Buddha: " Whenever you see things, just see. Whenever you listen, just listen. Whenever you know, just know."
Siam Niramit, Bangkok, Thailand
Siam Niramit, Bangkok, The Must-See Show of Thailand
19 Tiamruammit Road
Tel: 02 649 9222
Fax: 02 649 9275
We went to Siam Niramit in early November 2007 purchasing our tickets through Mini Tours of Bangkok.
The ticket involved an all inclusive deal with buffet dinner, entrance to the traditional Thai village complex, pre show entertainment and the three phase theatre show.
Firstly, you are not permitted to take cameras into the auditorium, but you are allowed to take photographs anywhere else in the complex.
The 2000 seat auditorium overlooks the world’s highest stage with comfortable reclining seats with ample leg room.
The show itself is divided into three scenes around the journey back through Siam's history, a journey beyond your imagination and a Buddhist based celebration of life and afterlife.
Scene 1 (four Acts).The journey back through Siam's history is a colourful and thorough portrait of Siam in ancient times in the kingdom of Lanna and how it developed before the arrival of traders from overseas. The following scenes describe the heritage of the Khmer civilisation in Issan, part of historic Siam, and the rise of the mighty capital Ayutthaya from a peasant settlement in the central plains to its development as a rich and fantastic city.
Scene 2 (three acts). The journey beyond your imagination describes the three realms awaiting us as life continues after death according to the Buddhist religion. Fiery hell descends in front of you with tormented souls and the suffering condemned. The second act describes Himapaan, a boundary between the human world and the heavens where half human, half bird creatures and trees bearing fruit in the form of beautiful girls exist. The third act of beyond the imagination takes you into the second level of heaven where Indra, the greatest deity of all, presides. Angels perform an elegant aerial dance.
Scene 3 (one act). The Buddhist based celebration of life and afterlife. Throughout Thai culture there are a number of festivals and a wide variety of "merit making" lore. Ceremonies include: the ordination into monkhood, the Song Kran Water Festival, a ghost parade and Loy Krathong (Light festival).
During the performance there are a number of occasions where you will be amazed at the diversity of the effects within the performance: with thunder and lightning, rain and even animals (elephants, goats and chickens) appearing in the acts with the most surprising element of all being the parade involving two live elephants passing through the seated area of the auditorium.
We would say that the evening started for us at about 17.30 and went on to 22.00 and was probably the best live show we have seen since Andrew Lloyd Webber's Cats! Great value for money. We would recommend that you arrive early (say 17.00) visit the traditional village in daylight for photographic opportunities, but well worth the visit even after dark. There are photo opportunities to have with performers both before and after the show and the opportunity to feed and pet the elephants in the courtyard.
Items annotated (TAT)
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