BBC tunes into East End’s big Mela Fest for first time
DANCERS, musicians and curry makers have been getting ready for Europe’s biggest Bangladesh Mela Festival in London’s East End at the weekend. A final dress rehearsal for dancers was held in the week, ready for Sunday’s big parade
DANCERS, musicians and curry makers have been getting ready for Europe’s biggest Bangladesh Mela Festival in London's East End at the weekend.
A final dress rehearsal for dancers (pictured) was held at Whitechapel’s Brady arts centre in the week, ready for Sunday’s big parade which is being broadcast live on BBC radio.
Around 80,000 spectators are expected to line Brick Lane for the procession winding its way through the streets of Spitalfields to nearby Weavers Field park for the Bengali New Year celebrations.
The procession of dancers and drummers is being lead by the Bangla Queen in a 12ft long peacock structure operated from inside.
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The celebrations are being broadcast for the first time by the BBC’s Asian Network, with international and UK acts.
Presenter Adil Ray starts the day’s festive broadcasts during his breakfast show from 7am, followed by other shows throughout the day with live links to the performance stages.
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A children’s play area and food stalls are out from 12 noon around Brick Lane, Allen Gardens and Weavers Fields.