Belfast Telegraph

Belfast's Mela serves up feast of food and music from around world

By Staff Reporter

Belfast's Mela celebrated its 10th anniversary yesterday with a feast of colour, cuisine and music.

The Indian festival featured a musical carnival festooned with flowers as it paraded through the city's Botanic Gardens.

Over the bank holiday weekend around 30,000 visitors were treated to the sights, sounds and smells of the world.

"Northern Ireland has truly taken Mela to its heart and in our 10-year history around a quarter-of-a-million people have enjoyed the unique Belfast Mela experience," said Nisha Tandon of organisers ArtsEkta.

On the big stage acts such as hit Indian singer-songwriter Raghu Dixit and the South Asian Dance Academy were joined by local folk band Connla. Children enjoyed a host of different dances, whether inspired by Bollywood's dazzling experience, Chinese lions or African drums.

A film and photo exhibition - Voices of Mela - capturing 10 years of festival moments was on display at the Ulster Museum featuring the stories of Northern Ireland's ethnic communities.

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