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Cultural Heritage

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Sat 20th & Sun 21st July 2024 | Wardown Park | Luton

Presenting our rich and diverse musical heritage  

South Asian music comprises a range of prominent musical genres that are unique to the 
countries in and around the Indian subcontinent. This subregion of Asia includes countries 
such as Afghanistan, Bangladesh, , India, Pakistan, and Sri Lanka, with each one possessing 
its own distinct musical traditions. South Asian styles of music reflect a diverse range of local 
customs, regional languages and historical traditions, that have shaped the musical practices 
which are still seen today through events such as ours   


Throughout history, South Asian musicians have emulated religious /  spiritual beliefs as well 
as every day folk and rural culture into their compositions, resulting in the creation of musical 
styles such as Qawwali, Ghazal,  Hindustani classical music and Folk (Bhangra, Baul, 
Potowari Sher etc  The development of forms of mass media in the 1980s and 1990s 
contributed to a new type of South Asian musical culture, as the rise of cinema and television 
resulted in the popularity of genres such as Bollywood and Lollywood. As a result of social 
media and modern streaming networks, folk and ritual music styles are still widely 
appreciated today, with many modern artists taking inspiration from the classical traditions 
that defined the history of South Asian music, thus the heritage informs the contemporary 
with a rich and unbroken on going connection which has been continued by diaspora 
communities here in the UK 

At Desi Fest, audiences are presented with dynamic live performances and presentations of 
all these diverse and rich musical genres with artists such as The Khan Brothers Qawwali 
Ensemble, The AK Potowari Sher folk Group, the originators of UK Bhangra Channi Singh 
OBE of the  Alaap group and Kumar & Dhami of Heera, Dhol drummers and Baul singers 
Desi Fest is proud to keep our musical heritage alive and relevant to current audiences and as 
an inspiration to our future generations. 

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