Shiraz with Anoushka Shankar: A Romance of India

BFI London Film Festival Archive Gala

Shiraz

Sitar master Anoushka Shankar celebrates the majesty of the Taj Mahal with the world premiere of her score to Shiraz alongside a screening of the film.

Shiraz tells the story behind the construction of the Taj Mahal. It’s a tale of love and undying devotion, following Shiraz, the building's designer, and his childhood sweetheart, the princess who became the Empress Mumtaz Mahal –  to whom the mausoleum was dedicated. It’s a film as remarkable and ornate as the structure itself – and Shankar’s score, performed here by an eight-piece ensemble of players on Indian and western instruments, promises to echo the magnificence of the building.

Shankar was taught by her father, the celebrated Ravi Shankar, a pivotal figure in the popularisation of the sitar, introducing the instrument to many Western ears. And like her father, she continues to open up new possibilities for this instrument, and has collaborated with musicians as diverse as MIA and Herbie Hancock.This is the world premiere of both the score and of the BFI National Archive’s restoration of the film, specially commissioned to mark the UK-India Year of Culture 2017.

UK/Ind/Ger 1928 Dir Franz Osten 105 min

A BFI London Film Festival Archive Gala presented by the Barbican

Programmed as part of BFI’s India on Film programme and The UK India Year of Culture

The BFI London Film Festival is sponsored by American Express

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