Manchadi – A new kind of kids animation from the Gods own country
Zinemaya is bringing you critically acclaimed and most loved children’s animation video from India. Manchadi (Manjadi) video series comes with great animation and slew of worthy characters singing folk songs and telling stories which are taken from the Panchatantra and Aesop’s fables, and also folk stories from different parts of India. Click here to download Manchadi Volume one
Onnanam kochuthumbi ente koode porumo nee…
Ninte koode ponnalo enthallam tharumenikku…’
Do these lines strike a chord? Yes, these are the lines of a
Malayalam folk song that grandmothers of yesteryears used to sing to children. Today, many of these couplets and rhymes are on the verge of fading out of our lives as a new generation of kids tune into English nursery rhymes and songs.
However, thanks to Madhu K.S. and his city-based team, these folk songs and rhymes have been given a new lease of life by compiling them into an animation video series and thus was born `Manjadi.’
And once again tiny tots are swinging to `Kakke kakke koodevide’ and retelling the stories of the hare and the tortoise narrated in Manjadi. With a cute little animated girl Twinkle as its narrator, Manjadi transports young minds to a world of animals and birds, songs and stories that also convey a moral to two.
The CDs come as music to the ears of young parents. “There is something fresh and different about Manjadi. Both my children watch it everyday,” says Sindhu Rajesh. Although the CD banks on old rhymes and stories, what makes it unique is brilliant presentation, good music, interesting characters, simple dialogues and cute animation. The success of the venture is a vindication of Madhu. K.S.’ conviction that made him choose the road less travelled.
Madhu, a postgraduate in Product Design from IIT Bombay and an Electronics Engineer from College of Engineering, Trivandrum, came up with the idea of doing something creative and unique in the area of animation when he was working with C-DIT.
Says Madhu, “The field of animation and multimedia was throwing unlimited opportunities and we had this urge to do something different Animation was just restricted to making an animation video on fairytales or on something that was already there. But we wanted to experiment.”
So, he, along with a few of his colleagues in C-DIT, quit their job and decided to tread a new path. They started Hibiscus Design through which they did many projects and eventually evolved the concept of Manjadi. Initially, Manjadi was a 30-minute kids’ programme on Kairali TV. However, the concept novel had to be stopped after a year owning to financial problems.
“But the programme was a success among kids and so they decided to compile it in a cd. Thus `Manjadi’ was launched as a CD during a flower show in 2005 during the flower show.
This volume was also well received in the market and the team started getting feedback from children and their parents. “I remember a father telling me that he had to buy a new DVD player when his computer had some problems because his daughter wanted to see `Manjadi,”‘ adds Madhu.
Folk tales too
The team has now produced `Poopy.’ Poopy is a cute and adorable puppy. Through the puppy, the makers have tried to explain many scientific phenomena through simple stories.
In `Poopy,’ we have tried to convey seven different ideas through seven stories with the help of Poopy, the main protagonist,” explains Madhu. The scripts of `Manjadi’ and `Poopy’ have been written by Manu K.S, who quit his job as a lecturer in Mahatma Gandhi University to join his brother’s venture.
The 17-member team of Hibiscus Design also has Madhu’s colleagues from C-DIT like Sunil Kumar B, who looks into the animation side. “There is a value system that we are trying to incorporate in `Manjadi’ and `Poopy.’ There are no stories of violence and cruelty in these series. It’s the Indian culture that we are trying to incorporate into the series,” adds Manu.
In `Poopy,’ we have introduced a scientific temper and an inquisitive nature. We are planning a series on a cat family, a humorous series intended to shape the behavioural pattern of children,” says Deepu Prasad A.L. who heads the technical and design side.
The third volume of `Manjadi,’ a compilation of folk tales from different parts of the country, is also in the making. Madhu and his team have now set their sights on the global market by presenting local content in a new media and format.
– Kerala, southern most state of India also called Gods own country
– Review by Jaya Smitha Menon , the Hindu
Manchadi and Poopy are available for download at zinemaya.com