Saturday, December 26, 2009

Ananda~A new film

Ananda is a new film production which the Bornfree is currently working on. It is a biography of all our children~Anand, Gowri, Gaja, Srinivas D, and many more. It is a two-hour-future film. All children are acting in this.

A  n  a  n  d  a
a biographical film on  street kids.
Story. Screenplay Music Cinematography
              John Devaraj

Ananda is a biographical work on a  street kids. Ananda, having been sent out of school worked as a tender coconut chopper forced into this job by his drunken father. Unable to do his homework, he is battered by his teacher. He runs away from school. Joins a bar and restaurant, learns drinking and smoking from his adult customers.

He sees his father among all the drunks; one day he smashes a glass of alcohol on the ground gets kicked out of his job. As he is walking away, he sees a petty shop, He looks at the sweets and is going for it when he sees the cash box open. He grabs as much change as he can , when the man shouts “thief, thief…”, he runs and runs but gets caught. He is jailed. He becomes a confirmed thief. When released, he meets a gang of kids, In the meeting they share their histories.

Ananda now a veteran of many thefts spots a bag full of shining objects in the compound. He scales the wall, grabs and runs. They are real  empty brass bullet shells meant for guns It was an auxiliary unit.  of  an ammunition factory

Ananda sells the bullets for its brass value As he walks across a grave yard, a rival gang bashes him up and grabs all his money.  He is subsequently arrested. When he comes out of the jail Ananda realizes crime does not pay. He tries to change his friends through dance, art music. He changes fist fighting feuds to artistic challenges, dancing, sports, drumming, stilt walking, painting, rock climbing. Soon a beautiful culture of freedom and liberation is discovered. As they are moving on in life, they meet a sculptor who is turning a stone into a beautiful figure of art.. He  brings them together through their own talents. Some become painters sculptors, Dancers etc

They are now cycling and enjoying a new found freedom and they are seeing places. On Republic Day, 26th January, they visit a air show of the Nation. They joining the thronging thousands and shocked tp see a whole lot of guns, war planes, blatant display of killing instruments.. The scene in frightening!. Bullets and missiles and every shape and size ready to kill. Half a million people are applauding and cheering the thrilling flying machines.

They are angry. As the planes go up and down, they are catching them in the sky and breaking them.
There is flashback of their lives. The scene is frightening. Bullets and missiles and every shape and size ready to kill. Half a million people are applauding and cheering the thrilling flying machines They want to change this!  No money for schools, all the money for war. As they return they stop near a factory and workers agitating for better wages It is a spring factory making springs for AK47 guns! Ananda who is the greater criminal me that stole empty shells or those make real killing instruments, the merchants of death. They are more determined to change it. They decide to free all working children from toil. They want to express this  Art music and Dance. To produce a culture of liberation. And they become talented Artists. Students Gaja has become a Gymnast. Santhosh is Moon walking with his horse, Prashanth a sculptor.

Ananda and Durga have joined a ballet school and are dancing to music Ode to Joy.

The Making of Ananda
The Bornfree Art school will produce the film through a cooperative venture..This through small contributions from Children, Youth and people who believe in the cause of Children’s Liberation. The film will be made on a HDV format. and a reverse tele cine { RTC} conversion made in 35 mm film format for purpose of showing in cinema houses and festivals.

The filming shot over a period of 10 days requires Rs 50 000. {1000 Euros}
A two hour RTC costs 1200000 INRS {20 000Euros} to be considered in the II stage.} If a hundred friends could contribute Rs 500 each the film can be completed. We begin shooting Ananda from the 28th of November. 2009.

We appeal for your support.

Contributions by Cheque  in India to
Gondwanaland Foundation.
21 2nd cross GH Layout 3rd Block East Jayanagar Bangalore 560011

Looking forward to your support

Saturday, December 5, 2009

Son of Michelangelo- Painting & Sculpture Exhibition by John Devaraj

Dear Friends,

Please do come to Son of Michelangelo- Painting & Sculpture Exhibition by John Devaraj. The inauguration of the exhibition is on the 7th of December 2009 at 8pm at the F&B on the St. Mark's Road. Please do come. We will be presenting a small performance by the Bornfree Art School.


