About twenty-five years ago many traditional Balinese performing arts that had been considered "male-only" began to be performed by women. These arts included dancing, music, masked drama, and shadow puppetry. Wayang kulit, or shadow puppetry, is one of the most important performance genres in Bali because of its status as ritual and entertainment. This paper examines two of the earliest women puppeteers, or dalangs, within the context of the society and politics, especially the state-sponsored arts academies, surrounding their work in wayang kulit. Even though these women were joined by other female students and performers, the number of women dalangs remains slight and few are choosing this path of performance today.