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#2018SILF BEST LITFEST YET 米氏文学节小结

By | Events

The Shanghai International Literary Festival is China’s leading English-language literary festival, creating a dialogue between writers and readers along Shanghai’s famous Bund. Founded and organized by Michelle Garnaut of the M Restaurant Group, each year the festival brings together emerging and established writers of all genres for a taste of the current literary landscape.

Each festival spans two weekends and includes panel discussions, literary lunches, workshops and live events throughout the week as well as kids’ sessions, big names and more on the weekend. All sessions are uploaded online via the festival podcast (available on iTunes, Stitcher and Google Play).

Over the past 16 years, the Shanghai International Literary Festival has hosted over 1,000 writers and has seen some of the world’s greatest writers and thinkers in conversation.

The star-studded 2018 Shanghai International Literary Festival has come to an end…which only means it’s time to start getting through all of the books we picked up over the past two weeks! 

Thank you to our sponsors, friends of the M festival, our audience members and to everyone at M who made it possible! 

WEEK I

Both of Paul French‘s sessions were dripping in the baddest of 1940’s Shanghai gossip…and packed the house like only Paul French can!

Austin Woerner & Su Wei took us on a journey through the fantastical world of The Invisible Valley, the process behind this epic experiment in translation and gave us a glimpse into their magnetic friendship.

A true literary star, Geoff Dyer, was warm, generous and wry, and discussed what it really means to travel and how it ends up changing us.

Tess Johnston‘s no-frills approach to her experiences during the Vietnam War was humbling, fascinating and had us all in stitches.

Victor Mallet‘s eye-opening session on the role of the holy Ganges River and the vicious cycle it perpetuates sparked a lively discussion during the Q&A.

Laline Paull shared insight into her personal journey of writing both The Bees and The Ice and how it changed her own political and environmental awareness.

Dan Goldman’s sincere approach to graphic illustration was a breath of fresh air and a true testament to the art of graphic novels, video games and the tech future.

MT Anderson shared his latest book, Symphony for the City of the Dead: Dmitri Shostakovich and the Siege of Leningrad, and the fascinating true story behind one of Dmitri Shostakovich’s greatest symphonies, composed as the assault on Leningrad unfolded.

 Palani Mohan transported the audience to the barren Altai Mountains of Mongolia and presented his breathtaking photos of the punishing lives of the Eagle Hunters who live off the land.

Man Booker Prize winning author, Richard Flanagan, discussed his latest novel, First Person, along with his journey to become the writer he is today.

The Great FT Debate packed in more than 200 people for a fast-paced, razor-sharp debate on North Korea and its influence on the world. Thanks again to B5 Salon for offering up the beautiful space!

WEEK II

 Week 2 kicked off with Stewart Lee Beck‘s fast rewind through Chinese history from ancient kings to today’s tech leaders.

Glenn Diaz discussed his latest novel, The Quiet Ones, in an intimate and personal discussion with fellow writers.

For our poetry panel, we were treated to FOUR poets–Eleanor Goodman, Alice Pettway, David Perry and Daryl Lim Wei Jie–who discussed and read from their works.

Nick Bonner charmed us all with his insight into the DPRK and the gorgeous graphics he’s collected over the years. Sign us up for the next Koryo Tour!

Sheng Keyi & Charlotte Wood – through the help of Eric Abrahmsen’s wonderful live translations—discussed their novels, dystopia and what it means to be a woman today.

Our Stella Stars panelists Charlotte Wood, Alexis Wright and Fiona Wright showed us how strength and power can be achieved through writing and how they give voice to the otherwise voiceless.

Alexander Weinstein sent shivers down our spines with his short-story collection about AI gone haywire and what our world might look like in the near future…scary stuff!

Aaliyah Bilal illuminated the oft-forgotten Black lives in the early 20th Century in Shanghai.

Ayse Kulin gave us all inspiration by showing us the lives she followed to write her novel, Last Train to Istanbul, and her own story of becoming Turkey’s most successful author late in life.

Prolific Aboriginal writer, Alexis Wright, discussed her latest book, Tracker, which chronicles the life of Aboriginal activist Tracker Tilmouth.

Osamah Sami, a true performer, shared at once hilarious and poignant stories about his family’s journey as refugees from Iran to Australia…and left us moved.

The Erotic Fiction Competition was a raunchy, naughty and  very liquid affair! Congratulations to the winner!

Tango charmed us with his funny, thoughtful illustrations of how he sees the world…and he even drew portraits of everyone in the crowd, lucky us!

Richard McGregor‘s Asia’s Reckoning is an eye-opening look into the state of Asian geopolitics today and how they have shifted in the past few decades.

Sara Baume, shared her thoughts on creating art, her writing process and how she developed into a full-time writer.

Paul Beatty, a true literary genius, was effortlessly witty and blatantly honest about his craft, his life and his experiences. A true stand-out!

Robert Oliver shared his philosophies on South Pacific cuisine and how we must change our eating habits to incorporate more of what nature has to offer. The lunch was inspired by New Zealand and Samoan cuisine and was a very special treat! Thanks to Robert and M’s Executive Chef, Hamish Waddel!

Peter Conradi discussed the state of Russia’s role as a global player today and his latest book, Who Lost Russia.

Claire Chao shared the unbelievable true story of her family’s rise to power and very steep fall during the Cultural Revolution.

Roseann Lake discussed her fascinating new book, Leftover in China: The Women Shaping the World’s Next Superpower, and the heated Twitter debate surrounding it.

Lenora Chu & York-Chi Harder (moderator) discussed Lenora’s book, Little Soldiers, and how the American and Chinese school system foster different skillsets and how they can learn from each other to provide children the best of both worlds.

