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Indian Storytelling Network

 

Kolkata

 

 


Storytellers (and other Story Experts)
in alphabetical order

 

 

1)  Kavita Gupta

2)  Priyanka Chatterjee

3)  Nidhi Gujral / Pip & Squeak

4)  Shreya Biswas

5)  Sristi Sengupta



 

1
Kavita Gupta.

     Kavita Gupta is a theatre artist and storyteller.  She directs Mirror Workshops, which provides theatre training for children.  Mirror Workshops' tagline is, "Discovery of the inner being". Kavita uses theatre techniques to help children increase their self-confidence and develop their personalities.  She tries to create out-of-the-box experiences for workshop participants, so the participants can come out of their shells and perform expressively and spontaneously.

     Kavita's background in the study of Mass Communication and the Montessori teaching method helps her to interact with young people.  A voracious reader, she carries written tales everywhere she goes.  She combines her theatre experience with the storytelling art to not just tell stories, but to perform them, bringing the characters to life.

     Kavita regularly performs in bookstores and schools.  She acts in other directors' stage productions.  And, of course, she herself often directs children in stage productions.  Storytelling and acting are the needs of the hour, as digitization is taking over many children.  We need to give children the experience of their own imaginations, because their lives and thought processes have in many cases become too structured from the outside.

Contact info:

91630 43709

guptakavita8279@gmail.com

https://www.facebook.com/mirrorworkshops

 

 

2

Priyanka Chatterjee.

Priyanka is a Performance Storyteller, Art Curator, and Theatre Maker with special interests in Storytelling in Education, Theatre for Young Audiences (TYA), Theatre in Education (TIE), and Theatre for Social Change.  She runs "Wild Strawberry," a company that helps everyone "Explore his/her own Wild Strawberry patch ... the underrated gem of a place within each of us."  Wild Strawberry creates experiences through Art, Theatre for Young Audiences, and Performance Storytelling.

     Priyanka coaches Professional Storytellers, Teachers, Parents, Corporates, and others regarding ways to use Storytelling as effective communication.  She tickles the curious minds of children, showing them ways: 1) to make up their own stories from daily events, 2) to tell stories using Dramatised Storytelling techniques, and 3) to add twists to age-old stories and re-tell them from new perspectives.  She has been instrumental in assisting a fund-raising endeavour for the Penang International Kids Storytelling Festival, Malaysia; and has been selected as an International Storyteller for this Festival.  Her latest achievements are paper presentations on "Theatre for Social Change," at Cradle of Creativity, Cape Town, South Africa; and the 19th Assitej World Congress for Theatre for Young Audiences.  She regularly performs at venues in Kolkata such as Oxford Bookstore, Starmark Quest, and Starmark Mani Square.  She also conducts regular sessions on Speech and Drama techniques, and on Reading and Storytelling, for children in schools and other organisations.  She does Hospital Storytelling, using stories for healing and reconciliation, especially for disabled and terminally ill patients.

     Priyanka is an Electronics and Instrumentation Engineer, has earned an MBA, and has spent long tenures at TCS, and Cognizant Technology Solutions.  As a Business Analyst she used to "tell stories" about products while working with one of the leading newspapers in eastern India, Anandabazar Patrika.  That is when she realised, "If stories about inanimate things could be this interesting -- just imagine how engaging stories about animate characters could be!"  This is how she started telling stories about animals and nature; human beings and their bondings; and dragons and fairies.  She is devoted to helping to provide a safe and respected space for Storytelling in India, and to spreading understanding about ways Storytelling can have positive influences on people.  One of her current projects is, "Global Stories, shared locally," which involves inviting International Tellers to come to India to share their cultures and traditional tales, enhancing cross-cultural exchange.

     Photos of Priyanka are at,

Photo 1.

Photo 2.

Photo 3.

Photo 4.

Photo 5.

Contact info:

98304 72605

wildstrawberry.arts@gmail.com

https://m.facebook.com/WildStrawberry.Arts

 

 

3

Nidhi Gujral / Pip & Squeak

Nidhi is a finance professional by qualification, but the storytelling bug in her was always struggling to surface having grown up among books and stories.  It finally (and thankfully) had its way once motherhood happened to her and she started enjoying going back to her own childhood tales with her son.  That's when she decided to venture into storytelling as a profession and discovered her natural affinity towards children.  Thus, in the year 2019 Pip & Squeak was born.