Tuesday, October 20, 2009

Gaja goes back to the school~Latest News

On the 20th of October 2009, after having been in the Bornfree for the past one and a half years, Gaja started to go to the formal school, Parikram school in Jayangar, Bangalore. Sold for the price of Rs.500 by his parents, he came along with 25 Bihari bonded labour children to work in the bag company in Bangalore. He had been stitching school bags for five years, being in the dark inside of the factory near Magestic. One day he hailed from the owner and came to the city station nearby where he met Elisabeth who brought him to the Bornfree. The journey of his success has started; joined the gymnastic classes at the Stadium, after a year, he is now representing Karnataka in the gymnastic competition. He joined several informal education schools. Everywhere he goes, his interests in learning are unlimited. He is extremely interested in dance, theater, drawing, painting, music apart from gymnastic. He wakes up at 4 am, leaves home at 5 am to go to the class. He may miss breakfast, but not a gymnastic class! Recently, John has taken him to the Parkram, which runs ICSE based education. Of course, he became already well-known among all kids because he did saumersauts! He wrote the exam and passed! Today was the ever first day of his schooling. His dream is to go back to Bihar to meet his parents one day...... He is currently working on a dance piece called "Two Little Crown" about circus children of the streets. He is going to stage on the 14th of November, Children's Day, at the Lalit Ashok Hotel.


Sunday, October 11, 2009

Che Che Screening~14th October 2009

Dear friends,
The Bornfree Art school in partnership with Alliance franchise invites you to the 
screening of the film  Che Che
at the Alliance Francaise, 
Thimmaiah Road, Bangalore
on 14th October 6pm,

story, screenplay, Music, Direction 
John Devaraj

produced by 
the Bornfree Art school

The film show will be followed by a discussion by the child actors of the bornfree all former working children.
Please come and bring your friends along

Che Che is a cinematic expression in the style and genre of Sir Charles Chaplin Master of mime. After Charlie Chaplin; there has not been such quality cinema, mime, music with just subtitles and no dialogues.
This style made it possible to communicate some of the most intense problems of the world like Fascism, War, poverty, homelessness, and child workers and so on. You can laugh the whole way through and have tears and fears of the system that you became part of.

It was Chaplin who through his work Great Dictator who made the most profound critique of Hitler. The kid was a stunningly reality cinema, highly entertaining yet a damning statement on the conditions of working children, on poverty homelessness…
 I sculpted Chaplin, which stands as stone tribute to in Bangalore to become the world’s largest existing image of the great Maestro!
Chaplin’s biggest lesson to me was to make people laugh and laugh until they can cry and act for the revolution which can free all toiling children.
Now I have made films in his style

Che Che in the film is a character who is proactive towards working children an artist like Michelangelo and Chaplin. He believes in social justice.
Che Che is also showing the conditions of working children in India through humor. It shows the stupidity of an adult world which denies children their childhood.
Che Che is a nonviolent silent communication in a violent world.
It is in the style of Gandhi and Luther King our gurus.
Three episodes  Original format HDV , Silent with subtitles in English, Tamil, Malayalam, Kannada, Italian, French, Spanish, Japanese are available for screening
Please forward invitation to friends

Thursday, October 8, 2009

Cycle Journey

The Bornfree people will begin a cycle journey for fun and fishing to the fishing camp, cauvery rivera  90 kms cycles to the fishing camp 

Starting  10th October,Saturday, 6am
events at Camp Fishing, cooking, eating, playing football, Volley ball,musiac,Dance, swimming.
Camping around  a camp fire.
Sunday 11th October departure to Bangalore 11 am.

Requirements: bring your own sleeping bags contribute towards cooking material like Rice, wheat floor, sugar, milk, snacks, limes, biscuits, vegetables and ofcourse some money for the fuel for support vehicles.
Starting from Bornfree Studios , Avalahalli, Narayana Nagar near Gublalla petrol bunk on Kanakapura road.{call from here 9886306366/9886011830}

Sunday, October 4, 2009

Children follow Ahimsa ~ Gandhi Jayanthi

"We want Gandhi, we don't want Hitler! We don't want bombs, but we want pencils." So did the children of the Bornfree shout and appeal! The Bornfree children have staged "No Fat Boy Again" at the Town Hall, on the 2nd of October 2009, remembering the140th birthday of Mahatma Gandhiji. John Devaraj has created the actual size of the bomb ( FAT MAN ) which was dropped on Nagasaki. Children carried this huge bomb on their heads. One of the actors, Subramani, 15, stated to the public, "Our nation is spending too much money on wars and creating atomic bombs, but 134 million children like us have no access to schools. We want pencils in our hands."

