Zee London Mela
The London Mela is a celebration of South Asian culture, which takes place in Southall park. In previous years this free festival has taken place in Gunnersbury Park on the first weekend of September. The event boasts live music on several main stages featuring British Asian and international artists and the best in contemporary and classical dance.
The 15th anniversary Mela in 2017 saw more than 26,000 people descend on Gunnersbuty Park for what was claimed to be London’s biggest community event and Europe’s biggest festival of South Asian culture – a feast of music, dance, performance, food and family fun, featuring some of the world’s biggest and best South Asian artists. Among the line-up were: ‘Desi Crew, who set the crowd alight with their furious blend of production and dance’, iconic British-Indian rapper Hard Kaur, contemporary Bhangra superstar Miss Pooja, India’s premiere exponents of political ska, The Ska Vengers and the godfathers of cross-genre British-Indian experimentation Asian Dub Foundation’. Introducing Hard Kaur, the Mayor of London Sadiq Khan said: “it’s events like this, taking place in all corners of the city, that showcase London at its diverse, lively and open best.”
Mixing top artists from the subcontinent with British Asian urban artists, the London Mela offers dance, comedy and cabaret, Asian-influenced street theatre and circus as well as stalls and exhibitions and a fantastic array of food. The word Mela comes from the Sanskrit “to meet” and is related to “milana” the verb to tune. It is commonly used to describe a large gathering of people celebrating artistic, religious or political events – a fair or a festival. The 2017 ZEE London Mela was sponsored by ZEE TV and supported by the Mayor of London, Arts Council England and Ealing Council.
The celebration of South Asian culture, the London Mela, takes place in Gunnersbury Park at the end of the summer.