Urdu poetry rang out in St. Paul’s Cathedral as singer Minu Bakshi opened the Poetry Café at Apeejay Kolkata Literary Festival 2018 with ‘Mauj-e-Saraab’. Joined by Sundeep Bhutoria and Saira Shah Halim, the opening was a mesmerizing evening with poetry readings from Arthur Cardozo, Anjana Basu and Nalini Paul from UK.
In its third year now Poetry Café is an effort by Oxford Bookstore to promote poetry as a creative and literary form and provide a forum for aspiring poets within a major literary festival.
The program for the next two days:-
Jan 13 – ‘An evening of French Poetry’ in association with Bonjour India
Jan 14 – A spectrum of voices including Budding poets from City’s Colleges, winners of the Oxford Bookstore run contest.
French Haitian poets James Noël, Makenzy Orcel, American poet Mousumi Banerjee, UK poet Nalini Paul and Indian poets Sudeep Sen, C. P. Surendran, Sampurna Chattarji, Joie Bose, Debasish Lahiri, Jayant Kripalani, Rahul Guha Roy, Avik Chanda & Ananya Chatterjee will feature in Poetry Café’.
The best of the young college poets include Madhura Banerjee currently pursuing a master’s degree in Computer Science from St. Xavier’s College, Ananya Kabiraj currently pursuing a Master’s Degree in Economics at Calcutta University, Navamita Chandra currently pursuing her Masters in Film Studies from Jadavpur University, Trisrota Datta pursuing an Honour’s Degree in English Literature from Bethune College. These are the young aspiring poets from Kolkata who will be performing on Jan 14th as the outcome of the Ode to Poetry Café sessions organized by Oxford Bookstore recently.
About Poetry Café
Poetry, particularly in Kolkata, is a passion that cuts across languages and socio-economic backgrounds and draws together a cross-section of people from youth to the mature. To honour this form of creative expression, AKLF initiated Poetry Café two years ago as an integral part of the Festival, thus becoming the first literary festival to have a dedicated poetry programme. In year one, Poetry Café was held at the iconic Max Mueller Bhavan café on Ballygunge Circular Rd. Year two saw Poetry Café installed in the picturesque premises of St Paul’s Cathedral, in a dedicated space with an intimate and aesthetically pleasing ambience. Poetry Café has over the past two years featured international and nationally recognized poets and poetry aficionados like Ben Okri, Bashobi Fraser, Andy Corner, Neal Hall, Anjum Hasan, Anita Nair, Jerry Pinto, Sankho Ghosh, Bina Sarkar Elias, Kalyan Ray, Aparna Sen, Debasish Lahiri, Anjana Basu, Avik Chanda, and many younger poets of the city writing in Hindi, Urdu, Bengali and English.