India has now 17 nuclear reactors out of which, 7.7 % is concentrating in Tamil Nadu. Dr. Pugazhandi who is running his own clinic in Kalpakkam, 60km from Chennai, has noticed the pandemic of cancer cases among his patients.  He has been finding the facts of the strong connection between the leakage of Radioactive Iodide from the Kalpakkam Atomic Reprocessing Plant and his cancer patients. At Kalpakkam, the media has reported that babies without legs and arms are being born, which is closely due to the leakage of the Power Plant. Maximum life of nuclear reactor is 40 years, but resulting waste will remain for 48,000years. The Indian Government has entered the new foreign nuclear relationship with the US Government, aiming to create 25000MW by the year of 2020. However, the question of safety remains unsolved. ( Reference; Press Release by the NAAM). http;//

Mr. E P Menon has joined our performance. He is the ever peace lover of India. At the age of 24, he started to walk from Delhi to appeal the disarmament of nuclear weapons among nations. He walked up to the Indo-Pakistan border but at that time he had neither a passport nor a visa. He has written a letter to Mr. Nehru in 1962 and Nehru has sent a passport to Menon after sometime. However, Menon crossed the border without a document with a huge welcome from Pakistani people. Pakistani President Ayub Khan has publicly announced his peace journey in Pakistan. "Everywhere i was welcomed by the people. That time there was no political conflict between India and Pakistan. They are all our brothers and sisters." After Pakistan, he went to Afganistan and Russia. When he entered Paris, the French Government arrested him and put him in jail for four days. Then, he proceeded to London, America, finally he went to Tokyo. His final destination was Hiroshima, reaching on the 6th of August, the day when the Atomic Bomb was dropped on. He walked with 7 Japanese young people from Tokyo to Hiroshima. In August 1964, his journey of 10,000km was completed. He came back to India and wrote about his journey. The book is called Footprints on Friendly Roads, which is yet to be published in India.

Now there is a big peace movement by the National Alliance of Anti-Nuclear Movement (NAAM) by the people. The Bornfree Art School is also joining this wave and as young people and children, we will work on this nuclear issues. E P Menon said that when children participate actively in the peace movement, will be there a big change in the world.



Holiday Schedule 2nd to 14th October 2009

Dear Friends,

The schedule of the next two weeks will be according to the below; many kids are having Dasara holidays;

11:00~12:00; Study ( any subjects ) at Puttanahalli
12:00~13:00; PC and Internet at Puttanahalli
13:00~14:00; Lunch
15:00~17:00; Theater Workshop at the Bornfree Studio(BFS)
17:00~18:00; Sports at the BFS
18:30~20:00; Dance at the BFS

10th and 11th of Oct; Picnic by cycling

Anyone who wants to join us to teach or just enjoy or whatever, please contact us by email or phone

Thursday, October 1, 2009

Gandhi Day

The Bornfree Art school will celebrate the birth of Mahatma Gandhi on the 2nd October 2009at 10 am in front of the Town hall and in the environs of the sculpture park of Ravindra kalakshetra, JC Road, Bangalore.

1 There  will be a dramatic presentation of Gandhi breaks the bomb by the children of Bornfree Art school.
2 A scene from Shiroi Hana( White flowers regarding the bombing of Hiroshima Nagasaki/
3 Ms Mioi Nakayama of Hiroshima will render the Article 9 of the Japanese constitution  which prohibits Japan from maintaining armed forces., that which is the direct translation of the values of Ahimsa taught to us by
4 There will be songs and talks by liberated peace loving children of the Bornfree.

The Nuclear warheads proliferation of the world has reached an intolerable self destruction peak of causing wide spread poverty, hunger and the creation of 246 million working a children of the world.. Half of them are in India.! Every tenth Indian is a working child.150 million children in India will not reach the 7th std said the prime Minister.
That is because there is no money for education , but abundantly available for war.
India spends 23142.22 crores on education and Rs 141 703 crores on defense to even an ever increasing budget.10 nations in the world have stockpiled 23 000 nuclear war heads capable of destroying the earth a million times., depleting its resources bringing about a climate change unfit for human survival.
Here is the stockpile:  Russia 5830, USA 5735, China 200!250, UK 200, Israel 200,
India 45~75, Pakistan 40~50 North Korea 1, Iran ?
The Practise of Ahimsa and Non violence is the only solution to the alleviation of Indian poverty, hunger and illiteracy.

