Lit for Life

Proof of the pudding: working with the arts

It’s usually the lot of the audience to listen, observe, understand; to stay put and take in ideas, suggestions, techniques. Once in a while, its members find themselves hurriedly jotting down what they want to put into practice later.

And so, in a literature festival with its hours packed with panel after panel featuring well known, well loved names, the audience does come prepared to listen.

The Hindu Lit for Life, though, tries to offer a little more. Each year, the panels share their space on the schedule with another kind of line-up — the workshops. And with each instalment of the festival, the number of these workshops has grown, as has the range of topics they cover. The aim has been to increase the possibility of audience participation and involvement, and to offer practical, hands-on experiences which might spark new interests, and enhance existing ones. Each workshop, conducted by an expert, gives its participants the opportunity to catch a glimpse of their field of interest from a professional perspective, and takes the discussion in the panels a step further, elevating it from just discussion to actual action and participation. The smaller number of people in a workshop also allows for a more involved participation.

This year, with a list of ten workshops spread over three days, once again the festival attempts to bring to its attendees the opportunity to interact with experts in several fields. The line-up underlines what has quickly become an important identifier of Lit for Life — the need to include and explore different, multiple art forms and disciplines in addition to and supplementing the written word. The workshops cover a range of topics, and try to bring something for everyone, across age and interest.

While “Brunch Better” with Chefs Kunal Kapur and Manu Chandra focuses on techniques that teach you how to spruce up brunch with clever tricks and professional tips, “Lyric Engineering” with Madhan Karky is a workshop on creating effective lyrics, introducing the participants to tools for analysing lyrics and discussing lyric engineering topics such as word statistics, lyric feature extraction, pleasantness and lyricist modelling.

“Writing on the Arts” explores a different kind of writing, and curated and conceptualised by Sharan Apparao, it brings together well-known critics, writers and artistes like Dr. Ashrafi Bhagat, Geeta Doctor, Sadanand Menon, Anita Ratnam and Dayanita Singh to share and discuss different aspects of writing on art and culture.

Moving away from the written word, though, “Die, Author, Die”, has Baradwaj Rangan getting together with a very small group of film lovers to dissect, critique and discuss movies, while “Dermocracy” with Dr. Sharad P. Paul focuses on skincare and offers tips, tricks and information to ensure your skin’s health.

It’s almost certain that you will find a workshop that catches your eye, enhancing your experience at the festival, and leaving you with memories of both beautiful words and inspiring action.


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Printable version | Sep 26, 2021 9:35:25 AM | https://www.thehindu.com/features/lit-for-life/the-hindu-lit-for-life-2015-workshops/article6771798.ece

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