Glimpse of a puppetry show
Glimpse of a puppetry show. Courtesy: India Foundation for the Arts

Puppetry Is Not Just For Children: Anurupa Roy

Children are a serious audience and creating for them is far more challenging than it is for adults, she further added

September 23, 2020

People assume puppetry as "simple and for frivolous consumption, but it is a far more serious art", said puppeteer Anurupa Roy.

Children are a serious audience and creating for them is far more challenging than it is for adults, she further added.

"People has this assumption that puppetry is only for children," she said while speaking to news agency IANS.

It may be mentioned here that Anurupa Roy's puppetry group Katkatha recently premiered its first fully online show- Teelapur ka Rakshsha- in Germany.

It was co-produced with Helios Theatre and was recently part of talk series organised by Kolkata Centre for Creativity.

"While adults can be impressed with performance devices, special effects or skills or world play, children are not stupid enough to fall for them," the talk series insisted.

"Children watch performances seriously, with no other expectation than of authentic engagement," Roy said.

"They may not demand their money back when they don't receive it, but they switch off and go away into their own world," she added.

She further said that puppetry is a complex art form with multiple layers of engagement with its audience.

The simpler one is about skills and technique and the other one is about aesthetic, she added.

"Apart from the two, there is another layer- the layer of suspension of disbelief," she further added.

In this layer, she said, the audience sees dead material, knows it is dead material but believes that it laughed or cried or was breathing.

It may be mentioned here that Anurupa Roy has been closely connected with puppets and puppetry since she was 10-year-old.

She is also the recipient of the Ustad Bismillah Khan Yuva Puraskar in Puppetry (2006).

She has also been a visiting faculty at the University of California Los Angeles.

"Children, youth and communities have been important to us and have taught us continuously," she further added.

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