Audience comments

‘Engrossing [asyiik lho] great…. Bravo!’ -Comment by ‘Sekarmelati’ on youtube video The Magical Lake

‘Your puppetry is really great’ (Ndalangnya bagus sekali). -Bambang Hiendrasto, Consul General of the Republic of Indonesia, Vancouver, Canada

‘The updated commentary […] could appeal both to adults and children.’ -Richard Balzer, about Arjuna’s Meditation performed at Harvard University

Arjuna’s Meditation was mind-blowing and quite profound!’ – Dr. John Bell, Director of the Ballard Institute and Museum of Puppetry

‘A  fascinating act between puppetry, stand-up (in this case ‘sit-down’) comedy, and philosophic research, in which Matthew as dalang, in a semi-schizophrenic dialogue with his own puppets, and with the audience, questions himself about the how, the why, and the what it is to perform a tradition of a far-away place to an audience that does not belong to the same cultural territory of that tradition’ – Diego Pellecchia’s blog about A Dalang in Search of Wayang

‘His skill and humour kept spectators entertained through the night’ [dengan kepiawaian dan kejenakaannya membuat hadirin bertahan sampai selesainya pertunjukan hingga larut malam] –Article by the Indonesian Consultate of Victoria on the Indonesian Foreign Ministry website

‘Well versed in performing the Indonesian masterwork of wayang kulit’ [mahir memainkan wayang kulit karya besar bangsa Indonesia] – Sigit Aryo Prasetyo in Indonesia Media, January 2012

‘Very skilled in storytelling’ [sangat luwes dalam menyampaikan cerita], Republika

‘The wayang lasted seven hours.  Or maybe it was an hour and a half.  Or maybe thirteen.  Or maybe all of those.  It was Wagner and Woody Allen, corny and exalted, beautiful and prosaic, familiar and altogether new.  I thought none of these things all the time, and there were times I didn’t think at all.’ Bill Brooks, about Lokananta: The Gamelan of the Gods (2012)

‘Having a wayang performance in Britain is indeed a very rare occasion and to have it done so superbly by you with the humour and banter has bridged the cultural differences and conveyed the beauty of the story and the tradition of Indonesia to the attendees.’ – H.E Teuku Mohammad Hamzah Thayeb, Ambassador Extraordinary & Plenipotentiary of the Republic of Indonesia to the United Kingdom, Ireland and International Maritime Organization, about Lokananta: The Gamelan of the Gods (2012)

‘”Lokananta… was  [a] success. [This] all-night puppet show combines various musical instruments such as the bagpipes of the Scottish, Irish, drums, trumpet and music keroncong. Hundreds of people, including Ambassador to the United Kingdom Hamzah Thayeb and Mrs. Lastry Hamzah Thayeb and Education Attaché Embassy in London Fauzi Soelaiman and his wife,  really enjoyed the show of Ki Matthew Cohen. This Puppet show is actually  a media to strengthen relations between the two countries, in the field of culture.’

‘You effectively embody the microcosm and macrocosm [bhuwana alit lan bhuwana agung ing jeroning rogo]‘ –Tapa Sudana, about A Dalang in Search of Wayang


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