Storytelling through puppet play
It was festive mood at Ranga Shankara. Colourful and bright rangolis were drawn at many places. Fresh flowers and garlands were put up at the entrance.
One could also smell yummy food from the nearby cafe. All this was part of the Ranga Ugadi, a feast of Kannada theatre, literature and traditional food, organised by Ranga Shankara.
The day kickstarted with a puppet play based on a funny episode from Mahabharata, for five year olds and above. The puppet play was known as Ashtavakra and was performed by the Bangalore based team Dhaatu. More than† forty children enjoyed the puppet play. They comfortably settled themselves on the stage and could not stop whispering and murmuring among themselves as they waited for everybody else to settle down before the play started. †
The story of Ashatavakra, from the epic Mahabharata, was narrated in the form of a musical puppet play, which was amazing.
The whole thing was shown on a small stage made just for these dolls. Background music was melodious and was mostly folk.
The clothes in which the dolls were dressed also resembled the olden age. Props were used well, narration was also neat and understandable.
Asha, a housewife, said, “I mainly came here to help my daughter become more aware about our culture, festival and Kannada theatre. This is a different kind of medium. There is a difference in me telling the story of Ashtavakra to her and her getting to see it on stage and in the form of a puppet play. I am sure she will cherish these memories for long and I also enjoyed it a lot.”
After the play, the cafe at Ranga Shankara served some authentic food, which is usually prepared in every household in Karnataka for Ugadi.† †