New York

Dirt by Robert Schneider

Dirt by Robert Schneider

On a recent fall evening, I ventured into New York City’s Lower East Side, and trotted up the stoop of the 4th Street Theatre to catch its latest production, Dirt. The one-man show about an Iraqi flower peddler named “Sad” is an entire ocean and language away from its origins in early-‘90s Austria. It’s based in part on stories told to Austrian novelist Robert Schneider by an Iraqi roommate while he lived and worked in Vienna. Coming on the heels of his 1992 book Schlafes Bruder (Brother of Sleep), which was later adapted into the 1995 film of the same name, Dirt was published in Austrian in 1993 as Dreck, and proved a successful foray into theater for Schneider. 

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Singapore Literature Festival 2014: Rich Words, Poor Words

Singapore Literature Festival 2014: Rich Words, Poor Words

The inaugural Singapore Literature Festival found its way to NYC’s Upper East Side on Saturday with a pair of ticketed reading events at the 92nd Street Y. The first, titled “Rich Words, Poor Words” featured authors discussing the divide between haves and have-nots in Singapore society, and the role language plays. 

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Singapore Literature Festival 2014: Twenty-First Century Family

Singapore Literature Festival 2014: Twenty-First Century Family

The second panel of the Singapore Literature Festival’s Saturday afternoon of ticketed readings at the 92nd Street Y was titled “The Twenty-First Century Family,” and focused on modern dynamics and pressures between parents and children in Singaporean society. It’s worth noting that the larger festival’s participating author count featured eight flying in from Singapore, and six based in America. Noteworthy, because all three of this panel’s authors were examples of Singaporeans who travel to the US to study and/or work—not a few choosing life as expatriates, rather than return home. 

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