Cross-arts festival Alchemy heads to Glasgow

The Southbank Centre’s annual festival celebrates links with India and Pakistan

Cross-arts festival Alchemy heads to Glasgow

Christophe Chassol

The Southbank Centre’s annual festival, Alchemy, pitches up in Scotland to celebrate links between the UK, India and Pakistan.

Running from May 21—24, Alchemy is a mix of music, dance and spoken word linking the UK with friends in southern Asia. With appearances from jazz musicians, world musicians, poets and indie stars, we’ve taken a look at some of the events that stand out.

City to City Poetry
Jim Carruth, Glasgow’s poet laureate, and Kathrine Sowerby are two Glaswegian poets who have spent time in the city’s Pakistani twin, Lahore, exchanging words and ideas with local poets there. Now, along with four Pakistani poets and four Scottish poets, they lead a poetry and music event to continue the growing understanding of differing cultures.

French pianist Christophe Chassol performs an adaptation of his critically acclaimed album Indiamore, a stunning piece of work that began in his travels in India where he recorded street musicians and used that as a foundation for his own compositions. Also on the bill are a selection of cutting edge Indian acts, put together by online music guide Wild City.

Nrityagram: Samyoga
Dance group Nrityagram’s choreographers, Surupa Sen and Bijayini Satpathy, have created a new piece of work called Samyoga, looking at ancient rituals, traditional wisdom and divine transformation as women becomes goddess in an electrifying performance.

Yorkston / Thorne / Khan
A collaboration between Fife’s folky James Yorkston, award-winning Calcuttan sarangi player Suhail Yusuf Khan and Lamb’s Jon Thorne. After a chance meeting, the trio began blending their very different sounds into an exciting blend of jazz, world music and traditional Scottish sounds.

Alchemy runs from May 21–May 24 throughout Glasgow.


Cross-arts festival Alchemy makes its way from the Southbank in London to Glasgow, for the first time to celebrate the links between the UK, India and Pakistan.


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