Channi Singh OBE & Bobby Friction

Taken on Southall Broadway


ZEE London Mela is delighted to be screening the London premiere of the BBC's new documentary Pump Up the Bhangra: The Sound of Asian Britain on Saturday 18 August.


This is the story of how British Asians came of age as they found their voice and celebrated their identity through Bhangra music. And of Southall’s central role in the tale.


Fronted by BBC Asian Network DJ Bobby Friction, the film recounts how a simple folk tradition from India was transformed in the 1980s to become a unique part of the British club music scene, outselling many mainstream UK acts.

It’s a story of cassette tapes, corner shops and glitter-clad musical heroes - of teenagers bunking school to attend secret daytime gigs and music that soundtracked battles against racism and discrimination.

Through a series of entertaining encounters with Bhangra legends and those they influenced, Bobby reflects on how thousands of second generation British Asians like him became comfortable with their heritage and their place in Britain through Bhangra music.

The film will be personally introduced by Bobby Friction and screened after the Sounds of Southall performance, featuring Kuljit Bhamra, Channi Singh OBE of Alaap, and Kumar and P Dhami of Heera, all of whom appear in the documentary.

Pump up the Bhangra is a documentary for BBC Four. It was commissioned by Emma Cahusac, Commissioning Editor BBC Arts and produced by Richard Bright, Executive Producer BBC Studios. This film was produced and directed by Ashok Prasad.

Never Set Eyes on the Land – A Short Film

Never Set Eyes on the Land is a short film which captures the voices of partition survivors who have made London home. The film mixes archive footage and animation and is told through a specially commissioned soundtrack.


Supported by the Heritage Lottery Fund, the film complements the live installation and is an opportunity to the share the story of partition to a younger audience. ‘Never set eyes on the Land’ brings together a multi-disciplinary team of leading artists, pre-eminent UK outdoor arts festivals, academics, specialists in participatory arts, heritage experts, archivists and educationalists, working towards a shared objective. 

Nutkhut’s Defining Moments projects aim to mark significant historical anniversaries and moments in time which reflect on the rich and complex inter-relationship between Britain and South Asian communities. Never Set yes On The Land is the second in this series following the 2016 production of Dr Blighty exploring the story of wounded WW1 Indian soldiers who convalesced in the Royal Pavilion Brighton.

Never Set Eyes On The Land takes its name from a line in W.H. Auden’s caustic poem, ‘Partition’, written 20 years after the boundary lines of the Sub-Continent were drawn up by a British civil servant.

This is the London premiere of the film.

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