First female master of Karagöz
ANKARA - Anatolia News Agency
Müzeyyen Nalkesen has been receiving Karagöz training for many years. AA photo
Stage actress Müzeyyen Nalkesen has long been interested in traditional shadow theater and aims to become the first woman Karagöz and Hacivat master after completing a three-year apprenticeship.
A ceremony recognizing new Karagöz masters is held every year in September, Nalkesen said. She explained that there have been no female Karagöz masters before because it is very difficult for a woman to create the deep voice of Karagöz. Nalkesen has been working on the voice for three years. “A Karagöz artist should be a very good painter so that he or she can paint puppets well. He or she should also be a good musician, actor and observer. ”
It is very difficult to find the supplies to make original accessories for Karagöz and Hacivat performance, Nalkesen said. “It is very hard to find the root- and plant-based paints [used to color the leather puppets] and other original accessories, and it is very hard to buy the accessories,” she said. “An original stage decoration can cost 60 to 80 Turkish Liras to make, and purchasing them makes the price higher, around 150 to 200 liras,” Nalkesen added.