JLF announces dates for international editions

With over 60 speakers including Nobel laureate Venki Ramakrishnan and Bollywood actor Manisha Koirala, the 6th JLF London will mark the beginning of this year's international editions of the literary festival, the organisers announced Thursday.

Organised by Teamwork Arts, the "annual celebration of books, creativity, dialogue and diversity will bring South Asia's multilingual literary heritage" to the British Library in London from June 14-16.

"We're back for our sixth edition in London with a colourful bandwagon of books, ideas and dialogue that capture our imaginations and explore the dynamic and challenging times we live in.

"ZEE JLF at the British Library will look at history as well as current affairs, explore scientific works and the creative worlds of cinema, literature and poetry. This year we have also partnered with the British Museum for an evening of conversations," Sanjoy Roy, managing director of Teamwork Arts, said.

The London edition will witness speakers including historian and former Labour MP Tristram Hunt, acclaimed travel writer Pico Iyer, award-winning author and journalist Christopher de Bellaigue and famous fiction author Jeffrey Archer.

The "grand feast of ideas" will travel for the first time to Belfast as its second stop in the UK from June 21-23, exploring themes that bind India and Northern Ireland such as border and partition, and the concepts of identity and migration, among others.

Hosted in partnership with the Arts Council of Northern Ireland and the British Council, the festival in Belfast will see Pico Iyer, acclaimed travel writer; esteemed writers Brian Keenan and Patrick Gale and award-winning poet Ruth Padel among others.

After the UK, the festival will head to North America in the fall with editions in Houston, New York, and Boulder, Colorado, followed by its first outing in Toronto and finally to Adelaide in Australia.

In the fall, the second edition of JLF Houston on September 1314; the second edition of JLF New York on September 18 and the fifth edition of JLF Colorado on September 20-22 will be organised.

From September 27-29, the festival will travel to Toronto for the first time featuring a dynamic programme encompassing readings, discussions, outdoor performances, art installations, culinary offerings, and a colourful street festival.

The final leg of the international festivals this year will be JLF Adelaide in collaboration for a second year with the OzAsia Festival for a three-day event set to take place in November.

The dates and programme details for the US, Canada and Australia will be announced soon, the organisers said.