Indian Storytelling Network
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.
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,