Like previous years, this year’s Dhaka Lit Fest offers some interesting events.
Gemcon Literary Awards 2019
This year’s Gemcon Literary Awards (Gemcon Sahitya Puroshkar), one of Bangladesh's biggest literary awards for creative writing in Bengali, will be announced on the opening day at Abdul Karim Sahitya Bisharod (AKSB) auditorium.
Last year fiction writer Prashanta Mridha won the Gemcon Literary Award for his novel Dugdugir Ashor. The other two awards were bagged by writer Hamim Kamal for his short story collection Sonailer Golpo and poet Nayeem Hasan for his poetry book Dil Nilamer Haat.
The award is worth Tk 800,000. In terms of monetary value this is now the biggest award and among the non-government awards it is the oldest. The young awardees will get Tk 100,000 each.
Kafka’s ‘The Metamorphosis’ in VR
On the opening day, an awe-inspiring opportunity for audience to have the experience of being transformed into a giant insect, in virtual-reality (VR), an experience that Gregor Samsa goes through in Franz Kafka’s novella The Metamorphosis.
VRwandlung (The Metamorphosis VR), a travelling VR exhibition, translates Franz Kafka's work from the pages of a book into virtual reality. In a thematically reconstructed room, the audience will become Samsa, wearing a VR headset.
Directed by Mika Johnson and produced by Shahid Gulamali, this visual installation was first premiered at Prague’s Goethe-Institut in early 2018. Ján Tompkins, who supervises VRwandlung, will be present as a speaker to discuss this project.
Film screening: 'A Daughter’s Tale'
Piplu R Khan’s historical docudrama Hasina: A Daughter's Tale (2018) will be screened on the second day at the AKSB auditorium, on the second day of this year’s Dhaka Lit Fest.
Jointly produced by the Center of Research and Information and Applebox Films, this 70-minute historical film is based on the life of Sheikh Hasina, the Prime Minister of Bangladesh. Beginning with the brutal assassination of Bangabandhu Sheikh Mujibur Rahman and most of his family members, it goes on narrating the incredible story of the struggle that she and her sister Sheikh Rehana embarked on to realize their father’s dreams.
The screening will be preceded by an introductory speech by K Anis Ahmed. Afterward, a panel comprising Radwan Mujib Siddiq, Piplu R Khan, Debajyoti Mishra and Anjum Katyal will reflect on different aspects of the film.