Peoples’ Puppet Project

‘People’s Puppet Project’ is an International Workshop hosted jointly by Urban Design Collective and INTACH Pondicherry in Pondicherry between 15-28 December 2014. The aim of the workshop is to promote the local heritage and culture of our cities through large-format public performances, while creating awareness towards heritage conservation and boosting heritage tourism locally and internationally.

On 27th December 2014, as a culmination of the People’s Puppet Project workshop that was hosted in Pondicherry over two weeks, giant puppets that were created during the workshop paraded the streets of Pondicherry in a bid to save the city’s unique heritage. The Puppets walked down MG Road, onto Nehru Street and eventually ended the parade at Mission Street.

Following the puppet parade on the streets of Pondicherry, ‘Bomakka’ was a half-hour puppet performance accompanied by some phenomenal folk music and a narration in Tamil.
Bommakka is the story of a grandmother who was so immersed in TV soaps that she had forgotten the days when she would sit on the ‘thinnai’ of her home and regale her granddaughter, Dhanam with stories. As the play unfolded, the TV is destroyed and the good old storytelling tradition survives.The show concluded with the bursting of the auspicious pumpkin to applause and whistles from the crowd.

Project team: Devangi Ramakrishnan, Vidhya Mohankumar, Sarat Chandran
Partner Organisations: Snuff Puppets Australia, INTACH Pondicherry, Indianostrum Theatre