Caitlin - Light, Ladd & Emberton ©

Warren  Orchard

In January 2019, four Welsh artists and arts organisations travelled to Kolkata to present their work in theatre, dance and literature.

The projects presented work at prestigious festivals in the city, undertook workshops with local schools, students and arts professionals and spoke on panels and delivered lectures alongside leading Indian culture professionals. 

Wales in Kolkata, the season of Welsh arts activity and collaboration, is supported by the British Council and Wales Arts International. This festival is a result of the relationships and networks formed by the 2017-18 India Wales season, a major programme of artistic collaboration between Wales and India, which has paved the way for lasting international cultural networks between the two countries. 

Details of the programme:

CAITLIN

Light, Ladd & Emberton partnering with the Kolkata-based Pickle Factory Dance Foundation performed their immersive dance production Caitlin, selected for the British Council Edinburgh Showcase 2017. The acclaimed show which staged at the Goethe Institut / Max Mueller Bhavan hall, chronicles the popular Welsh poet Dylan Thomas’ tumultuous relationship with his wife Caitlin.

Throughout the festival, Light, Ladd & Emberton’s performers also conducted workshops, beginning with the students of Kala Bhavan in Santiniketan, where they shared their skills and creative knowledge. Eddie Ladd, one of Wales’ leading dance and performance artists who performs in Caitlin, led a panel discussion with Ayesha Jalal and Samantak Das on Troubled Geniuses: Dylan Thomas and Manto at the Kolkata Literary Meet, Victoria Memorial on 26 January.

TRANSPORTER

Theatre Iolo, with their passion for delivering meaningful theatre for young audiences, enthralled Kolkata with their production of Transporter, a spoken word odyssey, capturing the journey of a young girl Maya. The company partnered with Kolkata-based Think Arts who works in arts with young audiences and who Theatr Iolo worked with when taking their expertise in theatre for babies to India for their #IndiaWales project.

They held workshops and performances at Birla Academy of Art and Culture and Modern High School for Girls. Theatr Iolo was accompanied by their award-winning artistic director Lee Lyford and performed Transporter at the Junior Kolkata Literary Meet, Victoria Memorial Hall. 

DYLAN THOMAS PRIZE

The Dylan Thomas Prize is the world's largest financial literature prize and is based at Swansea University.

This year's prize winner, Kayo Chingonyi travelled to Jaipur Literature Festival to deliver talks and seminars, accompanied by Swansea University academics Dr Elaine Canning and Prof Daniel Williams. 

Prof Daniel Williams delivered the Dylan Thomas lecture at the British Council in Kolkata. The session also saw a presentation by Dr Elaine Canning of the International Dylan Thomas Prize, enlightening the audience about the world’s largest literary prize for young writers. They also conducted workshops and lectures about the life and inspirations of Dylan Thomas, at venues including the Kolkata Policy Library and South City International School.

GARY RAYMOND

Gary Raymond, novelist and renowned editor of Wales Arts Review, was also a part of the Wales in Kolkata delegation. He launched an anthology of short stories by Welsh writers ‘Renegade Wales: Revolutionary New Voices in Welsh Fiction’ in collaboration with Indian publishers BEE Books at the British Council, and also attended the Kolkata Literature Festival at the Kolkata Book Fair in February 2019. Gary is a critically acclaimed novelist, author of the ‘brilliant and unnerving’ (Bookseller) The Golden Orphans, published by Welsh Publisher Parthian. He also conducted creative writing and publishing workshops at venues including the iLEAD Media and Management Institute and the Kolkata Press Club.

External links