Everyone loves hearing a good story, believes performance storyteller-author Shaguna Gahilote, who in 2011 conceptualised ‘Kathakar’, an oral storytelling festival. Its eighth edition, featuring noted names in various genres, will kick off from November 16-18 at Indira Gandhi National Centre for the Arts (IGNCA). Morning sessions will be organised for school children while the evening sessions can be attended by people of all age groups. One of the highlights of the festival will include well-known spiritual figure Sadhguru, founder of Isha Foundation, turn into a storyteller during a session with musician Mohit Chauhan. Also Read – Add new books to your shelfFilmmaker Imtiaz Ali and musician Mohit Chauhan will come together to relive memories over kisse’s of Rocksar and kahani’s from childhood. Noted theatre artist Danish Hussain will present an adaptation of ‘Qissa Urdu Ki Aakhri Kitaab Ka’, originally written by Pakistani poet Ibn-e-Insha. Festival co-director Shaguna Gahilote will dramatise the story of Mahatma Gandhi, through a session on ‘Bapu Ki Kahani’, to mark 150 years of the Indian independence leader’s birth anniversary. International storytellers include Godfrey Duncan, who is man behind the storytelling revival in UK, Michal Malinowski, who has helped keep alive the art of storytelling in Poland and Xanthe Gresham and Oxford University alumnus who from teaching to drama went on to become a renowned storyteller. The overseas participants will narrate tales from Africa, Iran, Poland, Greece and India. Also Read – Over 2 hours screen time daily will make your kids impulsiveThe list of Indian storytellers will also include the Phad storytellers from Rajasthan, Pandavani by the powerhouse Ritu Verma, the energetic performance of Shivaji’s Tales in Powada singing, among others. The three-day festival will showcase some of the rare arts forms from India – the dolls theatre by Sudip Gupta from Kolkata; Phad, the scroll storytellers from Rajasthan; Powada, the vibrant storytelling of Shivaji’s tales; and Pandvani by Ritu Verma (who has collaborated with storytellers in the UK). Michal Malinowski, Director of The Storytelling Museum of Poland, will be bringing legends and myths from the European country. To commemorate 150 years of the birth of Mahatma Gandhi, Shaguna Gahilote will be performing ‘Bapu Ki Kahani’. Noted theatre artist Danish Hussain will present an adaptation of ‘Qissa Urdu Ki Aakhri Kitaab Ka’, originally written by Pakistani poet Ibn-e-Insha. “Getting children, and even adults, to pick up books is slightly hard. So I started doing these oral storytelling sessions in schools. They were hooked and started seeing books as treasures where stories could be found,” Gahilote, who helms the festival with her sisters Prarthana and Rachna Gahilote, said. Gahilote, who will perform “Bapu Ki Kahani” to commemorate 150 years of Mahatma Gandhi’s birth, reiterated that everyone loves to hear a good story and it is something everyone connects to, despite the age. The three-day festival will have spiritual guru Sadhguru, founder of Isha Foundation, in conversation with noted music composer-songwriter Mohit Chauhan, a statement by the organisers said. “Like music, storytelling is the simplest of art forms and also the greatest carrier and upholder of culture. Their shelf life is infinite too,” Chauhan said in a statement. “It will also curate Indian art forms such as the dolls theatre by Sudip Gupta from Kolkata; Rajasthan’s ‘phad’ (scroll) storytelling by Kalyan Joshi; ‘Powada’, the vibrant storytelling of Chhatrapati Shivaji Maharaj’s tales by Adinath Bapurao Vibhute; and the ‘pandavani’ tales (about the Pandava brothers of Mahabharata) by Ritu Verma,” the statement read. Noted theatre artist Danish Hussain will also present a contemporary adaptation of ‘Qissa Urdu Ki Aakhri Kitaab Ka’, originally written by Pakistani poet Ibn-e-Insha.