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6th India puppet festival culminates successfully
Published on 1 May. 2011 10:38 PM IST
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Sangeet Natak Akademi’s biennial puppetry festival, Putul Yatra being held in Srimanta Sankardeva Kalakshetra from April 22 culminated Sunday amidst fanfare.
The final day of this gala festival had a lot to cater the audience, like the previous nine days. The participants of the puppetry workshop, which was organized by SNA for the first time in Guwahati to nourish the talents of young puppeteers, staged two plays at SSK’s puppet theatre from 11:30 am onwards.
Aspirant shadow puppeteers staged a play based on Ramayan’s Sundar Khanda, which was directed by national award winning puppeteer S. Hanumant Rao. The ace puppeteer was aptly assisted by S. Chandrasekhar and S. Anjaneyulu, who in themselves are expert puppeteers. King Tree, a glove puppetry play was the other offering by the workshop participants.
The play had been adapted from a short story and flawlessly directed by Archana Talukdar of Puppetry Wing, Directorate of Cultural Affairs from Government of Assam. The play had a strong message on the need to preserve our forests. The workshop participants and their parents thanked SNA for providing such an opportunity to them for learning the various trades involved in the art of puppetry.
Later on the day, world famous puppeteer, Ram Das Padhye and his son Satyajit Padhye enthralled the audience with their famous and very special art of ventriloquism.
There performance was then followed by the staging of string puppetry play Sati Jaymati by Maa Bhabani Putala Theatre, a traditional string puppetry group of Assam. Joonmoni Ki Swarg Yatra, a contemporary puppetry play presented by Kalakshetra’s Puppetry group and directed by Chabin Rajkhowa kept the audiences engrossed to their seats.
Delhi’s Kuch Kuch Puppet Theatre Trust then presented their contemporary puppetry play Flying Flowers, which was enjoyed by one and all. Assam’s Rubi Puppet Theatre’s traditional string puppetry play Tejimala drew the final curtains to the festival.
On Saturday, Ishara Puppet Theatre Trust, Delhi presented a spectacular contemporary play Simple Dreams.
This special presentation was an effort to bring this lost tradition back to Assam, the birth place of this fine art of water puppetry.

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