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City Park's live Bollywood spectacular makes top TV list with award nomination
The spectacular Bollywood Carmen show, performed in Bradford’s City Park last summer, is up against coverage of Andy Murray’s Wimbledon win and The Ashes for a Royal Television Society Award.
The glittering take on Bizet’s Carmen, broadcast live on BBC3, was performed to a packed audience in City Park and Centenary Square. Starring Meera Syal, former EastEnders actress Preeya Kalidas, Bollywood star Abhay Deol, Waterloo Road actress Chelsee Healey and Bradford actress Rachel Leskovac, the ambitious production was the latest of the BBC’s outdoor shows, following The Manchester Passion and Frankenstein's Wedding, staged at Kirkstall Abbey, Leeds.
The ‘Bollywood opera’ involved many Bradford people, on and off stage. A hundred local dancers took part, and students from the University of Bradford and Bradford College worked with the technical crew and make-up team.
Twin brothers Akeel and Jameel Amini, owners of Ranis Bradford boutique, dressed cast members, and local henna artist Amnah Mahmood did the show's body art.
Bradford’s City of Film team worked with the BBC on finding locations, rehearsal facilities, dancers, crew and hotel accommodation.
Bollywood Carmen Live is shortlisted in the Royal Television Society Programme Awards for the Live Event prize, against the BBC’s coverage of Andy Murray’s historic win in the Wimbledon men's final and Sky Sports' The Ashes.
Also nominated for awards are Peaky Blinders and Utopia, both filmed in Bradford. They are both up for Best Drama Series, and Utopia writer Dennis Kelly is up for Best Drama Writer. The RTS Programme Awards take place in London on March 18.
City of Film director David Wilson said: “We are delighted that Bollywood Carmen Live has been nominated. It was one of the first large-scale events to be held in Bradford’s City Park, and through City of Film brought together many different organisations.
“As well as promoting Bradford’s film heritage and fantastic City Park on prime time television, Bollywood Carmen Live really proved to the BBC that Bradford was ready for the challenge to accommodate such a huge live production.”
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