Collaborations with The Community Library Project ~ Devika and Shahid

July, 2018 marked the beginning of yet another engagement with The Community Library Project, Panchsheel Vihar. Mihir and Shahid took ownership of this project consisting of 15 adolescents and pre-adolescents. Sundays became theatre days at the library, and the children got acquainted with the format of TUNE IN, REFLECTION and ENGAGEMENT. A long time was spent on preparing the actors’ bodies and helping them develop the skills for effective voice projection and dialogue deliv

Korika: The Wishing Kite ~Jasmine Sachdev

Khirkee is a vibrant community bustling with energy and people from various backgrounds living together, making art together and making purported  ‘ends’ meet together. The diversity helps one experience a manifold of images, scents, sensations and interactions all at once and more- this is what makes this community special. We, at Aagaaz, worked with the children from the community using drama through the story of Korika: The Wishing Kite. The book, A Kite Called Korika by S

Samvidhan Live Culminates~ Sanyukta

Commutiny the Youth Collective’s project Samvidhan Live interested us from the word go. It was developed while Nishant and I were still Changelooms fellows in October 2016  when our mentor Kanika Sinha, was knee-deep into developing a board game that facilitated young people’s experiential engagement with the Constitution. We were interested from the word go. However, of the many organisations participating in the game, we were only able to join in earlier this year and compl

Towards a Theatre of Possibility~ Sakhi Upadhyaya

When Sanyukta and I walked into a “capacity-building” workshop organised by Junoon Theatre in Mumbai, I did not know what to expect. It was my first “professional engagement” as a member of Aagaaz. I was jittery, nervous even. What capacities were we attempting to build? What actually awaited us was two days of deliberation, not so much as building but breaking apart what we understood ‘theatre’ to be. “Theatre for children” to be more specific: What did the assembling of the

Why Rituals? ~ Jasmine Sachdev

Since the last 6 months, thrice a week, on cool mornings or hot sunny afternoons, a bunch of kids at the Jamunwala Park stand in a circle, look into each other’s’ eyes, and walk and exchange places, or sit in a circle and catch an imaginary fish. These are just two of our rituals that we follow in each of our sessions with children at Khirkee as we make our first play together. Rituals are characteristic to a space. A ritual holds and binds the space and makes the space what

Unlearning Uncentred Restructured By Vardhna Puri

The Unlearning Uncentred sessions have been happening as you all know for the past 9 months. It is quite a sight to see children involved in playing games, which have been designed for them from a learning objective. These months have been interesting and have given us so many ideas to move forward. Let’s call that Unlearning Uncentred- Chapter 2. We now have onboard Noopur, who works in the area of education. With this we plan to structure our program and reach out to childr

Khirki Music Ensemble- Journey so far.. By Anirban Ghosh

What started as an experiment in Khirki (Somehow Khoj had trust in us that we will be able to create interesting programmes with this community) today has resulted in 3 full-fledged programmes for us at Aagaaz (Unlearning Uncentered, किस्से Connection and Khirki Music Ensemble). Khirki music ensemble emerged from the need to create and engage the hidden musicians from Khirki, and give them a platform to express and collaborate with other like-minded individuals from within th

Theatre with ‘The Community Library Project’, Panchsheel Vihar By Priiya

There is a deep sense of kinship to be working again with a group of participants who have already been led into a theatrical journey of sharing ideas and experiences, and it provides for a pleasant challenge. These workshops become a continuation of an educational exercise through theatre and play an important part in the evolution of thought itself.  The group of kids from The Community Library Project at Deepalaya at Panchsheel Vihar are in gears for the second series of w

Cooperative Games with Manish Kataria By Nishant Paul

To keep adding dimensions to our approach towards creation of the Unlearning Uncentered space in Khirki, it’s important for us to keep looking outwards at more methods of facilitation and the different spaces that already exist. We started the process last month and invited Manish, our friend and a facilitator for cooperative games, to play with us for a two-day workshop at C-5! It became a day’s workshop eventually due to some reasons. We still had copious amounts of learnin

Youth Club! A new group in the making By Sanyukta Saha

Each week a group of young people gather at C5 for a couple of hours of drama and play. The sessions are being facilitated by me and the six core group members who are now a part of the facilitator apprenticeship programme. The youth club began on the 13th of August with ten young people from Nizamuddin basti, Kale Khan, and Sundar Nursery. We are happiest about four of our erstwhile Aagaaz members coming back to us. They had to leave because of their family’s objection to th

