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Those who hold the whip seem to be in charge of the entire event.
They whip the dancers - quite hard, making a loud cracking sound - on the back. It is hard to see if the whip actually touches the dancer. I think it does.
Finally, they whip another time, gently, on the side and send the dancer off.
They also feed the dancers - with fruits, egg, leaves... even grass and glass!
It is said that those who hold the whip are the ones who invoke the spirits that seem to possess the dancers.
Part of my photo essay: Dance of the horse spirit.
Singapore. January 2009.
In the Dance of the horse spirit photo essay.
Also by Richard Seah
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