Breathing life into folk tales | india | Hindustan Times
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Breathing life into folk tales

HUNDREDS OF puppets from various regions have gathered in Lucknow for a whole week. ?Their? dress and language with the typical regional touch makes them stand apart from each other and the Lucknowites are all enchanted. There are about 200 motionless ?putuls? in the gallery of the Rashtriya Lalit Kala Kendra while more are busy ?practising? their movements in the Ravindralaya auditorium and at Sangeet Natak Akademi.

india Updated: Feb 22, 2006 00:25 IST

HUNDREDS OF puppets from various regions have gathered in Lucknow for a whole week. ‘Their’ dress and language with the typical regional touch makes them stand apart from each other and the Lucknowites are all enchanted.

There are about 200 motionless ‘putuls’ in the gallery of the Rashtriya Lalit Kala Kendra while more are busy ‘practising’ their movements in the Ravindralaya auditorium and at Sangeet Natak Akademi.

From one foot to seven feet, in vibrant colours and different shapes, the putuls are here to narrate hundreds of folk tales. Sangeet Natak Akademi, New Delhi and UP Sangeet Natak Akademi (UPSNA) have brought alive the puppets of India in ‘Putul Yatra’ at the Rashtriya Lalit Kala Kendra gallery.

Shubha Saxena, Coordinator for the show says, “Sangeet Natak Akademi collects puppets from all over India. And we have brought a part of that collection to Lucknow. The selections for the exhibition have been made with a view to facilitate a basic understanding of the range and forms of puppetry in India.”

She adds, “SNA wants to protect and preserve the traditional puppet groups by giving them grants for training and production. And the ‘Putul Yatra’ is a move to attain this goal.”

A wide variety of puppets are included in this exhibition. String Puppets, rod puppets, shadow puppets and glove puppets are the traditional forms of puppets that are widely found in the country and are included in the exhibition. Apart from this, a small collection of puppets created by modern contemporary puppeteers in India is also included in the exhibition. There are leather puppets, cloth puppets, paper mesh puppets and wood carving puppets as well to give variety.

The puppets have come from Assam, Kerala, Orissa, Tamil Nadu, Karnataka, Rajasthan, Maharashtra, Andhra Pradesh and West Bengal.

Putul Yatra was initially mounted on the occasion of Sangeet Natak Akademi’s golden jubilee festival in New Delhi in 2003. Since then this exhibition has traveled in different forms to Mumbai, South-East Asia and European countries.
The exhibition began on Tuesday and will carry on till February 28. Apart from the exhibition, there will be puppet shows as well. From February 21-24 at Valmiki Rangshala, UPSNA and from February 25-27 at Ravindralaya. An interactive session with the puppeteers has also been organised on February 26-27 at RLKK, Aliganj.