Closing Mail - BLF 2012 - Bangalore Literature Festival (BLF)

Thank you for making it to BLF 2012!
We hope you enjoyed being there as much as we loved putting it together for you. The city’s maiden literature festival that saw over 80 authors participate in an unforgettable literary extravaganza, played out most harmoniously at the leafy heritage venue of Jayamahal Palace.

“Looking forward to the Bangalore Lit Fest this weekend. What a super line-up! BLF off to a good start. This one is a Lit Fest. Not a Lit Circus”, tweeted Shobhaa De a day prior to the festival.

The festival was inaugurated by eminent writers UR Ananthamurthy, Chandrashekara Kambara, Shashi Deshpande, Nisar Ahmed and Gulzar. Creativity in writing was discussed by Chandrashekhara Kambara, Nisar Ahmed, UR Ananthamurthy, Vaidehi and Manu Chakravarthy. Banu Mushtaq, Jayant Kaikini, Kum Veerabhadrappa, Mamta Sagar and Prakash Belawadi took up new waves in Kannada literature. On ‘Bangalore/Bengaluru: Multiple City?’ UR Ananthamurthy, TV Mohandas Pai, Shobhaa De, Prakash Belawadi, V Ravichandar and actor Ramya were strikingly eloquent while Nandan Nilekani, Akash Banerjee, Akash Kapur, Sanjeev Sanyal and Sir Mark Tully ‘scripted India’ beautifully. Sunil Sethi explored ‘Is Fiction Losing its Magic?’ with Shashi Deshpande, Tarquin Hall, Jahnavi Barua and Jaishree Misra, and Usha KR took up ‘Memory, Experience and Stories’ with Anita Nair, Biman Nath, Kavery Nambisan and Manju Kapur. The ‘Literature in Twitter Era’ session had Harish Bijoor and Sudheendra Kulkarni as its most fluent panelists.

Westland’s Gautam Padmanabhan, HarperCollins’ VK Karthika, Random House’s Caroline Newbury, Ankita Pustaka’s Prakash Kambathalli, Amaryllis’ Sanjana Roychoudhury and Unisun’s Annie Chandy demystified the business of books. Ferment in West Asia was studied minutely by former ambassadors Akbar Mirza Khaleeli, IP Khosla, CV Ranganathan and author John Balian. The session on Biographies/Memoirs saw Sunil Sethi quiz Ajoy Bose, Bhawana Somaaya, Tavleen Singh and Vikram Sampath. ‘Playing the Write Game’ had Sri Lankan award-winning writer Shehan Karunatilaka, Boria Majumdar, Vedam Jaishankar, Vinod Naidu and Ashwini Nachappa as panelists. ‘The World in Verse’ showcased Jayant Kaikini, Mamta Shankar, Sampurna Chattarji, Shaistha Yousuf and Khaleelur Rehman. Mahesh Dattani and Ashish Sen explored the ‘Stage of Life’ and debutant writers Shefalee Vasudev, Aroon Raman, Sudeep Nagarkar, Vikrant Dutta and Yasmeen Premji spoke of their first books.

For the Festival co-founders Anil Kumar, Shinie Antony, Srikrishna Ramamoorthy and Vikram Sampath, the debut edition was a success beyond expectations – thanks to the participating authors, literature lovers of the city who turned out in large numbers, festival sponsors, partners and advisors for their unstinting support, print and electronic media for the fantastic coverage.

Like the rest of Bangalore, we too cannot wait for the second edition of the festival. Next year will only see the festival grow bigger and better, with more readers and more writers signing up. Meanwhile, BLF will stay connected with you via our quarterly literary journal – Beantown, significant book launches and the ongoing author interactions with schools and colleges.