The unique Kathakar festival opened here on Friday evening with immersive sessions by a few seasoned storytellers from Australia, the United Kingdom, Mongolia and Sierra Leone.
Organised in partnershipp with the Ministry of Culture, the Kathakar festival was inaugurated by Union Minister of Law and Justice Kiren Rijiju at Sunder Nursery.
The festival also hosted a conversation between singer Mohit Chauhan and actor Nawazuddin Siddiqui on the topic of “Kissey Kahani aur Adakari”.
“I applaud the organisers of the Kathakar for providing a platform to storytellers from around the world. Our society has forgotten the importance of our storytelling tradition, so we need to encourage platforms like these. Our government will further contribute to Kathakar in the future,” Rijiju said at the inauguration.
The four-day festival will hear stories from seven nations, including South Korea and Israel.
“Stories emerging from villages are very powerful as life is totally different there…I love folk songs and stories that are connected to our lives. Whenever I meet filmmakers, I urge them to make movies based on stories from villages,” filmmaker-writer Imtiaz Ali, who is also a patron of the festival, said in a statement.
The festival will also host Sufi musical night by Satpal Wadali, a session with actor Sanjay Mishra at India Gate, Kabir Vani by acclaimed folk singer Prahlad Singh Tipaniya, and shadow puppet show by Ramchandra Pulavar and team.
Among International artists this year, Kathakar will feature Niall Moorjani and Sarah Rundle (United Kingdom), Lilian Rodrigues Pang (Australia), Baatarjav Erdenetsogt (Mongolia), Alim Kamara (Sierra Leonne), Seung Ah Kim (South Korea) and Yossi Alfi (Israel).
“This festival was started by the Gahilote sisters, Rachna, Prarthana & Shaguna in 2010 under the aegis of UNESCO to preserve and promote the ancient art of storytelling. I have been associated with it from the very beginning and have seen how this festival has evolved.
“Today, storytelling has become a thriving art form and has reclaimed a niche audience. It feels wonderful to have helped revive an art form and contributed my bit in preserving our ancient Indian culture,” Chauhan said.
The festival will come to an end on November 28.