Balloon mould mask-making
You may wish to make a mask based on one of the characters in Activity 2. Follow these simple instructions:
- Blow up a balloon and hang it from a string.
- Build up six layers of papier mâché on the front surface of the balloon. As the layers develop, a pear-shaped mask forms.
- Cut the balloon down and build up the mask's features using rolls of glued paper and papier mâché squares.
- Pop the balloon and trim the base of the mask. Sandpaper the rough edges and apply a coat of white interior paint. Paint the surface according to the character you wish to create. Add hair and other adornments if necessary.
(Kakshi, the bride, enters dressed in a long red skirt and a green cropped top, standing on somebody's shoulders. To the accompaniment of drums, she dances around with a long white scarf draped around her shoulders. This is supposed to encourage the audience to donate to the actors.)
(Two Chuji, fighting lions, enter. The lion is a supreme creature in Buddhism. This scene is essential to the mask drama in order to purify and exorcise the evil spirits from the performance. The lions fight each other and both fall down. Choraengi, a scatterbrained young boy, enters and chases them away.)
(Paekchong, the butcher, enters with a large straw bag slung over his shoulder. He dances around to the music and is full of good humour. A big brown ox dances in and they dance together. Paekchong then kills the ox. He hacks away at the ox and then stands up.)
(Paekchong holds up a red object high in the air.)
Paekchong: Who wants to buy an ox heart? Look! It's still warm. Eat it like this, and weaklings will become strong, and dizziness will disappear. Nobody wants it? Huh, these people, fancy not knowing the value of a fresh ox heart.
(Halmi, a poor granny, enters, bent over her broom. She is shabbily dressed and her hair is covered with a scarf. She sweeps for a while and then stands upright, stretching her doubled-over back.)
Halmi: Oh, my back! It's killing me. Listen, folks, have you ever seen a more wretched creature than me? Widowed at 15, only three days after the wedding. Poor little me. I have to fend for myself. Begging for food, begging for work. Always hungry, often cold! Oh, I don't know. I'll stop working and dance a bit.
(She dances around, then she takes out a bowl and goes around the audience begging for money. When no one puts anything into it, she gives them a nasty look and exits in a huff.)
(Pune, a young woman of easy virtue, enters. She is dressed in a bright blue skirt and a canary yellow top. Her mask is heavily made up to look like a bride with thick white powder, pink circles on the cheeks and one in the centre of the forehead, and red leaves. She looks around and, making sure that no one is nearby, squats down behind a shrub and relieves herself. At that moment, Chung, the Buddhist monk, appears and gives her a fright. She quickly smooths down her skirt.)
Chung: Hello, pretty maid. I may be a monk, but I am also a man. I am attracted to you. Come dance with me.
(Pune feigns resistance coquettishly. They dance together for a while, and, carrying her over his shoulder, the monk disappears behind off into the wings. Choraengi, the rash meddler, enters and points to where the couple have left.)
Choraengi: Oh, my God! Did you see that? Whatever next? A Buddhist monk and a woman of easy virtue! Well I never!
(Enter Imae, the village fool, smiling broadly.)
Choraengi: Hey, village fool! Did you see the monk and Pune disappearing together? Have you ever heard of such a thing?
(Imae just grins stupidly.)
Choraengi: Ah well, no matter. It's a funny world. Come dance with me.
(The two of them dance and exit.)
(Yangban, the aristocrat, and Sonbi, the scholar, are sitting down, a long way from each other. They clear their throats unnecessarily, stroking their long beards, each trying to look more dignified than the other. Choraengi runs in, all excited.)
Choraengi: Oh, my masters. I have just seen something that is really outrageous. Absolutely scandalous! Can you imagine, masters?
Yangban: What is the fellow carrying on about?
Sonbi: Come to the point at once.
Choraengi: Pune and the Buddhist monk, my lords, I saw him carry her off into the bushes with my own two eyes. Have you ever heard of such a disgraceful thing?
Yangban: Pune and the Buddhist monk of all people. What is the world coming to? However, not to worry. Just bring Pune here.
Sonbi: That's a good idea. Boy, go fetch her.
(Choraengi exits. After a little he re-enters with a coy Pune.)
Yangban: Is that you Pune? Come girl. Come and massage my back.
(Pune goes to Yangban and starts massaging his shoulders.)
Yangban: Choraengi, Pune here well knows, there is no family around here to match mine.
Sonbi: That may be true, sir, but I have mastered the Chinese classics. Come Pune massage my arms. There's a good girl.
(Pune flits between the two men, massaging their arms and shoulders seductively.)
Choraengi: Sonbi, I have mastered more of the Chinese classics than you have.
(Yangban looks disgusted.)
Yangban: Really, I have heard it all. How could a peasant like you know the Chinese classics?
Sonbi: Whatever next?
Yangban: Sonbi, it is no use arguing in front of these Philistines.
Sonbi: I agree with you, sir. There is no point.
Yangban: Let's dance together instead.
(They dance around, Halmi appears and tries to join in. Sonbi looks at her face and pushes her away. Yangban frowns at her and does the same. Pune dances with Yangban and Sonbi, Halmi joins Choraengi and dances with him.)
(The scene is the wedding ceremony and the first night. Kakshi and the groom, played by Sonbi, enter. They face one another with a table in between them. Kakshi makes a ceremonial bow all the way to the floor twice and the groom does it once. After the ceremony, the couple lie down on a straw mat together and the lights dim.)