The Bornfree undertook the Peacebycycle in 2008 on the theme from Bangalore to Lahore one ore one heart. Pedaling 2800 kms this was called the second Dandi March. Gaja 9 year old student of the Bornfree was the leader of the expedition. We made salt at Dandi to commemorate the values of Ahimsa .7000 letters of love were collected from the children of  India written to the children of Pakistan, which will be read on  Gandhi’s 140th Birthday

I request you to be present at the event to provide publicity for the issue and to take AHIMSA forward

John Devaraj,
Bornfree Art school,,  9886306366

Monday, September 28, 2009

Gandhi's Children against the Bombs

The Bornfree is organizing a street performance on the birthday of Mahatma Gandhiji, on the 2nd of Ocboter, 2009. The Atomic Bomb is eating children and nuclear-armed nations are killing them. Children of Mahatma Gandhi will be reviving out of destruction and become Rainbow Warriors to change the world. We will be staging in front of the Town Hall, JC Road on this day. We have to create costumes, masks, postcards, puppets of bombs,etc . We would like to invite you all for this performance to remember Ahimsa~Non Violence that Gandhiji taught us. We will play music, hold exhibitions of Hiroshima and Nagasaki, and do a procession till the City Market. Please come and help us to create. Preparation will be on the 30th Sep from 4 pm, 1st of Oct 2pm at the back of the Ravindra Kalakshetra.

Saturday, September 26, 2009

Nowadays in the Bornfree

After a long time i have gone to meet the Bornfree kids and they all are as energetic as ever. What a smile they share with me. All St. Joseph's Boys are busy with their first term exams. Sanjana, Gowri and Gaja went and came back from Dharwad, the North Karnataka, where Sanjana was born. They all came back to the Bornfree. Without my notice, Prem and John (Prem's elder brother) were gone...what made them leave the BF?...Abhilash is about to be dropping out from the St. Joseph's Indian High School and last week his mother was crying for. I felt he must be feeling something uneasy in his life. He is refusing to go to the school. I also came to know Anthony Das has left the 1st PUC at the St. Joseph's College. He is the first student of the Bornfree who successfully has got a seat in the St. Joseph's and passed the 10th standard SSLC exam. It was his wish to continue his studies, but he had to switch his study medium language from Kannada to English, so he is feeling extremely difficult with his studies. So, what has to be done? We need a help for those who are at the crisis of studies or anything that might bring emotional instability to them. We cannot just feel safe after putting them into the mainstream of education. We need to do more for them....

Tuesday, September 22, 2009

Sculpting at Bornfree

Several of the Bornfree students are studying the process of creating a clay model and casting it in plaster. Today will be the last day of final touches to the clay models and we will cast them in plaster tomorrow. Keep an eye out for pictures of this process!

If you are interested in Bornfree running a clay and plaster casting workshop in your school or organization, please contact Bornfree at or through the website:

Trustee Meeting Results

The meeting this past Friday went very well. We are now in the process of amending our draft and submitting it to the lawyer. We will continue to keep you updated as to the status of the trust!

Thursday, September 17, 2009

Bornfree Trustee Meeting

Bornfree is creating a new foundation trust!
The first meeting of this trust will take place on Friday the 18th of September at 6:00pm at the Art 9 Studio, on State Bank Road, Purshathom Layout.

Bornfree has been delighted that everyone who was approached to be a part of this trust immediately accepted. We look forward to working together with all of you- together we can do great things!

Shiroi Hana Show

Dear Friends,

Here is a photo album of Shiroi Hana show coming up on this weekend. Please join us and watch!

Sunday, September 13, 2009

Shiroi Hana-19th September 2009

Shiroi Hana

19th September 2009, 3pm to 5pm

At the Auditorium of the St. Joseph’s Pre-University College, Residency Road

30-minute-theater-dance show presented by children of the Bornfree Art School

Talk by John Devaraj, the Artistic Director & sculptor ““War Economy and Child Labour”

With a collaboration of the Diploma Course of Human Rights, St. Joseph’s College and SICHREM-South India Cell for Human Rights Education

Ten nations in the world posses nuclear bombs capable of destroying the world a 350 000 times, as many times as people of Hiroshima and Nagasaki died. Human energies and natural resources of the world are being directed towards not human construction but human destruction

There is A WAR going on. A civil war an unholy war an unrecognized war Declared by all adult men of greed against all innocent children, who were all born free now enslaved, shackled to labor! 127 million in India 246 million in the world 50% of all toiling children in India Essential products for human existence and living flavor is being provided by child labour.

We need beauteous birth not death.We need life not a knife, we need bread not bombs

There is a definite link between costs of wars and contribution to education. The economics and dynamics of arming the world and feeding its standing armies is impoverishing the children of the world. The mercenaries of war and arms marketers deny children their right to education, deny the construction of schools as top priority and therefore contribute towards illiteracy, poverty and underdevelopment.

