Breathing life into puppets

Ancient Art

A rod-puppetry show was held recently at Bimba, the Art Ashram, by the troupe Puthaliloka Bimba recently. 

The show, titled Exalting Satyabhama, celebrated Satyabhama’s beauty and her timeless devotion to Lord Krishna. 

The puppets danced in kuchipudi style to live classical tunes. The divine combination of music, art and dance left the audience awestruck when they saw the puppets turn into characters. 

One of the main aims of Puthaliloka Bimba was to familiarise Bangalorean to this ancient art and keep the tradition of rod-puppetry alive. 

The performers were students of fine arts and were trained by Deepika Dorai and her teacher, Ranganatha Rao, and the show saw an audience of different age groups.“Although this was a premiere show, it didn’t seem like one. The ambience and presentation were very professional,” said RK Padmanabha, the chief guest for the evening. 

Manasa, one of the visitors, said that she was witnessing a show such as this for the first time and it was a wonderful and spiritual experience. 

She added that she looked forward for many such performances. Divya, an architect who is passionate about art, said that it was an amazing performance. 

Rajat, a regular visitor to the place, said that in today’s digital age, it’s good people are coming out to appreciate live performances. 

This unique and ancestral art form of transforming heavy wooden dolls into realistic characters was first started in Vijayanagar, and was later carried on by Ranganath Rao’s grandfather, who presented his puppet shows in the royal courts. 

The ashram is looking forward to organising many such events after the overwhelming response from the audience.

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