Event Hyderabad

Hyderabad Literary Festival 2022 to open online on January 28

NEW DELHI, 20/10/2019: Indian-American Nobel laureate Abhijit Banerjee, during an interview in New Delhi on October 20, 2019. Photo: Shiv Kumar Pushpakar

NEW DELHI, 20/10/2019: Indian-American Nobel laureate Abhijit Banerjee, during an interview in New Delhi on October 20, 2019. Photo: Shiv Kumar Pushpakar

For the second consecutive year, the Hyderabad Literary Festival (HLF) 2022 will be held virtually. This year’s edition will unfold online (at youtube.com/c/hlf-india) from January 28 to 30. When the directors of the festival decided late last year to conduct HLF 2022 virtually, it appeared to be a preemptive move, factoring in the possibility of the third wave of COVID-19: “It was a good call to plan an online festival,” reckons Amita Desai of Goethe-Zentrum Hyderabad, one of the festival directors.

HLF began in 2010 and in its physical form, hosted multidisciplinary events — literary sessions, poetry, storytelling, workshops, performing arts, theatre, art showcases, workshops and movie screenings. HLF 2022 will incorporate events in all these streams online.

This year’s festival is dedicated to the late Ajay Gandhi, founder of Manthan and one of the former directors of HLF. Carnatic vocalist and writer T M Krishna will deliver a tribute to Mr Gandhi on the opening evening, before moving on to talk about ‘Artistic Universe: Creative Spaces Within and Without’.

Mr Gandhi was associated with the HLF since 2013 and worked alongside the other directors — professor T Vijay Kumar, Kinnera Murthy and Amita Desai.

MUMBAI, MAHARASHTRA, 16/11/2018: Carnatic music vocalist, T.M. Krishna, talking at Tata Literature Live - The Mumbai LitFest 2018, in Mumbai on November 16, 2018. Photo: Vivek Bendre

MUMBAI, MAHARASHTRA, 16/11/2018: Carnatic music vocalist, T.M. Krishna, talking at Tata Literature Live - The Mumbai LitFest 2018, in Mumbai on November 16, 2018. Photo: Vivek Bendre

The guest nation for HLF 2022 is the United Kingdom and the Indian language in focus is Punjabi. A panel discussion titled ‘Lest we forget 1984’ will focus on Punjab; master photographer Raghu Rai and his wife Gurmeet Rai will be in conversation with academician Usha Raman in the session ‘Amritsar: A City in Remembrance’.

In the past, HLF attracted students and enthusiasts of literature and art at its venues, paving the way for a carnival-like atmosphere. The 2021 virtual edition witnessed smaller focussed groups logging in to view the proceedings.

The HLF team is aware of the digital fatigue among people, owing to extended online engagement during the pandemic. However, on the brighter side, the digital festival has enabled easier international participation.

Let imaginations soar Nandana Sen feels that children’s books should be fun, not preachyMala Mukerjee & Special Arrangement

Let imaginations soar Nandana Sen feels that children’s books should be fun, not preachyMala Mukerjee & Special Arrangement

For instance, the 60-minute interactive play The Art of Facing Fear: World United , features 20 actors from five continents. The play is set in a dystopian future in the aftermath of the pandemic. Conceptualised in 2020, the play encourages the audience to share their fears and their tributes to their loved ones. The actors incorporate the text into the script. “The play acknowledges the mental trauma and touches upon other issues that people have been facing; in a non-preachy manner, it addresses how we can cope with a positive attitude,” explains Sumit Lai Roy of The Red Curtain International, which has collaborated with Brazil’s Os Satyros group for the play.

Literary sessions will take up diverse topics and the delegates include Nobel laureate Abhijit Banerjee and artist Cheyenne Olivier who will discuss their book Cooking to Save Your Life , Kavitha Rao for her book Lady Doctors: The Untold Stories of India’s First Women in Medicine , Nandana Dev Sen on poems penned by her mother Nabaneeta Dev Sen, Hyderabad writer Balaji Vittal and journalist Kaveri Bamzai discussing on-screen heroes and villains, and actor Divya Dutta holding forth on women in cinema.

There will also be workshops for children and teens, art exhibitions and movie screenings by Moving Images group.

(For the schedule, check www.hydlitfest.org)


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Printable version | May 23, 2022 5:39:20 am | https://www.thehindu.com/news/cities/Hyderabad/hyderabad-literary-festival-to-begin-online-on-january-28/article38328334.ece