About Cliff Long

Historian, anthropologist, actor and musician, Cliff Long has for many years held a tremendous interest and a great respect for the cultures and traditions of the sultanates, kingdoms and empires that once stretched along the powerful trading networks of the old Silk Road.  Today, many of the arts once so vital to the identity of these great nations are in renaissance, and the resurgence of Turkish shadow puppet theater is no exception.

Crescent Moon Karagoz Shadow Puppet Theater developed out of two college level courses taught by Cliff focusing on these ancient trading networks and the dynamic cultural, spiritual and material exchange that earmarked this vibrant time. Encompassing all of Central, South and East Asia, the great western hub of commerce of this network would become the city of Istanbul.  The two main characters Karagoz and Hacivat and the delights of Turkish shadow puppet theater were a personal discovery while Cliff was doing research on medieval Anatolia. All puppets and stage sets are carefully constructed by Cliff by hand with great attention to accuracy and historic detail.

Performances are presented in English, but the stories remain true to the form and style that developed during the early years of the Ottoman Empire, and which can still be experienced and enjoyed in Turkey today.

With the founding of Crescent Moon Karagoz Shadow Puppet Theater, Cliff hopes to bring this wonderful and ancient art form to new audiences in America, along with all the humor, surprises and classic timelessness that has allowed it to endure for over six hundred years.

In addition, Cliff provides educational and entertaining costumed tours of Fells Point for Baltimore Ghost Tours, and can be hired as an entertainer providing pirate themed music and entertainment for both children and adults. Some of the festivals that Cliff has regularly appeared at (as a pirate) are: The Blackbeard Festival in Hampton, Virginia, Pirates and Wenches Weekend in Rock Hall on Maryland's Eastern Shore, and Privateer Days in Baltimore.  Cliff also had the distinct honor to perform at the National Geographic Society at the Society's festival in support of the exhibit Real Pirates: The Wreck of the Whydah which was on display at National Geo's DC venue from spring through summer 2013.

Holding a BA and an MA in Anthropology and Archaeology from the University of Illinois, an MA in Public History from Loyola University and an MA in Applied Healing Arts from Tai Sophia Institute, Cliff has worked at a number of historic sites across the country as a costumed interpreter and entertainer, and has also received the Best Attraction/Best Children's Performer Award from What's UP Annapolis Magazine's readers poll, and the Best New Historic Initiative Award from the Four Rivers Heritage Association in southern Maryland. He is also the author of the children's book, "Broadside Ben and the Big Brass Cannon." Having worked in the performance arts most of his life, Cliff toured in the 1980's as a professional circus clown with the Ringling Brothers and Barnum and Bailey Circus, and in the 1990's aboard Turner Broadcasting's 1960 replica of HMS Bounty.

Cliff is also on staff as an adjunct professor at Howard Community College and The Community College of Baltimore County, and is part of Howard Community College's award winning Kids On Campus summer program.  During the Kids On Campus season, Cliff  teaches week long classes for children in world mythology as well as offering a special in depth course focusing on author JRR Tolkien's world of Middle Earth and his monumental literary achievements, The Lord of the Rings, The Hobbit, and The Silmarillion.

Most recently Cliff has added additional performance work with Heavy Seas Beer near downtown Baltimore offering the pirate themed "Legends of Beer and Piracy" brewery tour of the brewing facility on selected days during the month.  For more information check out the brewery's website at www.hsbeer.com


About Cliff


Karagoz & Hacivat

Caravan of Cultures

Instructions for Making a Shadow Puppet - Under construction

Informational Links & Crescent Moon Store


Web site created by Kat Bennett, La Sirene Publications.

Photograph of Cliff Long taken by Kat Bennett 2011. All rights reserved.

Host:  Inmotionhosting.com. Any corrections or comments please contact katroving at hotmail dot com.

Last updated 10/18/2016