Filmmaker Imtiaz Ali, music composer Shantanu Moitra and singer Mohit Chauhan are among the eminent personalities who will be attending the 2022 edition of the oral storytelling festival 'Kathakar' here. Organized by cultural forums Nivesh and Babaji Music at the Sunder Nursery, the two-day festival will kick off on May 20 and will feature rare folk stories as well as native tales from Rajasthan and Gujarat alongside Italy, the UAE, and Poland.
The 10-session event will also be attended by Law Minister Kiren Rijiju, who beside releasing the book "Curious Tales from the Desert" during the inaugural day will also be seen conversing with Ali, Moitra and Chauhan in one of the highlight sessions, titled 'Kissey, Kahani aur Mountain'.
Touted to be India's only oral storytelling festival, Kathakar was launched in 2011 in memory of Thakur Vishwa Narain Singh, a noted journalist and the first Braille editor of India.
"This year we bring to you the stories from the sand dunes spread across Rajasthan, Gujarat, Multan, Sindh .. We have storytellers from India and Poland who tell folktales spanning centuries and different parts of the world," Gahilote, the curator of the festival, said in a statement.
"It is not just a means to spread stories, bring different people and cultures together but also aims to revive the dying art of storytelling as people are restricting themselves to visual medium which is killing the imagination," she added.
Theatre artist Sikanadar Khan, Sanchi Peswani and international storytellers Paola Balbi from Italy and Michal Malinowski from Poland are also among the known names taking part in the festival.
Khan will be narrating the folk tales of Rajasthan, including the ones from Padma Shri and Sahitya Akademi Award winner Vijaydan Detha, while Italian artist Paola Balbi will be narrating stories of the deserts of the Middle East and from Italy at the festival.
The other highlights of the event include a session on 'Stories from the Himalayas' by Moitra, and 'Kissagoi' with Ali in conversation with Chauhan, who is also the patron of the festival.
The festival will come to an end with a Rajasthani folk music performance by Mohd Rafiq Langa and group on May 21.