Instagram as a career! Michael Zee of SymmetryBreakfast (770,000 followers on Insta) shared his story of how a niche idea became his life’s work and how he has made a veritable career out of his gorgeous photos.

Bob’s Music Blog: Simply Quartet Returns to M on the Bund!

By | Events

It is with great excitement that we welcome back the Simply Quartet to M on the Bund.

The quartet was founded in 2008 under the tutelage of Jensen Lam. The Crystal Room Chamber Music Series was their first performance home! They won first place in the 2009 Shanghai Chamber Music Competition and since then the Simply Quartet has–well simply–not looked back.  After going off to Vienna to study at the famed University of Music and Performing Arts, they have won numerous prizes in prestigious string quartet competitions including, most recently, the First Prize in the Franz Schubert Competition this past February in Austria.  I am sure the entire Shanghai Chamber Music Lovers community will want to be at Glam to proudly welcome home these incredibly talented and now duly recognized musicians!

I am always happy when I learn that the program for the next concert will give us an opportunity to compare two composers in such a way that will help us to have deeper insights into chamber music.  May 13 has such a program.  We have our old friend, Josef Haydn, the Father of the string quartet, with his Opus 74 number one written in 1793 when Haydn was 61 years old.  He wrote this opus after his first trip to London where he heard his quartets played in a large concert setting rather than in an intimate room.  The work is therefore more “orchestral” to fill the larger space and was premiered on his return to London at Hanover Square in 1794.  As always with Haydn, there are delightful surprises and we will discuss those before the concert in May.

While Haydn is viewed as the quintessential composer of the Classical era, Robert Schumann is often referred to as the quintessential early romantic composer, more concerned with emotional yearning rather than classical restraint and balance.  In his early piano music he eschews the classical forms of Haydn, Mozart and Beethoven and draws from literature and song cycles to create large scale works made of up smaller song like pieces but which hold together in an overall cohesive framework.  These works represented a truly revolutionary change in music history.

It is therefor a little surprising that in the early 1840s, after years of writing avant-garde piano pieces and songs, Schumann tried his hand at writing symphonies and chamber music in more or less the mold of the earlier Classical composers.  String quartets by that time would have been seen as historical yet highly respected musical forms – and writing them would be a bit like modernist poets trying their hand at writing, say, sonnets.  We might understand Schumann’s change partly by the fact that his father-in-law was a very conservative musical pedagogue and tended to look down on Robert’s compositions.  Also times were a-changing and there was a revisionist sentiment in the air pushing against what were seen as the excesses of earlier Romanticism. Schumann was also increasingly suffering from the depression that in ten years would force him to have himself committed to an asylum.  In any event, Schumann wrote a string of chamber masterpieces during this time including his three string quartets and his famous piano quintet and piano quartet.  Romantic composers generally stepped carefully into the earlier classical world due to the enormous shadow cast by Beethoven and we can find echos of his work–along with hints of our Haydn and Mozart–in the Schumann’s third string quartet that we will hear in our program.

So please come and welcome home the Simply Quartet and hear this wonderful program that they have prepared especially for us!

Bob Martin

For those of you who like a little advance listening, you might try the following:

For the Haydn, the Amadeus Quartet: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=BvfO5L5SAts
For the Schumann, the Quartetto Italiano: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=08hmey8e0js

Glam’s April Vegan Brunch [SAT APR 7]

By | Events

Glam’s gorgeous, KOL-approved VEGAN & GLUTEN-FREE brunch is back on SAT April 7th! Our seasonal, local and deliciously creative menu will have your palate and Instagram in sheer delight!

时令、美味、健康、独具创意的魅蓝全素早午餐自一月开启以来,受到越来越多的关注,食客们均赞不绝口,满意而归… 下一次的素食早午餐将于4月7日周六进行,马上预定你的餐桌吧!

Show your body some love with our healthy, very yummy and beautiful vegan brunch…book your table before it’s too late!

Glam’s Monthly Vegan Brunch!

By | Events

Glam’s monthly VEGAN brunch starts on January 7th, 2018…Treat your body right with a healthy, sustainable and delicious vegan brunch to make you forget all of your holiday sins…book your table soon!

For the full menu, please click here.

2017 Shanghai International Literary Festival Recap

By | Events, News

We made it! After a whirlwind two weeks, we have just wrapped up our 15th annual Shanghai Litfest and with over 3,000 ticket sales, we could not have been happier with the turnout!

We’re already busily planning the next Litfest…dates are March 8-21, 2018…so stay tuned for any updates!

A big thank you to all of our sponsors who made it all possible, to all of our authors who made us think, ask and discuss, to all of our fantastically enthusiastic audience members and, of course, to everyone at M on the Bund & Glam who worked tirelessly to bring a literary and cultural feast to Shanghai.

Here’s a short clip from weekend one…               And a quick review of weekend two!

The brilliant and gorgeous Amy Tan discussed her life as a writer as well as her new memoir, Where the Past Begins, which is still COMPLETELY UNDER WRAPS…what a lucky audience we were!

The quietly powerful Claire Keegan showed us what it means to be a true master of your craft with a reading of her short story, Foster, followed by a Q&A.

The Great FT Debate was truly great…a fun, passionate and fast-paced debate (following strict guidelines, of course) divided the audience on whether western democracy has been discredited.

Anne Sebba illustrated the undercover lives of the many women living in Paris under the Nazi occupation. The famous women who fought against them…and those who collaborated…will surprise you!

Witi Ihimaera, Lee Tamahori and Anne O’Brien brought a piece of New Zealand to Shanghai and shared with us Maori culture, their journeys to fame and their experiences of bringing their visions to the big screen.

Thank you again and we’ll see you all next year! 

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