Friday, February 26, 2010

Turkey - Shadow Puppets 2007

Shadow Puppets:

60 Yeni Kurus - Tuzsuz Deli Bekir & Efe
70 Yeni Kurus - Hacivat & Karagoz
80 Yeni Kurus - Tiryaki & Celebi

The subject of the set is : Turkish cultural assets – Shadow play characters. The shadow theatre is a puppet heather that involves two-dimensional figures casting their shadows on a screen. It had an important place in Turkey as well as throughout the larger area of the Ottoman Empire. A long–standing puppet tradition has been established by the Turks even before the sixteenth century, when the shadow theatre was introduced. There is virtually no kind of puppet show that Turkey has not tried. Puppet tradition came from Central Asia, but shadow theatre did not. It was borrowed from Egypt. One question remains however about the origin of the Egyptian shadow theatre. The three stamps of the set pictures characters of this shadow theatre. Let me show you the stamps, one by one, and give you some background information about the characters that are pictured.

Tuzsuz Deli Bekir and Efe:
Tuzsuz Deli Bekir is a drunkard that always blusters and threatens, carrying a sword and spreading terror. Efe is a swashbuckling character from the Western coast of Turkey. He wears an embroidered jacket which is so short that it barely reaches his elbows, and a high fez. Across his back is his long gun. He tries to restore discipline in the neighbourhood all by himself and is usually a man of good intentions.

Karagoz and Hacivat :
Karagoz is supposed to be a gypsy. Karagoz has a round face, his have a large black pupil, hence his name “Black Eye”. He has a pug nose and a curly black beard. His head is completely bald and he wears an enormous turban which always trigger laughter when it falls. Hacivat is a reflective character with a pointed turned-up beard. He always uses an erudite language whereas Karagoz uses the language of the common people. Hacivat can recite famous poems, he has a vast knowledge of music, he knows the names of various rare spices, the terminology of gardening. Each movement of Harcivat is well calculated. Karagoz, on the contrary is impulsive. Where Hacivat is always ready to accept the situation and maintain the status quo and establishment, Karagoz is always eager to try out new ideas and he constantly misbehaves himself.

Tiryaki and Celebi :
Tiryaki is and opium addict. He spends all his time smoking opium and. He can easily be identified by his pipe. He is a flippant type but always tries to look serious.
Celebi is usually presented in a sympathetic light. He is not caricatured as are so many of the other characters. He is a dandified young man whose love for a courtesan or a girl of good family is usually the subject of the play. He is a young and rich man, who assumes a careful and rather self-conscious elegance of dress. He is dressed in European style. He speaks with an educated Istanbul accent.

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