HYDERABAD: It was a magical evening of storytelling at a cultural space in the city. The session conducted by Deepa Kiran transported everyone to many different worlds.
The community storytelling session was part of Hydourite, the performing arts festival. Deepa Kiran is founder of Story Arts India and is based in Hyderabad. She is a professional storyteller, education consultant, writer and voice-over artist.
The storytelling session saw Deepa sharing fun folktales and getting the audience to guess, sing along, and move along to the lilting rhythms and melodies woven into the stories. Engaging children with simple folk musical instruments like todi, shakes, tambourine, damru and wind flute, she had the audience’s attention hooked till the end. The storyteller used different languages like Hindi, English, Telugu and Tamil in the 90 minute journey as it unfolded three short stories and few songs. “Sun lo sun lo ek kahani, jisme raja tha na rani, ek mendhak duba pani mein,” sang children along with Deepa as she narrated the story through songs. With her own sound-effects and background music with folk instruments, she added life to the enchanting evening.
Among those present at the session were Nitin Sharma, a parent who said, “This is a wonderful event and should happen more frequently in the city. It helps children in enhancing their creative skills by triggering their imagination.”
Another was a student of class 2. “I like telling and listening to stories. I liked the way she was playing and adding tunes with musical instruments the most, ” said Siddharth. With storytelling fast becoming a lost art form, Gautam Deshpande said, “Somewhere we have forgotten this art of storytelling. Back in our times, our parents and grandparents always had time to entertain us with interesting stories. But it’s different today, I’ve no time to tell my child a story. It’s very good that someone like Deepa is taking time out of her life and engaging people this way. I too was taken back into the magical days of childhood.”
Explaining the importance of the art, Deepa said, “It triggers imagination. It is creative and relaxing. Children are overloaded with readymade techniques in digital space which makes them a passive recipient. But, unlike movies or games, in storytelling actions happen rather than just being delivered. It’s a call to everyone to get back to the era of gazette free story time”, she added. Recently, Deepa’ first book, ‘The Royal Mistake - Print cum Audio’ was released to a good response from the readers.