Blue Metropolis festival 2018 unveils program
Blue Metropolis festival – This past Monday the Blue Metropolis Festival 2018 unveiled the program for this year’s event, and being this a special occasion—its 20th edition—the offering by the main literary festival in our city promises to be an exciting and diverse one.
One literary anniversary that will be highlighted by Blue Metropolis is the 200th year since the publication of “Frankenstein or, The Modern Prometheus” written by Mary Shelley when she was still short of her 19th birthday. This book is considered the first work of science fiction and it also touches the subject of horror, crime, and fantasy. This seminal work will be explored in the series appropriately called “Fear and Darkness” featuring genre authors Dirk Kurbjuweit, Vikas Swarup, Philippe Jaenada, Trevor Ferguson, and Lola Lafon.
Still, on the dark side of writing, Quebec author Louise Penny will be delivering the pre-festival Hugh MacLennan Memorial Lecture titled “Murder for a Living” at McGill University’s New Residence Hall on April 19, at 5:30 p.m.
Moving away from the dark side, Blue Metropolis also includes a whole mini-event for children. Now in its 11th year, the TD-Blue Metropolis Children’s Festival features “240 events, including storytelling events and readings held in libraries, cultural centres, and bookstores throughout Greater Montreal.” Undoubtedly a significant initiative designed to foster an interest in reading to young people (it offers activities for children from infancy to age 12).
And then we have the prizes awarded each year in various categories. The 2018 Literary Grand Prix will be for renowned Montreal philosopher, university lecturer, and of course the author of several books, Charles Taylor. The long-time McGill professor has published a number of philosophical texts, especially on the subject of ethics: “Sources of the Self: The Making of Modern Identity” (1989), “The Malaise of Modernity” (1991), and “A Secular Age” (2007), among others. The Board of Directors of the Blue Metropolis Foundation described Taylor’s contribution in the following terms: “His engagement in society and issues related to peaceful co-existence, his humanism, scholarship, the depth of his thinking and the quality of his work make him a notable thinker of our times. The Festival wishes to celebrate this by awarding him the 2018 Blue Metropolis Grand Prix, for our special 20th-anniversary edition.” The award ceremony for this prize will take place on April 28 at 4 p.m. at the Grande Bibliothèque, on that occasion Taylor will be interviewed by Radio Canada journalist Michel Desautels.
Other awards given by Blue Metropolis this year will go to Romanian-Canadian author Alina Dumitrescu (Diversity Prize), Lebanese author Charif Majdalani (Words to Change Prize), Argentine journalist and novelist Leila Guerriero (Premio Metropolis Azul), and the inaugural Blue Metropolis Violet Literary Prize will be presented to LGBTQ poet, essayist and novelist Nicole Brossard. This new award will alternate each year between a Francophone and an Anglophone author.
Blue Metropolis will take place from April 20 to 29, with most of its events held at the Hotel 10 (Sherbrooke corner of St. Laurent). The festival will present 240 events – 125 for adults, 115 for children. For the entire Festival (including the TD Children’s Festival) 33% of the presentations are in French; 39% in English; 26% bilingual or in other languages. There will be 262 writers or participants from 19 countries, including Canada, France, the US, Israel, India, Lebanon, Spain, Peru, Italy, Sweden, Norway, Denmark, Iceland, Argentina, Mexico, Brazil, Colombia, Germany and Portugal.
For detailed information, including ticket prices, the program, and biographical information of the participants, visit www.bluemetropolis.org