The sun’s out, spirits are high and everyone’s in the mood for some adventure. From July 4th-13th, the ultimate getaway experience will take place right here on the shores of Vancouver. For its third year, the Indian Summer Festival will provide locals with a beguiling glimpse of the Indian subcontinent. This 10-day event is a joyful celebration that uses music, literature, film, business, politics, and food to bridge the cultural gap.
Produced by the Indian Summer Arts Society (ISAS) in collaboration with Teamwork Productions, and presented by Simon Fraser University, the festival is a cultural cocktail that mixes luminary speakers with performance arts, hands-on activities, and sumptuous tasting events.
Over the past two festival editions, audiences were spellbound as politician and philosopher MJ Akbar explored the dichotomy of India and Pakistan, renowned violinist Dr L Subramaniam put on a virtuoso performance, and Bollywood star Tabu discussed Life of Pi with its author Yann Martel. Pair this heady cultural concoction with food tastings, well-being workshops and free public dance classes, and it becomes clear why this festival has quickly become a landmark on the Vancouver calendar.
“We’ve had an incredible response to the festival so far,” says Indian Summer co-founder Sirish Rao. “Our 2013 lineup takes things to the next level – from discussions on global politics, and what constitutes urban happiness, to free laughing yoga and dance classes, there is something for everyone. This is what cultural democracy is all about.”
Highlights this year include the Opening Gala, which launches with a tasting event curated by culinary guru Vikram Vij. Sample South Asia’s frying, simmering, sizzling diversity as you chomp your way through the regions. Musical group Rajasthan Josh will lend their distinct blend of rumbling percussions punctuated by soulful strings to the festivities. Additionally, activists like actor Shabana Azmi and director Deepa Mehta will weigh in on issues impacting the global community.