Along with literary heavyweights, arts and culture to enhance JLF experience

New Delhi, Jan 6 (IANS) Even as the buzz around the upcoming Jaipur Literature Festival, which will witness participation of some of the most renowned literary heavyweights, is gaining ground, an announcement on Friday about two “Heritage Evenings” is all set to elevate the event to a new level.

Rajasthan Tourism has collaborated with the lit fest to showcase poetry and music against the backdrop of two of Jaipur’s heritage monuments — the Amber Fort and Hawa Mahal on January 20 and 21.

In an “East meets West” sort of scenario, celebrated American poet Anne Waldman and renowned Bollywood lyricist Swanand Kirkire will enchant visitors with their readings in a session titled “Rhythm and Rhyme.” This evening of poetry readings will be held at Amber Fort on January 20 and will bring voices from two sides of the globe, followed by a sarod Recital by Ustad Amjad Ali Khan, a receipent of the Padma Vibhushan, India’s second highest civilian honour.

“Mujre Se Multiplex Tak,” will take the audience on a journey through the magical realm of entertainment at Hawa Mahal on the following evening.

Coursing through the ever-changing world of cultural entertainment, the session will explore how the audiences at entertainment venues have evolved over the years. Writer and musician Vidya Shah will reflect on these changes through song while actor Luke Kenny punctuates them with poignant poetry and quirky banter.

“With the support of Rajasthan Tourism, the ZEE Jaipur Literature Festival celebrates the wonderful cultural and architectural heritage of the city of Jaipur through the Festival’s Heritage Evenings. The exclusively curated evenings offer an experience that uniquely places cultural performances within the context of the city’s built heritage and allows audiences to engage with these significant places in a new dimension,” festival producer Sanjoy Roy said.

This year’s list of speakers at the lit fest sees a host of Man Booker winners and nominees including the current and first and only American to have been awarded the prestigious prize, Paul Beatty.

Hip-hop poet and novelist Paul Beatty was awarded the Man Booker Prize in 2016 for his caustic satire on racial politics, “The Sellout”, in which he plunges into the heart of contemporary American society with savage wit.

Alan Hollinghurst, author of five novels, including “The Swimming-Pool Library” and “The Line of Beauty”, which won the Man Booker in 2004 will also joins the visitors in Jaipur. With a new novel due to be published in the summer of 2017, this bestselling writer and translator will be talking about his life and work with Chandrahas Choudhury, a New Delhi-based novelist whose “Arzee the Dwarf” has been translated into German and Spanish and is soon to be made into a film.

Also joining the festival will be Richard Flanagan, considered by many to be the finest Australian novelist of his generation.

Sahitya Akademi Award winners Naseem Shafaie and S.L. Bhyrappa will also feature in this edition of the festival.

“As the festival approaches, we are beyond delighted by the illustrious writers who will be joining us soon in Jaipur. From the latest winner of the Man Booker Prize, Paul Beatty, joined by past holders Alan Hollinghurst and Richard Flannagan, to veteran Kannada writer SL Bhyrappa and the courageous and charismatic Kashmiri poet Naseem Shafaie, audiences will once again witness a range of literary greats on the ZEE Jaipur Literature Festival stage,” said festival co-director Namita Gokhale.

The annual event has been held at the Diggi Palace since it was founded and will return for its 10th edition from January 19 to 23.

–IANS

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