I’d like to welcome you all and our honoured guests Lady and Lord Dholakia. Lord Dholakia took up the social justice cause 60 year ago in this country, working through politics from 1961 when he was first elected to Brighton Borough Council and then just over 20 years ago elevated to the House of Lords where he is the Deputy Leader of the LibDem party. I have known Lord Dholakia for also 20 years now and he is a rare politician true to his word and always looking after the community affairs. Thus I have built up an enormous amount of respect for him and thank you Navnit ji for coming and joining us on this our very first British Asian arts performance from our young artists, who need institutional platforms like ours here to develop their arts.
This institution, the Peepul Centre, and its Theatre here is something that was built with exactly that vision in mind, by one of our visionary persons, Rita Patel. I’d like to thank her for doing such a splendid job of building this magnificent centre for our communities and this theatre with the Arts Council’s help.
The Arts Council has now kindly rekindled that relationship with us after 10 years or so to help give our arts a chance.For any new art form to develop we as the institution and our young creative artists need that help, so thank you Arts Council.
Also the Leicester Council extended a small help and my thanks to them.
Finally our very own ArtsHub members, Dharambir Singh ji from the Sitar Music Society, Nilima Devi ji from the classical Kathak academy and Smita Vednerkar ji representing the Bharat Natyam dance form from the Nupur Arts dance academy. The ArtsHub members teach our youth the classical Indian dance and music. As you all know Bollywood music and dance give us the final product but the fundamentals that lie behind it are lost in the stratosphere, which we need to preserve for a new artform to develop from the British Asian perspective. I want to thank our Artshub members for doing exactly that by teaching our youth those fundamentals. And you will see through our rising stars in this Mehfil performance the unique take they are developing for British tastes.
Chairman Peepul Centre