theatre Box Office during sale periods only.

  • $25 general admission
  • $22 seniors/military/UH faculty and staff
  • $20 UHAA
  • $15 students
  • $8 UH Mānoa students with validated spring 2016 UH Mānoa photo ID

Ticket prices include all service fees. For more information, visit the UH Mānoa Department of Theatre and Dance website.

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