The annual Folk Puppet Festival organised by Rafi Peer Theatre Workshop will start on Friday (today), the organisers said.
The three-day festival at Peeru’s Café brings together traditional as well as relatively new puppeteers, including Bahadar Ali, Bashir Dhamali, Abdul Aziz, Abid Ali, Muhammad Jamil and Muhammad Bashir. Groups from the Pakistan National Council of the Arts, the Alhamra Puppet Theatre and Asghar Bahawalpuri will also be performing at the festival.
According to the organisers, puppetry dates back several centuries, featuring prominently in the courts of Mughal emperors.
“The puppeteers hailing largely from Rajasthan struggled with poverty and a disregard for their art,” said Rafi Peer Theatre Workshop’s Tasneem Peerzada.
She said that the festival aimed at creating awareness among the public about the art.
The Museum of Puppetry and training institute set up by Faizaan Peerzada not only employs traditional puppeteers but also trains new people wanting to explore the field, Tasneem Peerzada said.
There is no fee for attending the festival that will continue until Sunday.
Published in The Express Tribune, November 27th, 2015.
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