It’s all begun…

Subtle Kraft Co.
'Cravings of Intimacy & Solitude' - Image credited to Gabriela

So Alchemy is underway. Over the next ten days we will get the opportunity to experience artistry, beauty, harmony and deliciousness as South Asia comes to Royal Festival Hall.

Alchemy explores the contrasts and connections between cultures in the UK, India and South Asia. This festival at Southbank Centre got me thinking…how do I, as an individual, as Kimberley, have a connection to both of these cultures?

In my case, my connection is simultaneously ‘very close to home’ but also, strangely far away…

I am mixed race – my Mum is from the UK and my Dad is originally from India.

However, the strange situation arises when part of your heritage remains hidden from view. So, to explain a bit more… I have been born and raised in the UK, but circumstances have meant that I have only ever known my Mum’s side of the family. Therefore, I have been raised in a Caucasian family where in fact I am the only one with a dual cultural heritage.

I was only made aware of this in my late teens, but it is a factor that greatly intrigues and interests me because as I have got older I have realised that in fact there is part of my identity that I have yet to discover and ‘get to know’.

Although I can appreciate that there is a big disadvantage to not having been bought up being dually exposed to both cultures, now I am consciously making the choice to change that by educating myself and embracing the diversity within Indian culture that is part of who I am.

I’d love to have an adventure and go to India at some point, but until I raise enough funds I am going to enjoy this exploration, satisfying my senses of sight, sounds, touch, tastes and smell with all the different events by delving head first into what Alchemy Festival has to offer. Come and join me!

Find what draws you in…what catches your eye?…What inspires you to learn more?

What or who connects you to South Asia?

Have fun discovering!!

Katie Ryan and Khavita Kaur (part of Odissi Ensemble). The photography credit is Simon Richardson


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