Reminiscing about our childhood always conjures up colourful memories. Celebrating childhood in all its varies hues is this new theatre festival in town. Titled Bal Sangam, the week-long festival of performing arts and folk theatre for children, and performed by children, commences on an apt date - November 14, Children's Day.
The festival, in its eighth year now, promises to be a potpourri of folk dance, martial arts, puppet shows, acrobats and street performances like juggling, magic shows and others. Brought by National School of Drama's Sanskaar Rang Toli (Theatre in Education Company), the festival will have Indian folk and traditional arts presented by children practising these art forms from different regions of the country.
"In this edition of Bal Sangam, we have two segments - the traditional art form that will have musical and dance performances; and secondly the theatrical performances," says AK Barua of National School of Drama (NSD).
With a special focus on North-East region, the fest will host 21 groups from all over India. "North-East region has very rich traditional and cultural heritage. It has become the need of the hour that the heritage be given due attention they rightfully deserve," says NSD chairperson Ratan Thiyam.
The groups that will be performing at the fest include Abhiyan from Assam; Kohinoor Langa from Rajasthan; Blooming Culture Akademy from Manipur; Nehuhof Cultural Club from Mizoram; and Bashel Brothers Creations from Arunachal Pradesh. "Bal Sangam is a grand treat for children. We want children to come and experience the mela so that they are enriched with our traditional and cultural heritage," says Waman Kendre, director of NSD.