Thank you all for this journey of Wari which completed One Year!

Wari Jalsa is meant to celebrate and mark a year of the existence of Wari. It is a celebration of an initiative which aims to provide a platform to the lost art form of live narration of folk stories translated into Hindustani from across India and the world, as a tool to promote cultural insights and unity amongst diverse communities. At Wari Jalsa we bring on stage, folk stories from Karnataka, Andhra Pradesh, Tamil Nadu, Bihar, Russia, Manipur along with live folk songs. These stories are presented in different formats by various artists.


Wari is the curated storytelling creative arm of Octave which is reintroducing the art of storytelling for adults and for children. A one of its kind curated show of fascinating stories translated and adapted from different time zones and cultures performed by various artists.  The word Wari means story in Manipuri language.


Octave Foundation’s Wari started its journey in June 2016 and since then has reached over 12,000 people spanning across schools, literature festivals, and curated shows. We have put up 14 Wari performances at different spaces in New Delhi, Kumaon, Jaipur, Jodhpur and Gurgaon in this span of one year.

Hindustani/110 mins

The performance was held on June 30, 7:30 pm at the Little Theatre Group Auditorium, 1, Copernicus Marg, Mandi House, Opp. Doordarshan Bhavan, Near Connaught Place, New Delhi 110001.

This celebratory edition has the following six stories:


  1. Kuchh Nahin Badla Hai


Interweaving three small tales, one from mythology, one from south of India and one from a historical text, we showcase how inspite of the all-pervading talk about development and evolution, nothing has really changed from the beginning of the world till date for us humans.

The story from South of India is adapted from the book Bharat Ki Lok Kathaiyen translated by Kailash Kabir (translation of Folktales collected by A.K. Ramanujan).


Language: Hindi| Category: Folktale/ Mythological Duration: 15 mins

Written, adapted and performed by: Nitin Sukhija


II.  Chaar Paheliyaan


A tale about justice and defying power, this is an adaptation from a story titled Saat Baras Ki Bitiya from Roosi Lok Kathayein, a Russian folktale book. 
| Language: Hindustani | Duration: 15 mins


Adapted for the stage by: Anuja Jaiman and Saif Ali

Directed by: Saif Ali

III. Laal Paan Ki Begum

Set in Bihar, this story is a nuanced portrayal of the social fabric of village life in India. It is written by one of Hindi's great writers Phanishwar Nath ‘Renu’ who is best known for promoting the voice of contemporary rural India through the genre of Aanchalik Upanyaas or regional story.


Language: Hindi/Bhojpuri | Duration: 15 mins

Narrated by: Abhinav Sabyasachi


IV. Kabir Ki Vaani


Addressing the common feeling of angst towards religious intolerance and where it is taking us, this performance tries to ring in Kabir’s sane voice, imploring us to look within, for the one true God resides there.

Duration: 10 mins


Performed by:  Preeti Agarwal Mehta 

Mohd Faheem - vocals

Sudheer Rikhari - vocals
Supported by: L. Jayanta Singh, Ch. Biswajit Singh from the Manipuri music group Shyam Arts | Sahil from Manzil Mystics

V. Gunaahgaar Kaun

A political satire with timeless and universal appeal, versions of this story have been told across India.

Language: Hindi | Duration: 20 mins
Adapted and performed by: Valentina Trivedi


VI. Tapta


A story about how the fear of the unknown came into the world.

Adapted from a Manipuri folk tale by Nicky Chandam.

Duration: 20 mins | Narrated by: Ashish Paliwal


4. Artist profiles


1) Nitin Sukhija has dabbled in all forms of Media. He comes with a long association with television and films. Stage, though, remains his first love. A little vagabond-ish in nature, he is currently based out of Delhi. Nitin loves to travel and explore people and cultures. And yes, he loves to tell a story.


2) Anuja Jaiman is a Delhi based actor, journalist and Dastango. Born in Dehradun, she is currently pursuing acting and storytelling, and parenting a cat. In line with the vision of Wari, of which she is the co-founder, she wishes to use this medium as a conversation starter to reach people of all ages.


3)  Originally from Bihar, Abhinav Sabyasachi is the founder of 'Paltan', a theatre and art group in Delhi. Having worked extensively with theatre groups like IPTA, Sansaptak, Sehar Theatre Group, he has performed in Hindi, Bengali, English, Maithili, Urdu and French. A freelance journalist, writer, published poet, painter, he also conducts theatre workshops

4) Preeti Agarwal Mehta is a maverick freelance creative artiste who explores different mediums like theatre, film, movement, writing and photography. She is a special needs educator and counselor by training. She works with Karm Marg, an NGO for disadvantaged children.

5) Mohd Faheem is an acclaimed singer/actor/director, Urdu poet, gifted soprano and Sufi maestro with Sanidhya band. He is currently a senior theatre faculty at Shiv Nadar School, Noida and a Fellow of the prestigious TEST (Theatre for Education and Social Transformation) M.A. Program at Shiv Nadar University.

6) Sudheer Rikhari is an actor, singer, music composer. Has worked with TIE co. He is a Sangeet Shiromani Diploma from Delhi University. MA in Hindustani Vocal. Currently singing with Susmit Sen chronicles.

7) A teacher-educator and storyteller, Valentina Trivedi believes she must have been a curious darting squirrel in a previous birth and hasn't been able to shed those qualities! She enjoys writing in both Hindi and English and has written and performed stories for adults as well as children.

8) Ashish Paliwal is Delhi based  actor, voice over artist and theatre producer. He has been working in theatre and the arts since 1996.He is one of the founders of Barefoot Theatre which is a Delhi based production company, with a penchant for creating and producing fresh, original, Indian work.

Nicky Chandam is an avid chronicler of arts through her photographs and words. Originally from Manipur, now based in Delhi, she is the Founder Director of Octave Foundation which aims to connect North Eastern India with the rest of India through the medium of art and cultural exchanges.

Production Team: Varoon P. Anand, Himanshu Singh, Abhishek Nishad, Nitin Rohilla, Shobhit Tandon, Animesh Vishal, Pranjal Vaid, Harsh Singh, Pooja Singh, Khyati Narang.


We get by with a little help from our friends

Harfkaar Foundation, Mahima Mehra, Saif Mahmood, Bindaas Unlimited, Alka Jaiman, Rangeeta Murada, Anant Raina.

We are deeply grateful!


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