It’s not just people who get stereotyped; cities have to face this dilemma too. In our country, the tag of being the ‘city for the artsy and literary-minded’ has been occupied by Kolkata for a long time. Agreed, Kolkata has that old-world vibe that makes you want to do nothing but break into a Wordsworth poem, but that does not mean that other cities have no literary culture at all. And Namma Bengaluru has been steadily and surely climbing the charts in that field.
So, lit lovers in the city, take heart. If you have been wondering how best to fill your annual calendar with things to do in Bangalore, here’s a lowdown on some of the popular literary and art festivals in the city, which should keep you occupied:
- Bangalore Literary Festival
It’s only three years old, but the BLF has surely taken the nation by storm. Before this, book worms only had the Jaipur Literary Fest to look forward to and hope that they could somehow make it there and meet their favourite writers. But now, the BLF gives them a second shot at doing the same in a single year!
This completely independent and crowd-funded festival is unique in its own way. Last year, the focus was on writers from the North-East, and the three-day event did a great job of showcasing the understated talent from that oft-forgotten region. Then there was a ‘Lit-Mart,’ which was used as a platform for young and budding writers. All in all, the BLF has added a new dimension to the city’s events landscape and is only set to grow to newer heights. A must-visit, surely!
- Pustaka Parishe
Bangalore may not have many fairs and trade exhibitions unlike some other cities in the country, but it does have this – the Pustaka Parishe. A ‘buy-all-you-want’ offer for all the bookworms in the city. Now in its eighth year, this ‘mela’ is your chance to browse through various books and pick your favourites at jaw-dropping prices. Such is the craze for the event that last year the authorities decided to extend the normally single-day event to a full-fledged three-day affair. Over 25 lakh books were estimated to be on display at the fair.
The best thing about the Pustaka Parishe is that it is free of cost. Book readers can either pick up books for free, or donate old books they have had for years. So, if your book shelf has a few empty spaces, you know where to go to find the missing pieces.
- Bangalore International Arts Festival
Mumbai may have its Kalaghoda Festival, and Delhi the DIAF, but Bangalore is no far behind. The BIAF is an eight-year old platform for artists down south to showcase their talent. An event that is sponsored by the tourism department in the city, it brings out the best that the south of India has to offer. In its last edition, the BIAF saw performances from renowned Carnatic vocalist M. Balamurali Krishna, tabla maestro Ustad Zamin Hussain, along with international musicians from as far away as France and Rwanda.
So, plan ahead this year and keep these dates free so you can have your fill of Bangalore’s literary offerings.
Author’s bio: A student at one of the prestigious colleges in Bangalore, he has a keen knowledge of the things to do in Bangalore that go beyond the usual. He blogs to help newbie to the city find their footing and his writings can be found at eventshigh.