The dates for Scotland’s biggest free multi-cultural festival, the O2 Glasgow Mela, have been announced. Kelvingrove Park in Glasgow will host some of the biggest names in urban, Bhangra and Bollywood music from 12 noon until 8pm on Saturday 23 and Sunday 24 June. The weekend promises vibrant music, dance, entertainment and live performances on three stages across the whole park.
With the support of title sponsor O2, who have renewed their commitment to the Glasgow Mela for the third consecutive year, it is the first time the festival will expand across the entire park. Families and festival-goers will be greeted with a wash of colour and a wave of sound from the Commonwealth Stage, set to be built at the Gibson Street entrance. This is in addition to the Main Stage, traditionally positioned on the opposite side of the park, and the Mehfill Stage set to captivate those travelling between the two.
Dancers representing the traditions of Bollywood, Scottish Highland and Colombian dancing brought a flavour of the O2 Glasgow Mela to the city’s skyline today (Tuesday 8 May). Dressed in full costume with toes a tapping the trio took to the roof of O2’s offices at Skypark Glasgow to portray the variety of performance on offer at the annual extravaganza. They also unveiled a stunning new logo for the 2012 event, which embodies the colour and customs of an event renowned as the most spectacular celebration of cultural diversity across the country.
Forestry Commission Scotland will support O2 Glasgow Mela for the first time by funding an innovative collaboration with Joanna Boyce. The Creative Art Works artist has been commissioned to design a vibrant new look ‘kids’ zone’. The Indian Council for Cultural Relations will again bring international artists from across India to delight a home crowd.
Families are being urged to pack a rug and save their space on ‘Picnic Hill’. This new, large open space has being introduced for 2012 from which people can savour a feast of exotic food while enjoying a feast of music, dance, entertainment and live performances on offer across the whole park.
Jill Miller, Director of Culture at Glasgow Life said: “I am pleased that with O2’s support we will continue to grow the Glasgow Mela in 2012. We will bring back last year’s successful two-day format and expand our offering to encompass the entire park. That means more music, more dance, more arts and more exotic food for Mela fans to savour.
“The O2 Glasgow Mela is a truly wonderful, inclusive, family event that showcases Glasgow as the multicultural and multi racial city it is.
Gosia Manka, Channel Marketing Manager at O2 said: "O2 are delighted to be a part of the cultural extravaganza at the O2 Glasgow Mela again this year. We hope the many attendees of the event will have a great time and come to visit the O2 international bus and camper van to make free international calls to friends and family, enjoy the free face painting and capture this fun occasion with an O2 Glasgow Mela photo”.
Hanzala Malik MSP, Chair of the O2 Glasgow Mela Advisory Group, added: “I am confident this will be the best festival yet. It is certainly going to be the biggest, thanks to the continued collaboration with O2. Together we have seen O2 Glasgow Mela grow in size and popularity to become one of the most keenly anticipated and enjoyed events on the summer calendar by people of all ages and cultures.”
Since its launch 22 years ago, during Glasgow’s 1990 European City of Culture festivities, the two-day extravaganza, based on the traditions and customs of the Indian sub-continent, has continued to grow in popularity. O2 Glasgow Mela regularly attracts crowds of more than 25,000 visitors, a vibrant mix of people who come together to embrace and celebrate the many cultures that strongly influence everything about the city of Glasgow and its people.
Event organisers Glasgow Life are finalising the two-day line up, which is set to feature a fantastic mix of cultural musicians, dance acts and interactive arts performers. Headline acts together with a full range of other attractions and activities being staged at the carnival will be announced soon, keep an eye on www.glasgowmela.com