Natyarambha’s young storytellers bring Kutty Kahani – Eternal Stories

 Natyarambha’s young storytellers bring Kutty Kahani – Eternal Stories

Life in 2020 was all about meeting and learning through the virtual medium. Schools were shut and online classes became the new normal. Children started to study the online way and studies took a new avatar, one we had never imagined it to be. Like educational institutions, dance institutes and music schools too shifted to the virtual medium. After all, the guru-shishya parampara has to carry on.

Among many senior music and dance gurus who adopted and adapted the digital medium so that their shishyas do not stay away from the craft was Padma Shri Dr Ananda Shankar Jayant. So, she along with her team at Natyarambha, started new video series, Kutty Kahani – Eternal Stories, Young Storytellers. It was in 2017 that Dr Ananda created and produced Natayrambha, a Bharatanatyam practice app that was praised by gurus and digital leaders alike and has followers across the world. Natyarambha is also a digital platform that has been creating unique content on arts, inspirational videos, learning capsules, motivational talks, and sharing of Indic knowledge. And Kutty Kahani was their latest offering.

Ananda Shankar Jayant photo by G Murali (left) and Kutty Kahani poster

Talking of her initiative, Dr Ananda had told me then, “As adults, we have often been concerned about young India’s disconnect with our civilisational roots. It is often noticed that this important Indic cultural and civilisational knowledge connect is side-stepped due to punishing work schedules of parents and formal school education not providing this knowledge. Yet the streams of enduring Indic knowledge continue to be taught and learnt, by generations of young Indians. A stream that begins, when young toddlers, learn of these tales, from grandparents and parents, and when some of them learn of this cultural ethos, as students of India’s myriad arts. We, at Natyarambha, thought: wouldn’t it be wonderful if we could bring this knowledge base to the fore, and thus inspire others too? Thus was born Kutty Kahani — a short story video series. She excitedly said, “Prime Minister Narendra Modi’s vision of the importance of storytellers and storytelling to build values, as shared during the Mann Ki Baat on September 27, 2020, inspired us.’

Brief insight into Kutty Kahani

  1. A series of short videos of stories from India that aims to create a digital bank of Indian stories and storytelling of Indic knowledge and wisdom, encapsulated in brief videos further embellished with animation and digital design – thereby connecting tradition to technology.
  2. A daily series of short video premieres, of stories from India, of India’s timeless wisdom and knowledge, of storytelling and performance by enormously talented young children between the ages 6 and 13.
  3. A multi-art, multilingual, (with subtitles as needed) storytelling by young storytellers from across India, Malaysia, UK and USA, bringing to us India’s ancient wisdom, creating, ready to access digital Indic content for children.
  4. Kutty Kahani stories are from the spectrum of India’s culture – stories from the epics, sthala purana of temples, rich tales on the origins of music and dance, handicrafts, folk tales, inspirational poets, Bhakti poets and poetry etc.
  5. An absolutely new way of sharing India’s timeless stories and eternal wisdom; as understood and internalised by young children, through chanting, music, dance, poetry, puppetry, acting and of course storytelling; in short sized video capsules, (each video is about 5 minutes long) in a unique format, of short stories, told by young children, yet making it a must watch for child and adult alike.
  6. Kutty Kahani showcases the possibility of a simple and digitally enabled way of sharing Indic content, a new way of how India’s eternal knowledge can be transmitted in a simple and easily accessible way, that will help the young of India to have their cultural and civilisational roots and yet reach for the sky.
  7. Kutty Kahani series premiered on November 20, 2020, and concluded on December 31, 2020 (Season 1) with one video released every day.

If you and your children have not seen this 55 episodic series, you have missed out on something informative and interesting. Log into the app and experience the magic Kutty Kahani has to offer.


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