First launched in 2001, the International Puppet Festival brings together puppeteers, artists, and performers from around the globe to celebrate storytelling through puppetry. This year, it is set to showcase a diverse range of storylines and techniques.
Alongside puppeteers from India, there will be performers from countries, including Holland, Hungary, Italy and Korea. Festival Director and Founder of The Ishara Puppet Theatre Trust, Dadi D. Pudumjee said, “India’s longest-running puppet festival has returned after a gap of three years due to the pandemic. We are expecting to see those who want to enter the fantastic world of the willing suspension of disbelief. This year, there will be many puppet shows that will take you to a world of fantasy… for instance, India will present ‘Aisha’s Journey’, a performance that has been adapted from a Swedish children’s book.”
Sanjoy K. Roy, Managing Director, Teamwork Arts added, “The 19th Ishara International Puppet Festival brings together productions from India and abroad. Over the years, the Festival has created opportunities for training, storytelling and innovation, leading to a vibrant and contemporary language of puppetry in India.”
At the Festival, Italy will showcase IL FIL’ARMONICO, which will be performed by Teatro Tages/Agostino Cacciabue/Rita Xaxa and directed by Agostino Cacciabue. The performance will present stories and comic vignettes, inspired by puppeteer Cacciabue’s own life.
A Korean performance by Theatre Sangsahwa will present ‘Korea Puppet Fantasy’, directed by Bonsuk Kim. The performance will show Korea’s rich cultural heritage. Puppets, dance and music will blend together and pay homage to Korea’s past, present and future.
From Hungary, the Kamfor Musical Puppet Theatre will be presenting a performance titled ‘The Dragon and the Devil’, based on traditional Hungarian folktales. This performance will transport the audience to a spellbinding world full of magic, adventure, and mystery. In addition, the Netherlands will bring ‘Jan Klaassen, Katrijin and the Crown of King William Alexander’, performed and directed by Frans Hakkemars –straight from the land of the windmills and Van Gogh, it’s a unique celebration of Dutch culture.
More than a hundred international puppetry groups have already performed at the Festival. The list includes the US, Belgium, Italy, Germany, Switzerland, Spain, Turkey, Brazil, Sri Lanka, Indonesia, Taiwan, Japan, Afghanistan, Sweden, Norway, Israel, Ireland, Iran and Australia.