Budaixi revival in the dexterous hands of Kuo Chien-fu

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Have you seen budaixi, the traditional Taiwanese puppet theater? Known for exquisitely fine features, movements remarkably true to life, a vivid narrative, and lively traditional Chinese music, it may come as no surprise that the puppet art of budaixi is a cherished common memory to countless people from the older generation. Though the art has seen a gradual decline over the years, thankfully the young generation is quietly going about bringing it into modern times. 

Today, one cannot talk of budaixi without including 26-year-old Kuo Chien-fu (郭建甫), Taiwan’s youngest budaixi troupe master, whose degree of budaixi sophistication is without question on par with esteemed puppet masters of the past. Passionate about budaixi since just a boy, Chien-fu has diligently gone about mastering the art, not only learning the dexterous puppet manipulation skills but also becoming an adept in painting and embroidery to make hand-made costumes for his puppets.

 

In the face of a decline in traditional budaixi, this new generation puppet master, Kuo Chien-fu, is on a passionate mission to find innovative ways in which to rekindle the art, hopefully attracting new audiences from the young generation and perhaps even enticing back some budaixi old-timers, who can reminisce on their own youth.

以下為中文對照

掌中細膩 郭建甫創新布袋戲

你看過布袋戲嗎? 精緻小巧的外型,維妙維肖的動作,配上生動的口白,熱鬧的國樂伴奏,逐漸式微的布袋戲是許多老一輩的共同回憶,這樣的傳統文化,傳承到年輕一代手中,也正悄悄地與時俱進。

說起布袋戲,操偶的精采程度不亞於前輩,年僅26歲的郭建甫是台灣最年輕的操偶師,從小熱愛布袋戲的他,在勤於學藝之下,不僅練得一手細膩操偶技巧,更精於彩繪、縫製、刺繡等功夫,每尊戲偶的戲服都由他親手縫製。

面對傳統布袋戲的式微,郭建甫努力為布袋戲找出新出路,要如何讓那些轉身離去的觀眾再次回過頭來看戲,是這一代年輕充滿熱血藝師的使命。

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Budaixi revival in the dexterous hands of Kuo Chien-fu

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