Monkey theatre show in Bangkok, Thailand

Monkey theatre show in Bangkok, Thailand

A female monkey lip-synchs to a song

A female monkey lip-synchs to a song at a monkey show in Bangkok, Thailand



A monkey named 'Prakit' holds knives during a show

While these pictures will seem to shocking to most Western people, many Thais see nothing wrong with dressing monkeys up and making them perform. Monkey theatre has long been performed in Thailand at local fairs or held at temples during religious ceremonies. Although it is disappearing from Thai society, monkey theatre is now recognised as an asset of historical Thai culture

Wachara Gunrobroo (32) of the monkey drama troupe 'Prakit Sitpragaan' performs with his monkeys during a show in Bangkok

Wachara Gunrobroo (32) of the monkey drama troupe ‘Prakit Sitpragaan’ performs with his monkeys during a show in Bangkok

Tippawan Vorasan (L) of the monkey drama troupe 'Prakit Sitpragaan' adjusts a costume for a female monkey named Kanchana

The monkey theatre company has been performing in Thailand for over 30 years. The director of the troupe, Panya Ganrobroo, inherited the position from his uncle

A monkey plays with a toy guitar

In an attempt to make the show more accessible to younger audience and tourists, Panya Ganrobroo also includes more contemporary plots in the company’s repertoire

A baby monkey jumps through a hoop made of knives

During the 30-minute show, monkeys perform feats such as calculating numbers or jumping through hoops made of knives

Tippawan Vorasan puts make-up on a monkey before a show

Monkey theatre is just one of the animal acts that can be seen in Thailand which have outraged animal activists. Other acts include boxing orangutans, basketball-playing elephants, and a temple which allows tourists to touch tigers

A monkey receives money from Thai children at the end of a show

A monkey collects money from Thai children at the end of a show

A monkey performs during a show by the monkey drama troupe 'Prakit Sitpragaan'

A monkey gestures “Namaskar” during a show by the monkey drama troupe ‘Prakit Sitpragaan’

Monkeys rest backstage after a show

Monkeys rest backstage after a show. A female monkey is seen in the background, removing lice from another monkey