A Puppet Show
Tolubommalata is another best known and one of the earliest Telugu folk theatre forms of Andhra Pradesh. 'Tolu' means skin and Bommalata means puppet show. Ages before the days of the camera and the cinema, leather puppetry was the most popular form of rural entertainment in the Indian subcontinent.
Puppeteers manipulate these colourful puppets using sticks from behind a curtain. Here the static art forms are endowed with activity and mobility. They are in fact human caricatures.
Making Of A Puppet
Puppets are made from buffalo or sheep hide, they are bleached and tinted with local paints. The popular themes of these puppet shows are based on the Ramayana and the Mahabharata. The most popular figures are the heroes and villains of local mythology.
These puppets help in presenting the mythological stories in a very entertaining and a lively manner. The dolls are made of goatskin, which after being cured and dried is made translucent by a special process. The figures are beautifully painted with vegetable dyes. The Tolu Bommalata is now a dying art though a very popular form of entertainment in olden days.