Sunil Bhandari is a poet disguised as a corporate executive. His book of poetry ‘Of Love and Other Abandonments’ was an Amazon bestseller. His second book ‘Of journeys & Other Ways to Get Lost’ is just out. His poetry podcast ‘Uncut Poetry’, is a huge hit.”
Jocelyn Cullity’s Amah & the Silk-Winged Pigeons, set in 1857 Lucknow, won the 2018 American Book Fest Best Book Awards for Historical Fiction. Translated into French and Tamil, the book is also available in India in English with Rupa Publications. Jocelyn’s second novel, The Envy of Paradise, was a finalist in the 2020 International Book Awards. Her short stories and essays have been published in the United States, Canada, and India.
Jocelyn is Associate Professor in the BFA in Creative Writing program at Truman State University. She lives with her two children and husband, the film scholar Prakash Younger, in Columbia, Missouri, USA.
Rohini Chowdhury is an established literary translator and the author of several children’s books. Her published writing, in Hindi and English, covers several literary genres including translations, fiction and non-fiction. She is published by Penguin Random House India, Scholastic India, and Rupa Publications. Rohini primarily translates from pre-modern and modern Hindi into English. Her most recent translation is Tulsidas’s Ramcharitmanas, a sixteenth-century retelling of the story of Ram, unanimously regarded as the greatest achievement of Hindi literature. Committed to the promotion of literacy amongst children, Rohini used her extensive experience in the field to run online creative writing classes for children across the UK during the recent school closures. She has also participated in Microsoft’s ‘Skype in the Classroom’ online education initiative, conducting creative writing classes in more than twenty schools across the Americas, Europe, Africa and the Middle-east.
Hamed Soleimanzadeh is a film critic, filmmaker, actor, author and a university professor. He is the official member of Iranian Short Film Association (ISFA) and has been part of Selection Committees and Juries of many national and international film festivals including SCHLINGEL International Film Festival (Germany), Isfahan International Film Festival for Children & Youth (Iran), River International Film Festival (Italy), Seoul Guro Youth Film Festival (South Korea), Kolibri international film festival for children and adolescents (Bolivia), Dytiatko International Children Media Festival (Ukraine), Hero and Time International Film Festival (Russia) among others. He was the Head of the International Department of the 31st International Film Festival for Children and Youth and the 31st Iran International Academic Theatre Festival. He has made six short films and his publications include ‘Daily Deliriums of the Sleeping Man’ & ‘A Cinema in Iran: Sohrab Shahid Cinema’ and ‘A Glimpse into the History of French Cinema’.
Mahesh Dattani has been working in Theatre as a playwright, director and actor for the past forty years. His plays are performed all over the world and have been translated to many languages. His popular works include ‘Final Solutions’ which won the Sahitya Akademi Award (1998), ‘Dance Like a Man’- Lillete Dubey’s Production, which has been running for the last twenty years, reaching a thousand performances soon. His other plays include ‘The Big Fat City’, ‘Where Did I Leave My Purdah’, ‘Gauhar’, and ‘Snapshots of a Fervid Sunrise’. Recently he directed his own short play ‘Untouchable’ for an international streaming platform starring Roshan Mathew, Jim Sarbh and Puja Sarup.
He is the Artistic Director of Playpen Performing Arts Trust, a group dedicated to producing new theatre writings. He has taught playwriting, directing, acting in institutions like Columbia University, University of Malaysia, NSD, FTII, DSM, MP School of Drama among others.
Leslie Francis D’Gama, was formerly Vice President and Head, Trainer Development Group of
IL&FS Education and Technology Services Limited. He holds an M.A., a B.Ed, and Diploma in Training & Development from Indian Society for Training & Development and is an accredited FIRO-B Practitioner. He has conducted sessions in Language, Communications, Team work, Management, Leadership and Interpersonal Behaviour at institutions like British Council, M N Dastur, Nicco Engineering, Spencer’s Retail, Tata Telecom, Bengal NRI Complex, Luxmi Tea, Bisk Farm, Child Rights and You (CRY) and educational institutions such as Nirma Institute of Technology, Gujarat, IISWBM and Jadavpur University Management College. Earlier he taught English and Mathematics at St. Xavier’s Collegiate School, Kolkata for two decades. Currently Leslie mentors the Kolkata development centre of Quantum Inventions (a Singapore based software product company) and assists in learning and development functions across Singapore, Malaysia, Indonesia and India. He is also deeply engaged in training teachers in Online Education and is a Google Certified Educator.