InKo Centre and Arts Council Korea (ARKO) are delighted to support Korean playwright, Eugene Lee at the Sangam House Writing Residency at Nrityagram from 9 January to 13 February 2012. Eugene Lee will also participate in Lekhana, the literary weekend organised by Sangam House with writers from Bangalore, and Sangam House writers-in residence during the period- from Korea, Finland, Denmark, Italy and France. Eugene Lee’s residency follows the very successful stint by Indian writer Manav Kaul at the Toji residency in Korea. Dr Arshia Sattar, Co-Founder and Director, Sangam House, outlines the intent of this unique international writers’ residency and of Bangalore’s first literary weekend Lekhana.

Sangam House, the international writers’ residency program based in southern India, enters its fourth season in 2012. Our host institution remains Nrityagram, the dance village located 40 kms outside Bangalore city, home to the country’s best known Oddisi dance company. Sangam House writers will be housed in the newly built Kula facility on the Nrityagram campus, a separate residential building that is designed for use by visiting performers and other artistes.

Apart from having hosted nearly fifty writers from all over the world (including 3 from Korea) over the last three seasons, Sangam House continues to extend its commitment to literary cultures in local and international communities. In 2011 (supported in part by the Inko Centre), we published “Other People,” our first Sangam House Reader, a multi-lingual anthology of short works and excerpts from the 32 writers who had been resident with us in our first two seasons.

In each Sangam House season, there are a series of public readings in local book shops and arts spaces. In 2012, we will extend the idea of an evening of readings by Sangam House residents into a literary weekend that includes writers from all over Bangalore. Lekhana (which means ‘writing’ in many Indian languages) will run for three days in February (10,11 and 12) and bring together the many writers and multiple languages and literary cultures that inhabit Bangalore in discussions and open fora, readings, workshops, screenings and performances. A large part of our audience will be college students and young writers.

Lekhana has been organised through a series of partnerships with other literary and arts organisations in Bangalore: Toto Funds the Arts, Deshakaala the Kannada literary journal, Reading Hour which publishes short fiction in English and the National Gallery of Modern Art which is our host venue. The theme of our first literary weekend is “The City,”: our opening panel brings together writers who use the city as a character in their work. Although each panel focuses primarily on English and Kannada, Sangam House’s presence ensures that languages from across the world will also be heard -- Korean, Danish, Italian, French and Finnish are some of the languages that our resident writers will bring to our city.

Our resident Korean writer at the time is the young playwright Eugene Lee and we look forward to her presentation at Lekhana. Lekhana intends not only to showcase writing and thoughts about writing, but to create a space where writers from across languages and cultures can have meaningful dialogue about their work, their inspirations and the circumstances that can inhibit or nurture writing.

Lekhana is free and open to all. Do join us, to share your work, to hear the works of others, to think critically about reading and writing and to immerse yourself in worlds upon worlds of the imagination.

Arshia Sattar Co-Founder and Director, Sangam House

Eugene Lee
Playwright Eugene Lee will be at Nrityagram for four weeks from 9 January to 13 February 2012 to participate in the Sangam House Writing Residency and in the literary weekend Lekhana in Bangalore.
Born in Busan, Eugene Lee majored in linguistics in Korea University graduated from Korea National University of Arts with an MFA in playwriting. She has written plays and Korean traditional opera librettos. She is keenly interested in the opera and to learn more about Indian classical music and playwriting traditions.

Writing/Productions and Awards

  • Story, directed by Kwanghwa Cho, 2007
  • Script, “Palace Festival” in Hi Seoul Festival (SFAC), 2008
  • Script, “The Nocturnal Concert of Poems and Lieds” (Sejong Art Center), 2009
  • Joined Science Story Creative Development Tour, ARKO, 2010
  • Dramaturgy, written and directed by Taewoong Kim, 2010
  • Author, , 2011
  • Joining Mentoring Programme (Playwriting), Korea Creative Content Agency & All That Story, 2011
  • Excellence Award of Traditional Musical Writing Competition, Sejong Art Center, 2007: (Old man paints)
  • Bronze medal of Culturette Thesis Competition, Amore Pacific Foundation, 1999: The Position and Role of Women in the Internet Era

Indian writer completes writing residency in KoreaIndian writer Manav Kaul, alumnus of Sangam House 2010/11, completed a four-week residency in September 2011 at the Toji Foundation, a scenic, serene spot, nestled among the hills, just outside Seoul. Manav Kaul writes in Hindi and founded the theatre group Aranya in 2004. He has written and directed several plays, including Shakkar ke Paanch Daane (translated into English as Five Grains of Sugar), Peele Scooterwala Aadmi, Bali Aur Shambhu, Ilhaam, Aisa Kehte Hain, Shabd Sangeet and Park (also translated into English under the same name). He has also adapted and directed Sartre’s No Exit into Hindi as Antaheen as well as Vijay Tendulkar’s Ashi Pakhare Yeti into Kannada. He is currently directing a play called Red Sparrow. While at Toji, Manav Kaul wrote two short stories and a play called “Laal pencil” based on a Korean children fiction novel of Soo Hyeon called ‘red pencil’. “Laal Pencil” was presented on 24,25 December 2011 at Prithvi Theatre, Mumbai. In a glowing tribute to Toji, Manav says I think I recommend this place to every writer who feels the need for silence. This is an absolutely silent place and has everything that a writer wants. One month is a very short time for this place. I feel the whole month went really fast for me. And eventually you made such a beautiful relationship with this place… you feel you are leaving your home. It feels like home. People here are so welcoming and nice… it feels as if you came to their house, not to a residency. They take care of you so nicely and never disturb you when you are working.

The Writing Residency at Toji is an annual programme supported by Arts Council Korea (ARKO) and InKo Centre. Indian writers who are alumni of the Sangam House Writing Residency in India are eligible to apply.

About Arts Council Korea (ARKO) Arts Council Korea was established to promote creativity and enjoyment of the arts by supportingdiverse arts and cultural activities in Korea. The Council consists of eleven dedicated professionals of the cultural and arts sector in Korea. The Arts Council also places emphasis on the establishment of arts infrastructure. It facilitates the rise of practice-oriented policy implementation in line with the increasingly sophisticated cultural environment of Korea.

For further information contact InKo Centre T: 044 2436 1224; E: