The Jaipur Literature Festival, the world’s largest free literary festival, will host its first Canadian event in Toronto this fall. JLF Toronto will host readings, discussions, outdoor performances, art installations, and culinary experiences alongside a street festival in the Distillery Historic District.
Since 2014, Teamwork Arts, producer of the Jaipur Literature Festival, has taken JLF to international venues with editions in London, Belfast, New York, Boulder, Houston, Adelaide, and now Toronto, recreating the Festival’s spirit and magic across the world. For the first time ever, Teamwork Arts, producer of the Jaipur Literature Festival, brings to Canada a celebration of literature and the power of dialogue between September 27 and 29, 2019.
But why the name JLF? To this Sanjoy K Roy, Managing Director, Teamwork Arts says, “JLF is a recognized brand and the largest cultural brand. JLF has established an identity for itself. Today whichever country that we go to, they want JLF.”
The Jaipur festival has welcomed Canadian authors such as Margaret Atwood, Yann Martel, Michael Ondaatje, and Rupi Kaur alongside international icons including Salman Rushdie, J.M. Coetzee, the Dali Lama, and Oprah Winfrey.
JLF has previously produced events in London, New York, Belfast, Boulder, Houston, and Adelaide. “They want the same feel of the Jaipur Literature Festival with its colour, food, noise, voices, diversity and conversation,” adds Roy.
Set to take place at Toronto’s Distillery Historic District - one of Canada’s premier arts, culture and entertainment destinations with charming cobbled streets, artists’ studios, cafes, galleries, and the dynamic Young Centre for the Performing Arts - JLF Toronto recreates the magnificent spirit of Jaipur’s annual literary carnival bringing its inclusive and infectious camaraderie to the vibrant capital of Ontario with a heady mix of writers, thinkers, poets, balladeers, and raconteurs.
JLF Toronto follows close-on-the-heels of three JLF editions in the US including JLF Houston on September 13th to14th , 2019 at the Asia Society Texas Center; JLF New York on September 17th to 18th , 2019 at the Asia Society New York and ZEE JLF Colorado on September 20th to 22nd, 2019 at the Boulder Public Library.
The festival promises to deliver a dynamic programme encompassing readings, discussions, outdoor performances, art installations, culinary offerings, and an exciting and vibrant street festival. Uniting internationally-acclaimed authors on a single stage, JLF Toronto will provide world-renowned writers with a unique platform to participate in cross-cultural conversations on an array of topics, including the arts, politics, environment, economics, gender issues, and more.
The Jaipur Literature Festival in India is often called “the greatest literary show on Earth” and has, since its conception, transformed itself into a global literary phenomenon, hosting 2,000 guest speakers and welcoming over one million book-lovers from the world over. It is a platform with not just a stunning breadth in ideas and themes but also one which gives access to all.
Numerous Canadian authors have been featured at the Festival in Jaipur, including Margaret Atwood, Yann Martel, Michael Ondaatje, Manjushree Thapa and Rupi Kaur, to name a few. High Commissioner of Canada to India,Nadir Patel says, “I am very pleased that a new chapter of the renowned JLF will now be hosted in the city of Toronto. Several Canadian writers of eminence have participated in the festival at Jaipur including Margaret Atwood, Yann Martel, Michael Ondaatje, Manjushree Thapa, and Rupi Kaur, to name a few. The festival is yet another milestone in the rich people-to-people ties between our two nations. I am confident that the festival will provide an opportunity to make new connection in the literary and cultural sphere and further enhance our bilateral ties in this sector.”
Roy states, “Our effort has always been to reach out to the art loving mainstream population of any city. We are thrilled to bring the vim and vigour of the world’s biggest literary event to Toronto, and celebrate diversity, while creating a platform to share each other’s stories.”
The festival, in keeping with JLF’s international programming vision, will reinforce South Asia’s unique literary heritage, while being infusing with flavours true to the proud literary legacy of Canada. With globally-celebrated authors and thinkers taking part in a range of stimulating panels and debates, the programme resonates with ideas and issues critical to our present, past, and future.