As a trained teacher with qualifications in the areas of education and the performing arts, Usha Venkatraman is a self-taughtpuppeteer. A multi-faceted personality,Usha’s growing interest in young children led her to experiment with puppets. Puppetry became a hobby and her experiment with Indian puppets led her to use puppets as an educational tool. Usha’s engaging and interactive puppetry sessions, which are filled with strong drama, music, movement and singing, both educate and entertain her audience. Her lively and dramatic storytelling performances keep people of all ages spellbound. She uses glove-puppets as her medium of story telling and her repertoire includes a range of Indian folk-tales, stories from Indian Mythology, folk-tales from around the world and true-life incidents.

Usha has performed at schools, cultural associations, social clubs, Museums, Book Stores, NGOs, Children’s wings at Hospitals, College Faculty, University Students, Kala Ghoda festival, Mumbai, Bookroo Childrens International Festival, Delhi and International Storytelling Festival in India & Abroad. There has been no limit so far. She is also a story consultant for Various Organisations and has even performed for Doordarshan on live TV. Usha has a tale for all seasons..........

Usha has conducted workshops on story telling at schools, educational institutions, NGOs etc.

Value based education through Puppets is her area of interest and she is always on the lookout for new ideas and concepts to teach through puppets.

QUALIFICATIONS

  • Graduate in Commerce from Bombay University.
  • Personnel Management from Tata Institute of Social Science, Bombay
  • Early childhood educator (ECCE) from Bombay University
  • Training in Psycho-analysis and observational studies in young children – Bombay Chapter of the Tavistock Clinic, England.
  • Training program for volunteers in social work with focus on “work with children” at Tata Institute of Social Science, Bombay.
  • Certificate in personal counseling from Institute of Human Technology, Mumbai.
  • Dramaturgy in Puppetry – workshop conducted by Michael Meschke in New Delhi.
  • Workshop in storytelling at the Academy of storytelling – Kathalaya, Bangalore (affiliated to International Story Telling Centre, Tennesse, U.S.A.).
  • Member of UNIMA INDIA.
  • Life Member of Association of Writers & Illustrators for Children, India(AWIC).
  • Member of the Indian Story Telling Network.