Many scholars believe that puppet theatre originated in India and it is from here that this art, which embraces epic themes, travelled to other Asian countries. Puppet theatres of India were awakened to the immense possibility of puppetry being used as a powerful means of dramatic expression.
Of late, new blood and talent has brought new life to the old and dry bones of puppetry. Puppets have by now made welcome incursions into such spheres of activity as education, therapeutics, rehabilitation of handicapped children, propaganda, advertisement, cinema and television.
In puppetry, a drama unfolds in the form of artistic expression It has always been an art entertaining people around the globe. India is said to be the home of puppets, but it is yet to awaken to its unlimited possibilities. To regenerate the emotions attached to Puppetry, “PUN” (Puppets Unite Neighbours) kick started the largest PUN International Puppet Festival 2017.
Ms. Gurpreet Kaur Sethi (Director RGV EVENTS & CONSULTANCY & Founder of PUN) said , “RGV Events along with Gems Akademia have taken this initiative of organising PUN Puppet Festival with the aim to create awareness about Puppetry and to bring together the Puppeteers from different countries. We have put special focus in selecting the puppet acts from various countries. The countries participating are UK, Germany, Peru, Portugal, Italy, Lithuania, Brazil, Singapore & India”.
Variety of Puppet acts ranging from String, Rod, glove, shadow, knee, giant, human, theatre, street, interactive and balloon puppetry with amazing creativity was a treat to watch. Also around 700 to 800 school children from Gems Akademia and other schools were the part of this parade along with props.
Giuseppe Cardascio of LA BOTTEGA THEATRALE who was here with Salvatore Varvaro said “Our philosophy has always been to help the children live in a world of fairy-tale fairies. Never lose sight of reality but always playing. Our desire is to spread and develop as much as possible the mixed technique in the out shows and to have a great international puppet school and mixed technique”
Jose Navarro Theatre, showcased its talent & is an international collaborative company led by the Peruvian – British artist, Jose Navarro who was trained in Mime by Juan Arcos, graduated in Art at Peru & National University of San Marcos in Lima; and holds an MA in Theatre Practice – & Puppetry and Object Theatre& at the Royal Central School of Speech and Drama, University of London – England.
Jose talking about puppetry as an art form says “ I consider this art form quite attractive and challenging, it mixes different creative skills and blends well with other art mediums to express things in way that actors can’t. It’s full of possibilities and that makes it very enticing. I’ve thought and learn and exchange with many people around the world and enrich my experience with the puppets more.”
Catch award-winning puppeteer Frankie Malachi added, “It’s a combination of many fine arts which includes: sculpting, make up, costuming, the theatrics, props making and many other factors that makes this art comes alive.”
Present on the occasion was Mr. Lalit Bhutoria (CEO Gems Akademia) said “Puppetry is an art introduced to us by our forefathers. Today’s young generation has become so attached to & dependent on multi media and technological gadgets for entertainment that Puppetry have its touch among the young minds. Through the Puppet Festival its our initiative to revive, support, promote & celebrate this art and bring it back to the children in all its glory’’.
Talking about the role of puppetry in today’s world, Nik Palmer and and Sarah Rowland-Barker of NOISY OYSTER PUPPET THEATRE said. “It is important to see live performance. As an art form it encompasses a wide range of skills. Puppets can say and do things which live actors cannot.”