Our wonderful friends at Dialogues of Diaspora have done something awesome. Get ready to sit-down and listen-in to eye-opening conversations in their brand-new three-part series which sheds a unique light on the South Asian Diaspora. They unpack interesting views on identity, history, music, fashion – share untold stories and ask thought-provoking questions. We’re so excited to share the first episode with you.
Created by our incredibly talented friends Sanvir Singh Chana and Ramneet Baidwan, they say of the three-part series:–
"Dialogues of Diaspora is a way for us to reconnect. In some ways, like me, this project is 26 years in the making. Hounslow, a rich South Asian pocket in West London was a somewhat welcoming place to grow up. Nurtured in the comfort of our culture, reflected in the Gurdwaras and pungent smells gently wafting from the litter of Punjabi restaurants frequented by the many faces alike my own. But any interest in my own heritage and faith was outweighed by the fluctuating need to fit in at school, and at sixteen, without a platform for my British/Asian identity to resonate, I only drifted further away from that comfort into a place of false assimilation.
If only I returned home to regularly feel part of the national story, to see myself reflected in mainstream media, I wouldn’t have contemplated the fate of my long hair. However, I felt the blame could no longer be inflicted on the industry if I wasn’t doing anything about it, and fortunately, a friend on the opposite side of the world felt the same. Together, Ramneet Baidwan and I, with an arduous eight-hour time difference, carefully crafted this talk show and two short films (to be later released) that we hope will inspire the next generation with the comfort to be themselves. Our passion for story-telling and platforming the vast history and narratives of the South Asian diaspora found the curious and energetic team and Dishoom. The sole purpose of pursuing this project was envoked by emotion; Dialogues of Diaspora is a way for us all to reconnect."
Episode One kicks off with Shamil and Shalina (who is brilliant and lovely in equal measure) whimsically reflecting on South Asian British history. From chapatis in World War One trenches to school history lessons and the importance of shared stories – it’s not to be missed.
The sun is momentarily out again. Calendars are fast filling up. There’s many a thing to do and many a friend to meet. And if we may kindly add to the excitement and the plan-making, here’s our list of what we’re looking forward to in September.
While we were at Edinburgh Fringe Festival, we caught Evening Conversations, an engaging show by Sudha Bhuchar. We caught up with her after the show to talk about her journey and her views on South Asian representation on screen, which you can read below. And for those who didn’t walk down the cobbled streets of the city or stumble into an impromptu performance this year, we highly recommend it for 2024.
Each year as August dawns, the streets and rooms and corners of Edinburgh fill with music, art, laughter and song. Wander into grand halls and pokey pubs, as the morning sun rises or in the dark of night, to see creations of every kind as part of the Edinburgh Fringe Festival. In honour of this wonderful celebration of the performing arts (and as a little treat), here’s a special edition Dishoom Loves, covering all the acts we’ve circled on our festival programme.
For anyone looking to learn or read more on Partition, this page holds a series of resources, for all ages, created by people knowledgeable and knowing about such matters. It is by no means definitive – we have simply found them to be useful, inspiring and accessible.