2015 was a special year for us. Our new space opened at Tanki Road in Jaitpur Village in Badarpur, the Southern border of Delhi, 12 kilometres from the city centre. The population around is dense and semi urban.
Since 2016 we began a puppet program for our neighbourhood, where we have a mix of the urban poor, migrant labour, and a large part of the city's labour force. This includes:
The Sunday Club
This is a 2-hour children’s program by artists at our studio for children of the neighbourhood. Here they learn to make puppets, tell stories, to paint, sculpt and move. They also have a small library of books and now we are building our animation library.
Art Reach India created a mural outside Katkatha studio along with children of the neighbourhood. Watch Art Reach India Volunteer Residency at Katkatha Puppet Arts Trust here.
We also hold regular shows, storytelling sessions, fetes and interactions with artists in this space. All the Katkatha shows are created here and people drop in to see this process, watch rehearsals and eat a meal with the team.
In-house training for Katkatha performers
Annual Kalaripayattu training - This training is compulsory for all Katkatha members and is also open to the public for a small fee each year. Vinod Kadingal, master practitioner and trainer of Kalaripayattu, from Trichur in Kerala spends twenty one days at the Katkatha studio.
On special days our space turns into a Museum cum theatre for children. Children come into our space to watch a puppet show, make puppets with the company members and then to walk through a sensorial exhibition called the Magic Cupboard. This is a Cupboard with 20 drawers, doors, sliders, each of which offers a special sensorial experience. Children touch, smell and taste the cupboards, find a miniature snoring man in a miniature drawer in a miniature bedroom, can peep through key-holes to find stories, become light designers in a miniature theatre. These experiences may be booked directly by schools or parents groups at firstname.lastname@example.org a month in advance.
The space also hosts an Artists Residency Program.