Summer Solstice Festival


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People from all over the UK will be arriving in Leeds City Centre later this month to celebrate the break of dawn on the longest day of the year, at the 2014 South Asian Arts-UK, Summer Solstice festival.

Brimming with mystical, musical charm, the all-night concert is the only one of its kind in the UK and is taking place in the heart of Leeds City Centre.

For those new to the festival the performance aims to highlight the magical qualities of an oral ancient, music tradition that is rarely performed.

PERFORMING: Tabla (a type of drum) artist, Shahbaz Hussain, will be just one of the many Indian performers, appearing at the annual festival

PERFORMING: Tabla (a type of drum) artist, Shahbaz Hussain, will be just one of the many Indian performers, appearing at the annual festival

Running for its third year, the extravaganza of music encompasses a unique array of internationally acclaimed artists of Indian classical music who will take the audience on a ‘raga’ and a journey from the sunset through to sunrise.

The inspiration behind the festival comes from Keranjeet Kaur Virdee, Chief Executive of SAA-uk, who established the concert in response to increased artists demands.

After the success of previous year’s events, she says she cannot wait for June’s festivities to begin and explained where the event came from.

She said: “The idea came to me when I heard musicians talking about the compositions of music they spend a long time practicing but rarely get chance to perform.

“A raga uses a series of musical notes upon which a melody is constructed and is associated with a time, season or emotion.

“Rarely do musicians have the opportunity to play late at night and into the early morning, times which evoke the true essence of the music that the unknown composers aim to capture.

“This festival gives the artists the chance to showcase their musical abilities to a wide audience.”

For regular fans of Indian classical music, the festival presents an outstanding line up of seven internationally renowned musicians; Ustad Harjinderpal Sing, Ramprapanna Bhattacharya, Kousic Sen, Ustad Surjit Singh, Manjit Singh Rasiya, in addition to two artists being flown in especially from India to perform; Awad Pratap Balasaheb and Uday Bhawalkar.

The Summer Solstice marks the day with the most hours of daylight and the fewest hours of darkness, falling this year, on Saturday 21st June.

If you would like to attend the unique annual event, or just find out more information about the acts performing, visit www.saa-uk.org

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