With an office bookshelf positively groaning with the works of 150+ speakers set to descend on the UWRF17, Festival staff have no shortage of literary inspiration. So what’s keeping them up at night, page by page, in the lead up to this year’s event? In our latest series, #UWRFBookClub, we chat to the Festival team about their highlight authors and artists. This week, we chat to Partnership Manager, Saraswati Ratnanggana.
With my childhood obsession with dolls – from pretty Barbie to downright creepy Chucky – and how I could spend hours making up stories about Barbie living (not-so) happily ever after with Ultraman (my brother’s action figure), it’s not surprising that Papermoon Puppet Theatre had a certain appeal for my seven-year-old self.
One of their plays, titled Secangkir Kopi dari Playa, gives me chills for all the right reasons. It’s amazing how they bring such emotion to their puppets, and I was in tears from watching it online. I can’t even imagine how much more powerful it’s going to be to watch them in person.
Each year, the Festival brings some extraordinary stories to the stage. In 2016, I was obsessed with the experiences of undercover journalist Suki Kim, who posed as a school teacher in North Korea.
Sophal Ear is the one I’m most excited to meet this year. Sophal escaped from the Khmer Rouge with his mum when he was only ten-years-old, then moved to the US as a refugee. I’m interested to hear how such experiences shaped and continue to impact a person.
Nowadays, comedy is more than just laughing matter – it is a great way to send your message and challenge current issues. Sakdiyah Mar’uf is doing exactly this; one of the first female Muslim standup comedians who takes on issues of violence, extremism, and women’s rights. I know for sure Sakdiyah is going to be awesome! I really want to meet her and give her a massive high five.