Britain's Proms go Bollywood


June 18, 2010 Updated Apr 9, 2009 at 8:11 AM EDT

The Proms, the British music institution, are taking on an Indian flavour this year as Bollywood glamour comes to the traditional concert season.

The eight-week classical music concert series will have a special "Indian Voices" day featuring stars from the subcontinent.

The BBC Promenade Concerts at London's Royal Albert Hall culminate in the Last Night of the Proms, a flag-waving burst of patriotic British songs broadcast around the world.

The "Indian Voices" day on August 16 will feature a range of music and dance from the country, including classical vocal pieces and folk tunes from around the subcontinent.

The events will begin at the Royal Albert Hall with a concert of north Indian classical khayal singing, featuring sarangi (short-necked fiddle) player Pandit Ram Narayan, Manjiri Asnare Kelkar, Rajan and Sajan Mishra, plus Kerala youth ensemble Asima.

The day includes free perfomances of folk music and dance from Rajasthan, including ghoomer dances, ras and garba dances from Gujarat and lessons in how to dance Bollywood style.

The evening concert features singer and Indian television star Shaan and his band with Honey's Dance Academy in what is advertised as an "all-singing, all-dancing Bollywood extravaganza".

Meanwhile drum and bass artist Goldie has been asked to compose a new piece for the BBC Concert Orchestra on the theme of evolution, to celebrate the 150th anniversary of naturalist Charles Darwin's book "On the Origin of Species".

And the Ukulele Orchestra of Great Britain will play reworkings of tunes such as "The Ride of the Valkyries" and the Sex Pistols' "Anarchy in the UK".

This year's Last Night of the Proms on September 12 will feature five open-air "Proms in the Park" concerts in Hyde Park in London, Manchester in northwest England, Glasgow in Scotland, Swansea in Wales and Hillsborough Castle in Northern Ireland.

The events feature their own concerts plus a live broadcast from the Royal Albert Hall for a mass sing-along. A further 16 giant screens will be erected in cities around Britain.

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