Favours and foreign affairs: Joko Widodo’s first year as Indonesian president
There comes a moment in a long evening of wayang orang, the theatre of Java based on the great Hindu epics, when the drama cuts from strident speeches by gorgeously costumed warriors and princes against painted backdrops of palaces. A set of open fields and distant volcanoes drops down, a dreamy riff comes from the gamelan orchestra, and onstage in a rolling waddle comes the shirtless, fat character Semar followed by an ill-assorted trio of younger peasants. The audience chuckles, and settles in to enjoy a lighter moment. The switch has been thrown to vaudeville.