War mongers have not learnt from the suffering of the people of Hiroshima. Twenty four nations have understood this and have no armies. They have all this saved resources for their people. We need no armies to talk to each other. We want to be friends without borders. We need the flower power of Shiroi Hana to bring about world peace.

Shiroi hana is all facts and no fiction. When the bombs fell on Hiroshima and reduced these white flowers to ashes, biologists said that white flowers will not grow for another 75 years But the power of nature is supreme. Shiroi hana came back in three weeks. The inherent nature of Human beings is thus like nature. The world needs to be friends without borders with Shiroi hana.

The Bornfree Art School cordially invites you, your friends and families for the Shiroi Hana show. Please be kindly present. The venue is at the auditorium of the St.Joseph’s Pre-University College ( 2nd Floor) and timing is between 3pm and 5 pm. Thank you.

Tuesday, September 8, 2009

Che Che

Charlie Chaplin returns as

Che Che

Through non violent silent communicative films to make the world laugh, think and free working children of the world

Releasing worldwide triology

Bonda Boy; about children working in Hotels ~ 29minutes, B&W

Ragged dancers; About Rag picking children~18 minutes, B&W

Domestic Monster; About children working in domestic houses ~ 25minutes, B&W

Black and white and read all over

Though the labour law prohibits employing children under the age of 14 years. Millions of children are made to toil. Working children of the world stand at 246million and India 134million Civil society did not take child labour as crime and hence it will grow and go on. Child labour is like the system of dowry. Both systems are prohibited but both grow. People’s mindset has to be changed.

Art can change the world and give a new vision. That is CheChe Che Che is the truth in Black and white and red all over Che Che also refuses class conflicts but raises a doubt in the adult viewer’s minds that they are responsible in freeing children.

Culture of liberation We intend to take Che Che to schools and colleges , institutions, organization, communities wherever people gather. screening as a an education through entertainment program . This idea envisages that Child labour should become a subject of syllabus for children the future citizens of India

Che Che actors The child actors in the film are those who have toiled from their cradle and are now liberated. They are appealing to you by their immense acting and communicative skills. They have also contributed to the production of the films in all its creative aspects. The journey is memorable than the destination.

The Bornfree movement for the liberation of toiling children will be spread and supported by screening and viewing Che Che. Please arrange for screenings in your schools, institutions, neighborhoods. Get Humanize the world: Childrenize the world

No child is free until all children are free.

John Devaraj, Artistic Director

(Che Che produced by the Bornfree Art school International)

Che Che Released in Hyderabad

On the 1st September 2009, Che Che was released at the press conference in Hyderabad with the message by Dr. Shantha Sinha, Chairperson, National Commission for Protection of Child Rights. She states; "Children are children wherever they are.The 'Bonda Boy' working in the hotels the 'mane bootha' working as domestic child labour and the 'rag pickers' in John Devaraj's film "Che Che" show their jest for life and fun.The pathos of their working conditions and yet their playfulness and the child's imagination has been so wonderfully captured in the film. We, as middle class, interact with these children in our daily lives so much, i am sure that the creative way in which John Devaraj has shown child labour in this film woudl sink into our hearts on how much we exploit our children and how awfully dependent we are on them. It is a brilliant film so Charlie Chaplinisque touching the heart of each of the viewers. It strikes the right chord of moral indignation. This must move us to action. Let me congratulate John and his team for this wonderful production. Prof. Shatha Sinha"

It is indeed demanding to show Che Che everywhere possible. Please help us to screen this film in your community, schools, colleges, corporates etc.

Sunday, September 6, 2009

September~Upcoming Events

September 10; Michel Jackson Memorial National Dance and Cultural Festival 2009@ Town Hall
Dancers of the Bornfree Dance Academy will be participating to remember Michel Jackson....

September 19; Shiroi Hana, a theater about Hiroshima and Nagasaki@ the place yet to be announced, Students of Keisen Women's University, Japan will visit to watch the show by the Bonrfree Art School

Welcome to the Bornfree Art School

Dear Friends,

The Bornfree Art School has celebrated the 5th birhtday!
We are glad to keep informing our ongoing activities in this blog. The Bornfree is a movement by the people and we are looking forward to your active participation. You can teach 3Rs, subjects, dance, music, theater, sculpting, painting, photography, filmmaking, etc for children.
Help them to come back to their stolen childhoods and to dream their own dreams!
Please contact us at, or
9886306366 / 9886011830.