In July 2018, we celebrated 50 years of the Booker Prize with Man Booker 50, a weekend-long festival featuring a host of top novelists and former prize winners, discussing their works and the literary process.
One of a number of special 'in conversation' events from that weekend was this one, which featured writers Kazuo Ishiguro and Michael Ondaatje on stage together, for the first time ever. In an unchaired discussion, the pair talked about their creative processes, their inspirations growing up, and how that went on to shape their fiction. Ishiguro and Ondaatje also drew on the wide range of other influences that have informed their respective work, especially cinema and music, as they divided their conversation into three distinct sections; ‘Envy of the Other Arts’, ‘Boyhood Thrillers’ and ‘Notebooks’.
Kazuo Ishiguro, was born in Nagasaki, Japan, in 1954, but moved to Britain at the age of five. He won the Booker Prize in 1989 for Remains of the Day, and was awarded the Nobel Prize in Literature in 2017.
Although best known as a novelist, Michael Ondaatje’s work also encompasses poetry, memoir, and film. Born in Sri Lanka, but a resident of Canada since the early 1960s. He won the Man Booker Prize in 1992 for The English Patient, and, at Man Booker 50, was awarded the Golden Man Booker for the same novel, as the best work of fiction to have won the prize across its 50 year history.
The show must go on(line)
Sadly, for everyone’s safety, our venues are currently closed. But you can still get your Southbank Centre fix online. We will continue to share inspiring and thought-provoking arts stories through our website and social channels.
As a charity, we rely on ticket sales for a huge chunk of our income. But now they’ve stopped. And it's a huge worry to us, and the people we work with. We all need the escape of art and culture; it can inspire and unite us. So please – if you can afford to – consider a donation to the Southbank Centre today, to help us be there for you in the future.