What Prada and Gucci can do with leather, these artisans can, too - keep you spellbound for a couple of hours - but much better, and for free.
The Hyderabad chapter of SPIC MACAY (Society for Promotion of Indian classical Music and Culture Amongst Youth) is presenting a Tolu Bommalata (leather puppet show) as part of Festival Series 2011, on 27th & 28th January, at 4 different venues
The festival is being held in memory of Pt. Bhimsen Joshi, Swami Vivekananda, Viswa Kavi Rabinbranath Tagore, Mother Teresa, Faiz Ahmed Faiz and Pt. Mallikarjuna Mansur, and the first performance on the last day will be held at P Obul Reddy Public School, Jubilee Hills, on 28th January, at 10:30am.
The artistes - including Kumara Tiripalu, Kale Srihari, Kumara Pullayya, Kale Chinna Pullayya and Kumara Ranga Rao (men) and Kumara Ammani, K Vasundharamma and Kale Dhanalakshmi (women) - will present 'Sundarakanda' from the epic of Ramayana.
Tolu Bommalata originated in the Nimmalakunta village of Andhra Pradesh. The art is popular not only in Andhra Pradesh but also in Karnataka, Tamilnadu, Kerala, Maharashtra, and Orissa. The patronage of the art has declined after the advent of television.
While the puppets of Kerala, Maharashta, and Orissa are traditionally black and white, those from Karnataka, Tamilnadu and Andhra are multi-coloured. Andhra puppets are larger in size, with separate parts of the various limbs stitched loosely for better articulation.
These puppets are made of buffalo or sheep hide, and are later bleached with local paints. Holes are made on the leather puppets, and a thin bamboo stick is attached to them so that they remain straight. Strings are attached to the various joints of the leather puppets to facilitate the controlling of their movements. Designs are drawn on the light-brown leather.
A white screen (cloth) is hung across the stage, and the puppets are made to dance by the puppeteers, who stand behind the screen. Gods, Horses, elephants, warriors, fruits, cows, birds, deers are the popular figures made. Stories usually are those from the Ramayana or Mahabharata.
Entry is free. Please contact Sanjana at 98490-33344 / Madhurendra at 90005-45124 / Pradeep at 94920-62289 / Himabindu at 99498-58838 for further details.