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Bhaashaa Foundation back with 3rd edition of ‘Kathayatra’ to explore the art of story telling


Pune (Nov. 14, 2014): Bhaashaa Foundation, a city-based voluntary non-profit organization working for the preservation and enhancement of regional languages has organized the 3rd edition of ‘Kathayatra’ – a mega story festival in the city at Balgandharva Ranga Mandir between 21st and 23rd November 2014. This was announced by Swati Raje, President of Bhaashaa Foundation during a Press Conference organized in the city today.

The brain behind this innovative concept of ‘Kathayatra’, Swati Raje said while addressing the media, “Story is losing its rightful place in our fast-paced, technology-studded contemporary life. Grandmother Tales are also vanishing fast along with grandmothers moving away from modern nuclear families. To bring back the glory of stories, we have started this one of its kind event in 2011 and we have been receiving overwhelming response from not only children but also from grown-ups. We are happy to be back with 3rd edition of ‘Kathayatra’”.  
“There will be two verticals in ‘Kathayatra’ like every year. Various special events would take place at Balgandharva Ranga Mandir during these 3 days whereas an academic International Conference will also be organized in association with Sahitya Academy and National Book Trust, New Delhi on the topic ‘Translations & Migrations’ wherein various academicians and scholars from India and abroad would be participating. This conference will be held at Hotel Le Meridian on 21st & 22nd November from 9:00am to 5:00pm.” She further added.   

On 21st, 22nd and 23rd all 3 days, ‘Kathayatra’ will have lots of colorful activities, workshops, book exhibition, etc. back-to-back and will give glimpse of diverse performances by nationally and internationally acknowledged artists which is one of the highlights of ‘Kathayatra’.

First day, i.e. Friday, 21st November, ‘Kathayatra’ will begin at 6:00pm with ‘Navaras Katha’ – ballet. This program will showcase various tales woven in ‘Navarasas’ through Kathak dance form. This will be definitely a treat for the viewers, which will be followed by an inaugural speech by Prakash Javadekar, Minister of Environment & Forest, Govt. of India. After the inauguration of ‘Kathayatra’, Nancy Silberkleit, CEO of Archies Comics, USA will unfold an interesting story behind Archies comics. First day will end with a widely acclaimed Hindi play, ‘Shakkar ke Paanch Dane’. This play is directed by Manav Kaul of Aaranya Theatre and Kumud Mishra, a versatile actor is in the lead role.

On second day (Saturday, 22nd November), at 9:30am there will be a story telling competition for grandparents which is very popular event amongst grandparents and they participate in this competition in huge numbers. This story telling competition will surely bring back your old memories. This will be followed by a vibrant Children’s play, ‘Panchatantra’ by Ranga Sri, Bhopal. This play will have different stories of ‘Panchatantra’ performed in an exciting manner. After this performance, in the afternoon, there will be various workshops on ‘Weave your own story’ by which will encourage children to build and narrate their own stories.

The second day also includes a special ‘Story Building Workshop’ that has been organized for hearing impaired children in association with ‘Cochlea’, Pune which works for the hearing impaired children. Another workshop will be on ‘Dramatics & Theatre’ for children which will be organized along with Kolkata based ‘Chae-Pane’ organization working with children. This will be followed by ‘Pattachitra Katha’ – a story telling activity by ‘Pattachitra’ artists from Kolkata.

In the evening, ‘Keertan’ – a traditional story-telling form of Maharashtra has been organized. This will be followed by a real life story sharing by a noted writer and an activist, Father Francis De Britto. This day will have ‘Stories in a song’ as a last performance which will be a spellbinding journey of music through history by Arpana Theatre, Mumbai.     

The last day (23rd November) will commence with ‘Katha Junya Punyachi: Pune Heritage Walk’ organized by Janawani, Pune. Like every year, a state level interschool quiz competition ‘Yaksha Prashna’ is organized by Bhaashaa Foundation in which various schools from rural and urban Maharashtra will be participating. This year’s topic is ‘Tales of cities’. At the same time, a session of environmental stories – ‘Nani ki Kahani: Pani ki Kahani’ by Abid Surti will be held outside the theatre.

Another highlight of this year’s ‘Kathayatra’ will be an interesting and interactive session ‘Goshta Vartamanpatrachi’ in association with Pune Shramik Patrakar Sangh. This session will give children a glimpse of working nature of a newspaper, making of a newspaper. Experts from media will be interacting with children and make children actually prepare a mini version of newspaper.

On this day also, two workshops have been organized by Kolkata based ‘Chae Pane’ and ‘Pattachitra’. Katha Abhivachan will be done by college students.

Closing ceremony of ‘Kathayatra’ will have a special talk on ‘Language, Stories and Technology’ by Vivek Samant, CEO & Managing Director of MKCL. After this informative talk, an internationally acclaimed folk play, ‘Ramayana’ has been organized by Little Ballet Troupe from Bhopal which will conclude the 3rd edition of ‘Kathayatra’. This play has been mesmerizing audiences for last 60 years.
To add up to all these days full of various thrilling & colorful events, there will be a ‘A Great Wall of Bhaashaa’  - a special creative space for young & old along with ‘Pustak Jatra’ – a book exhibition which will be an extravaganza for children.  
One can pick up free passes and registration forms from Balgandharva Ranga Mandir from Tuesday, November 18th, 2014 onwards to be a part of ‘Kathayatra’.