Reflections from the mentors’ workshop on Viewpoints by Gunjan Gupta

Viewpoints is a philosophy translated into a technique for Training performers Building ensemble Creating movement for the stage Viewpoints is a set of names given to certain principles of movement through time and space; these names constitute a language for talking about what happens onstage. It is points of awareness that a performer or creator makes use of while working. There are Viewpoints of Time and Space. Time related viewpoints are: Tempo Duration Kinesthetic

Duniya Sabki- A module in progress.. by Devika and Nishant

‘Duniya Sabki’ was initially a much loved poem by Safdar Hashmi. Soon, it became Aagaaz’s most celebrated play that managed to effortlessly showcase the talents of the young theatre artists from Nizamuddin. Currently, it has transformed into a workshop module that is giving so many adolescents and pre-adolescents a platform to tell their stories. Devika and Nishant have been a part of ‘Team Aagaaz’ for a while now and have been observers in the workshops. We would like to sh

Core Group Members Talk…

SHAHID: मैं आगाज़ के बाकी बच्चो के साथ जून के महीने में DPS, श्रीनगर में एक Theatre Workshop co-facilitate करने गया था | मैंने वहा पर बहुत सारी बातें सीखी पर सबसे अच्छे से सिखा और समझा  के लोगो की सोच उनकी शक्ति होती है मैंने यह भी जाना के मै अपनी आज़ादी को अच्छे तरह से इस्तेमाल नहीं करता हूँ | अपने उम्र के और छोटे बच्चो के साथ काम करके और Facilitation करके मैंने यह नया सिखा की हर तरह की सोच को साथ लेकर चलना आसान नहीं होता है | पाँच-छ दिन साथ में Theatre करने के बाद वहाँ के ब

Kya Duniya Sabki Hai- Drama and performance in DPS Srinagar- By Sanyukta Saha

What became a gorgeous workshop and performance in Srinagar in the 2nd and 3rd week of June, began with a chance meeting with Sunanda Dhar while Anirban and Sanyukta were traveling through Rajasthan in December 2016. Sunanda and her family have been working tirelessly into creating a space full of music, drama, visual arts, and stories for the DPS Srinagar community. She has been single handedly creating the Special Education Department in the school.  A few more meetings in

Workshop on counseling skills for mentors- By Priyam Jain

Priyam (Nagina’s Mentor) is a trained counseling psychologist with a specialization in using art based therapies. Over the past few months while listening to the various narratives of Aagaaz mentors, she had an urge to share some concepts and ideas with the hope that they would empower both the mentors and their mentees to have more meaningful conversations. We had a great time interacting with her on 24th June and she has shared her reflections from this session. I was lucky

Reflections from the Leadership Journey Gathering- With Commutiny the Youth Collective- By Devika

We were invited for this Leadership Journey gathering and Nishant and I seemed to have no clue what we were getting into. We walked into this office in Kalkaji and luckily, things only got better. Commutiny the Youth Collective, popularly known as CYC is an association of youth led and youth engaging organizations across India working towards promoting empowering spaces for youth leadership. Their objective is to help people move towards the needs of the society while continu

Puppetry workshop with Katkatha by Ismail Shaikh

Ismail and Shahid from our core group at Nizamuddin got an opportunity to participate in a week long, puppet making workshop with Anurupa Roy at Katkatha. They seem to have learnt a lot and we have thoroughly enjoyed the process of listening to their new stories and insights. Ismail has shared a small reflection that offers us a glimpse into this new world of puppet theatre. मैं कटकथा में एक workshop  के लिए गया था जहाँ पर मैने Bunraku Puppets के बारे में सीखा| इन puppets को

Duniya Sabki Facilitation Experience

Aagaaz collaborated with Deepalya Community Library where four of our core group members from Hazrat Nizamuddin Basti co-facilitated their first theatre workshop. This resulted in a performance called ‘Duniya Sabki’. Nagina, Zainab, Jasmine and Nagma share their experiences of facilitation by answering some basic questions.How did they feel? नगीना: यह एक बहुत अच्छा अनुभव था क्यूंकि पहली बार मैंने अपने से कम उम्र के बच्चो के साथ काम किया | Lead करना थोडा मुश्किल था लेकिन मैंने

Kya Duniya Sabki Hai?- Aagaaz offers its first Theatre Workshop at Deepalaya’s Community Library in

We had heard so much about the fantastic space that writer Mridula Koshy has created in the widing streets of Shekh Sarai that we knew we had to visit. After a couple of months of email exchanges, Nishant and Sanyukta walked into this orange canopied space in October. It was one of those low inspiration, questioning one’s life and work kind of days. As they started talking to Mridula however, inspiration started crawling back in. It is no ordinary library that just lends book