 

As Pip & Squeak, she uses her stories to facilitate literacy, encourage thinking, incite creativity, and make learning fun by often coupling them with stories, and engaging crafts and other activities -- all to provide an experience that delights kids and parents alike.

 

Pip & Squeak has since performed (online and offline) in numerous renowned schools, libraries, and children's carnivals.

 

Nidhi has also collaborated with some publication houses where she retells folktales and even lends her voice to their audio libraries.

 

Her self-developed STEM (Science, Technology, Engineering, and Mathematics) module has appealed to and helped several children.  Here she brings an element of fun to these important subjects by emphasising their applications in everyday life through stories and hands-on activities.  The results being, the children often don't even realise when the knowledge and skills are etched in their minds!

 

Recently conducted programmes include:

 

"But why?"

This series of 12 workshops mostly consisted of "Pourquoi stories" ("Why? stories").  The series is conducted with an intent to bust some myths and to educate children on the fun facts of the selected animal.  Each story session is combined with an activity and the children are invited to exhibit their creativity, all of which reiterates the learnings of the session.

 

STEM workshops

These Science, Technology, Engineering, and Mathematics workshops are perfect blends of stories, and activities based on stories, that teach age-specific concepts in order to ensure long-term retention.

 

A photo is here.

 

Videos -- https://youtube.com/c/PipSqueakstories

 

Contact

98300 21457

pipandsqueak19@gmail.com

https://www.facebook.com/pipnsqueak

https://www.instagram.com/pip_nd_squeak

 

 

4
Shreya Biswas.  

Shreya is a trained storyteller, a story lover, and a firm believer in the power of stories.  She is the founder and director of Katharangam.  A graduate in chemistry from Calcutta University, her love for children made her an early childhood educator.  An alumna of Children's Little Theatre, Kolkata, it was a natural transition for her from being a teacher, to being a storyteller and performer.  Shreya has an amazing ability to make an instant connection with children.  She often uses visual art as an aid for storytelling, and her performances are a treat for the senses, as she brings her stories alive with songs, picture cards, glove puppets, and paintings.  Shreya  trains teachers to help integrate stories into education.  She also trains aspiring storytellers, both adult and children.  Shreya spreads the magic of stories through her dream initiative, Katharangam.

Contact

99002 34613

katharangam.storytelling@gmail.com

www.katharangam.com

 

 

5

Sristi Sengupta.

Sristi is a young and emerging performance artist trained in on-stage categories such as dance, drama, storytelling and recitation.  Besides the phenomenal skill of engrossing her audience in classical as well as modern performances, she is a healer up-close and personal.  She is a certified listener at the ‘Mood Cafe’, an offline and online centre for conversational counselling in Ahmedabad.

      Her biggest achievement in storytelling is securing the position of the top 10th finalist in India Film Project’s 9th season of storytelling challenge.  The finalists had to compete among 15,000+ participants.  The event was held in Mehboob Studios, Mumbai in October 2019.  Sristi has also performed at other prestigious stages in Mumbai and Kolkata.  She is also a certified BharatNatyam dancer trained under the ‘Pracheen Kalakendra’.

     Her passion for storytelling and recitation currently has her interested in studying the therapeutic implication of words, stories and poems on people, especially on the ones suffering from trauma, stress or other mental complications.  ‘Consolation is an art, motivation its canvas’, are the words Sristi is living by while performing before audiences from all spheres of time and space.  It is believed that humans always look for familiarity everywhere, therefore she aims at telling stories or reciting poems in the language most acceptable to the audience.  This sparks an instant connection.  The stories are told in Hindi, English and Bengali as per the audience’s convenience.

     Sristi aims at working with charity programs, schools, orphanages and old-age homes to promote a de-stressed atmosphere.  She is also interested in performing at literary events or shows as well as in providing individual support via one-on-one conversations both online and offline, motivational speaking sessions and conversational trainings.  The services can be availed from all over India and the world because guess what, she is a travel buff too!

     Experience – 10+ years of stage performing, including 4+ years of storytelling and recitation.

Contact info

80130 09009

sristisgofficial@gmail.com

Website -- https://msha.ke/cicada7.poetry

Instagram -- https://www.instagram.com/cicada7.poetry/?hl=en