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In Other Words writing and ideas program and Bubble Tea Garden return for OzAsia Festival’s final weekend

Bubble Tea Garden - OzAsia

In Other Words, OzAsia Festival’s thought-provoking writing and ideas program, returns to Adelaide Festival Centre this Friday 3 to Sunday 5 November. Curated by writer and comedian Jennifer Wong (presenter of ABC’s Chopsticks or Fork?), with guest curators Sami Shah(comedian, writer, journalist and broadcaster) and writer and restaurateur Durkhanai Ayubi (Parwana: Recipes and Stories from an Afghan Kitchen), In Other Words remains the largest gathering of Asian and Asian Australian writers and thinkers in the country.

Bubble Tea Garden - OzAsia
Bubble Tea Garden – OzAsia

Audiences can expect lively discussions on everything from race, power, community, sexuality, gender, family, food and more when over 60 Asian and Asian Australian writers come together for OzAsia Festival’s final weekend. 

Between In Other Words sessions, the whole family can enjoy the beloved Taiwanese delicacy that has taken the world by storm at Festival Plaza’s Bubble Tea Garden overlooking the lively Lucky Dumpling Market.

In Other Words curator Jennifer Wong: “It’s an incredibly exciting time to be a fan of writing by Asian Australians and Asian authors internationally. Distinctive new voices are making themselves heard alongside established writers, and I’m thrilled that you’ll encounter both up close at In Other Words.

“Whether you’re into fiction or non-fiction, memoir or politics, romance or food, pop culture or poetry, there’s something to delight, enlighten, and challenge you at our celebration of storytelling and big ideas.”

Adolfo Aranjuez - In Other Words - OzAsia
Adolfo Aranjuez – In Other Words – OzAsia

Sessions on Friday 3 November include the Opening Night Gala: A Moment of Outspokenness featuring eight local and international writers, including Sunday Times bestseller Shelley Parker-Chan and Junkee Managing Editor Nick Bhasin, sharing personal stories about the power of speaking out; and at the University of Adelaide, the Asian Australian Identities: Past, Present, Future conference will celebrate 24 years of the Asian Australian Studies Research Network.

This Saturday 4 November, MasterChef favourites Poh Ling Yeow (What I Cook When Nobody’s Watching) and Sarah Tiong (Modern Asian) join forces with Benjamin Law for a chat about exploring their Malaysian heritages through food in A Night with Poh Ling Yeow and Sarah Tiong at Dunstan Playhouse – limited tickets are still available here. For one night only, Star Kitchen and Bar’s menu will exclusively feature recipes by Poh and Sarah – book a table here

K-pop fans will love Beyond the Story, the first official book published in celebration of BTS’s 10th anniversary. Join New York Times best-selling author Myeongseok Kang live from Seoul to answer all your questions about the world’s biggest K-pop band, BTS. Make a day of it and join the Korean Cultural Centre for two free workshops being held at Festival Theatre’s Dress Circle foyer – Drawing BTS Songs and Korean poems from 12pm and BTS K-Pop Dance Workshop from 1:15pm. Registrations of interest encouraged here.

Catch up on the latest pop culture news when ABC Radio National show Stop Everything! takes over Adelaide Festival Centre’s Banquet Room with a live broadcast featuring hosts Benjamin Law and Beverley Wang chatting to OzAsia Festival artists.

Younger audiences will learn how to write jokes and wacky storylines with author and comedian Oliver Phommavanh when he presents Thai-riffic Jokes & Stories, and children aged 3 to 7 will delight in two Storytime sessions with Freda Chiu’s A Trip to the Hospital and Dinalie Dabarera’s Quiet Time with My SeeyaTeenagers will love Young Adult Characters Who Will Steal Your Heart featuring Chinese-American author and Australian Survivor contestant Wai Chim.

Other highly anticipated sessions include On Fiction and Race featuring Miles Franklin award winner Shankari Chandran (Chai Time at Cinnamon Gardens) and Karina Robles Bahrin (The Accidental Malay) with host Sami Shah, and the funny fan favourite, Closing Night Debate where teams featuring Jason Chong and Sarah Malik will debate whether Australia needs more tiger parents. An event so serious that the outcome will be decided by one true judge: audience applause.

Adelaide Festival Centre CEO & Artistic Director Douglas Gautier AM: “Join us at Adelaide Festival Centre for In Other Words, an excellent program of big conversations in an accessible and enjoyable format.

“To celebrate 50 years of friendship between Adelaide and George Town, Penang we look forward to welcoming three Malaysian writers as part of an exchange with George Town Literary Festival: Shih-Li KowWan Phing Lim and Saras Manickam.”

OzAsia Festival Artistic Director Annette Shun Wah“After two weeks of breathtaking performances and wonderful audiences, it’s hard to believe we have only one more weekend to go. But what a weekend! More than 60 great minds from Asia and Australia join us for our writing and ideas program In Other Words, which promises to be provocative, funny, insightful and – with the addition of Poh Ling Yeow and Sarah Tiong – tantalisingly delicious. 

“I’ll be staying refreshed at the Bubble Tea Garden and catching the beats of Saudara Sound System and rappers 1300. Feeding the mind, body and spirit OzAsia style!”

OzAsia’s Lucky Beats free live performance program at Lucky Dumpling Market continues this week with SAtheCollective’s Nothing, But Just A Moment direct from Singapore, Asian Australian collective Big Bao and returning after rave reviews at OzAsia 2022 are Adelaide’s very own supergroup Hyoshi in Counterpoint and boundary-defying hip hop powerhouse 1300.

Andy Chia & Natalie Alexandra Tse - OzAsia
Andy Chia & Natalie Alexandra Tse – OzAsia

Two shows in OzAsia Festival’s final week fusing the traditional and contemporary are Rainbow Chan’s theatrical debut in The Bridal Lament, and Saudara Sound System – blending hip hop and electronic beats with traditional Balinese gamelan and hypnotic Balinese dance.

Malaysia’s Five Arts Centre will return to OzAsia Festival with their new documentary performance work A Notional History, calling for wider perspectives on history. Don’t miss companion piece Punk Protest Propaganda: The Political Art of Fahmi Reza, exhibiting at Nexus Arts Gallery.

For more information about In Other Words, visit 

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