Jungle ke Rehesya’ a shadow Puppet Show: 1st of its kind in Uttarakhand
07 Feb 2016
Bringing alive the stories of Jim Corbett, Corbett Gram VikasSamiti, Chhoti Haldwani
Chhoti Haldwani, a small village in Kumaon ,Uttarakhand, was established by the legendary hunter -conservationist-writer Jim Corbett one hundred years ago in 1915. The Corbett Gram VikasSamiti (CGVS) organised a festival to commemorate the event and pay tribute to Jim Corbett. The Chhoti Haldwani Centenary festival highlighted the efforts of CGVS to conserve this legacy through community based tourism, initiated in Chhoti Haldwani in 2001.
The festival was spread over three days and included heritage walks, bird watching by trained guides of the samiti, cycling, book reading by Padamshri Tom Alter from books written by Corbett and a film show. Kumaoni folk dance and shadow puppet show on stories of Corbett was performed by members of CGVS. Members of the samiti were trained by the Katkatha Puppet Arts Trust from Delhi on shadow puppetry.
The puppeteers of Chhoti Haldwani work using an overhead projector and bring to life, under light and lens, the shadows of trees, villages, townscapes and people cut out of paper. Stories are narrated with dialogues, in the form of a theatrical piece and staged through shadows and music on a 6 by 8 wooden screen.
CGVS in its effort to promote the legacy of Jim Corbett wants to reach out to a larger audience.The presentations of the puppet show are from Jim Corbett’s books for eg there is one presentation on Jim Corbett’s superstitious belief in the churail in the villages. The most feared of all evil spirits, the churail appears in female form and lures the unsuspecting to their doom.
It is the first time shadow puppetry is being done in Uttarakhand, from a place where stories abound. This could happen at your place too! All we request is a seating area, honorarium to support the puppeters, transport and we assure a captive audience!
This could be your contribution in taking the legacy of Jim Corbett forward.