Dance and music take centre stage at the Edinburgh Mela

The multicultural arts festival announces part of its 2012 programme

Dance and music take centre stage at the Edinburgh Mela

Those familiar with the August festival scene would probably agree that the Edinburgh Mela has occasionally struggled for attention, too often carelessly over-looked for some of the bigger kids in the playground. Not so this year, with a new director and diverse programme suggesting it’s the quiet(er) ones you have to watch.

Dance is very much to the fore, with highlights including House, a collaboration between Scottish-based dancer/performer Adura Onashile and Scottish arts group Bright Night International, as well as some hotly anticipated break-dancing from Rock-a-bye B-Boy.

Music is still well-represented with British Bengali virtuoso Soumik Datta, as well as Salim Sabri and the Mugyenko Taiko Drummers; elsewhere, Brooklyn based funkster drumming group, Red Baraat, also make an appearance. Other notable must-sees include political firecrackers and hip hop virtuosos Northern Exposures, as well as a farewell gig from mighty producer, musician and DJ Joseph Malik. As if that weren’t enough, the all-new festival begins with a special free evening show – and outdoor dance, puppetry and fireworks spectacle – courtesy of Manchester’s Walk the Plank. You should be there. We will be.

Edinburgh Mela, Leith Links, Fri 31 Aug–Sun 2 Sep.

Edinburgh Mela

World music, dance, fashion, food and fun spread over four areas: the Main Music Stage, the Mela World Dance Feste, the Mela Mix stage and the Mela Kidzone. The Mela Global Food Village is on hand to replenish your energy after taking in all the sights and sounds.

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