India is the land of arts and crafts. Almost every region has its own traditional form of art that includes drawings, paintings, embroideries, carvings, saris and more. We’re really blessed to be born in a country with so much diversity in this space. Sadly, however, some of these art forms are on the verge of extinction.
Some scholars suggest that puppetry has existed in India for over 3000 years. The surprising thing is that there are so many forms of puppetry that we aren’t even aware about. There’s shadow puppetry from Kerala. Then there’s Kathaputli from Rajasthan and Kundhei from Orissa. But all of these won’t exist a few years from now. There are very few artists left that know the art. Some NGOs have tried to bring puppetry to urban cities, yet this art form is nearing its end.
Puppetry is a type of narrative theatre; at the crossroads between bardic storytelling and theatre plays. Shows include live music, narration and gestures taken from dance (Yarrow 2001:69). In traditional puppetry; the plots are mainly derived from the Mahabharata, the Ramayana, and the Puranas (stories of gods and goddesses).
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