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Weekend of events for Diwali

Published on Wednesday, October 19, 2016

DIWALI-themed musical events, theatrical stage shows and a city centre extravaganza will be among the celebrations taking place in Leicester this weekend.

The events are part of a two-week programme of festivities celebrating Diwali across the city, following the hugely-popular Diwali lights switch-on on Sunday.

The story of Hanuman the Hero - a superhero with a monkey's body who embodies eternal strength and youth - comes to Belgrave Neighbourhood Centre, on Thursday, October 20, thanks to the Aakash Odedra Company, Curve Theatre and Leicester Belgrave Mela. 

Curve will also be hosting its Family Diwali Day on Saturday, October 22, from 10am to 4pm, featuring sitar recitals, storytelling and live performances.

Leicester Market will also come alive with the sights and sounds of Diwali with regular performances by the Bollywood Dance Troupe, between 7am and 6pm on the Saturday.

The city centre, including Humberstone Gate and the Clock Tower, will also host a day-long programme of Diwali events throughout Saturday, October 22.

The Diwali Mela Bazaar will showcase mouth-watering Indian food and drink, colourful clothes and sparkling jewellery from 10am to 4pm, while Kohinoor Radio will present its own Diwali celebrations with traditional Punjabi musicians, singers and dancers, from 11am to 4pm.

At the Clock Tower itself, Chutney! will tell an enchanting story-telling experience of a princess who falls under the spell of an evil spirit, complete with live music, dancing and singing. Performances take place at 1pm and 3pm.

Later on the Saturday evening, New Walk Museum and Art Gallery will host its Diwali Fashion Show, with a chance to view the Diwali exhibition from 6pm to 6.45pm, followed by the fashion show from 6.45pm to 8pm. 

Activities and events will continue on Sunday, October 23, starting with a rangoli masterclass at Belgrave Neighbourhood Centre, in which international rangoli artist Janak Chauhan will be passing on his creative skills. Sessions take place from 11.30am to 2.30pm, and 2.30pm to 5.30pm.

Spiritual celebrations reflecting on the peace, happiness and prosperity inspired by Diwali will take place from 5.30pm to 7.30pm at the Brahma Kumaris World Spiritual University event tat Harmony House, Ross Walk.

Two musical events will round off the weekend’s celebrations. Amit and Sumit Kumar will take to the stage at De Montfort Hall for a magical journey through Indian cinema, celebrating legends Kishore Kumar, Rajesh Khanna and R D Burman and performing their greatest hits. 

The show takes place from 7pm on Sunday, October 23. 

Nearby Fraser Noble Hall will also be ringing to the sounds of Indian music, with ‘Sangam’ -  a meeting of musical journeys seeing three renowned Indian classical musicians performing together for the first time. The show runs from 7pm to 9pm.

The two-week programme of Diwali events continues the following week, including a chance to visit the exquisite Jain Centre in Oxford Street, and culminating in the Diwali Day celebrations on Sunday, October 30. 

Leicester assistant city mayor for culture, leisure and sport, Cllr Piara Singh Clair, said: “There are so many events taking place this year, catering for all tastes and showcasing so many different facets of Indian culture.

“Younger visitors can get involved in art, craft and music workshops, while older visitors can sample the very best in traditional and contemporary food and drink.

“Diwali has been a major event in the city’s calendar for many years, and this stunning programme of events gives everyone across the city the chance to experience it.”

Full details of all the events, including booking information and ticket prices where applicable, are available at www.visitleicester.info 

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