Kalsi – who has played on the soundtrack for Hollywood films such as Gangs of New York, the Incredible Hulk and Tomorrow Never Dies and will – will take part in a spectacular Asian themed evening on Tuesday 20th April at the Wandsworth Civic Suite which will see live performances from artists such as Brit-Pakistani spoken word poet, Anjum Malik and community dancers and performers such as Young Voices. The evening is in collaboration Solace Care – formerly Asian Elderly Support Scheme. Previous festival participants of the event include, actors Saeed Jaffrey and Shabana Azmi.
Comedienne and writer Meera Syal, a patron of the festival says: “Mental Health is a difficult issue to broach and discuss in our communities, and something we often hide in the family, but through honest discussion and through other avenues such as film and music we can open up and explore these sensitive issues together.”
The Happy Soul Festival – which launched in 2007 – runs from 20th -30th April, and will provide audiences with an abundance of opportunities to view a diverse range of British, Asian, African-American, Korean, African and Israeli films which explore well-being issues within these communities.
The two-week, free festival will comprise over 20 film-screenings and events taking place in Kingston, Wimbledon, Merton, Lambeth, Sutton and Richmond.
Films being showcased during the festival include: Precious, London River which is set during the 7/7 terrorist attacks on London, Firaaq, and the Iranian drama About Elly, Chris Rock’s Good Hair and Eyes Wide Open.
Community well-being and feel-good events include belly dancing, a series of workshops on ancient mediation practices, Philippine Bamboo dance acts, massage, yoga and taster meditation and Tai Chi taster sessions.
The award-winning author Alice Walker and actor Colin Salmon are also guests at this year’s festival, and highlights include An Audience with Alice Walker event and the Happy Soul Youth Film Awards, which will see young people from schools and community groups in South London making short films which explore mental health awareness from their experience.
Cary Sawhney, the Festival’s Director says: “Happy Soul’s core aim is to create a greater awareness of mental health in the minority ethnic communities where these issues are often stigmatised, or people are unaware of the services that we can offer”.