With a strong determination to promote original cultural traits to the southern part of the country, artisan Phung Quang Oanh created water puppets and shows that are deeply imbued with the southern culture.
His puppet shows done with beautiful puppets are very popular in Ho Chi Minh City where most water puppetry troupes use the puppets made by Oanh. His well-liked puppets shows in clued floating market on Cai Rang river (a festival in the Mekong Delta city of Can Tho), Bay Nui Cow Racing (a festival featuring the racing of cows of a certain breed originating from Bay Nui area in An Giang province), and Central Highlands Gong Festival.
Artisan Phung Quang Oanh.
Graduating from the Sculpture Faculty of Hanoi Music and Painting College, it is not difficult for Oanh to make water puppets. But to create lively puppets bearing folklore characteristics is another story, Oanh said, stressing the puppet maker should have a profound understanding of the national culture. According to Oanh, the puppets, which are made from fig tree wood and then lacquered, should not only be good-looking but bear cultural and comic features to attract the audience.
A characterofshow “Phoenix dance”.
After over 23 years doing water puppetry, artisan Phung Quang Oanh is one of very few puppet makers in Ho Chi Minh City. With an aspiration for promoting and conserving this original art, Oanh is planning to build an establishment for shaping puppets and performing puppetry shows to help local and foreign visitors better understand this type of folklore.