Karagoz shadow theatre of Turkey
In September 2023, WPTS’s new Festival and Outreach Manager, Ezgi, met with Cengiz Ozek in Istanbul at his studio to connect with a prominent puppet artist from Turkey and hear more about Karagoz shadow theatre in Turkey.
Ozek explained the history and journey of Karagoz which traces back to 16th century and how it evolved into today’s shadow theatre, traditional and contemporary versions. He mentioned that Karagoz shadow theatre being showcased only in Istanbul at certain occasions for entertainment purposes back in the times and now Karagoz shadow theatre is widely recognized internationally. It is recognized as intangible world cultural heritage by UNESCO.
He talked about the 24th International Puppet Festival will take place in Istanbul with the direction of Cengiz Ozek between 27th October-4th November with local and international puppeteers showcasing their art and with workshops.
He insisted on his enthusiasm to visit Canada to perform and give workshops for adults and kids to make Karagoz puppets and perform them along with an exhibition to promote Karagoz and Hacivat. We look forward to an opportunity to to invite hime to Canada.
He suggested two books to for anyone who is interested in Turkish shadow theatre and Karagoz Shadow Theatre: Karagöz: Turkish shadow theatre by Metin And and Geleneksel Türk Gölge Tiyatrosu Karagöz by Cengiz Ozek (Turkish).