I’ve finally arrived at the lovely Pulavar family home. We got here early on a bright sunny Sunday after a 13 hour train ride, and were welcomed with a much appreciated dosa, coconut chutney and tea breakfast. Set just off the road to Shoranur, the home is part of a community of shadow puppeteers -all part of the same tolpavakoothu heritage. There are 4 households in the community which span several generations.
Puppetry is a huge part of life. As you drive up, you are greeted by many tolpava signs and decorations. The walls are filled with awards, bookcases with shadow play literature, puppets hang from the windows, and above the family home is a theatre and making studio (this will be my home for the next few weeks).