A new alternative festival featuring a mix of U.K. and domestic rock acts is to launch in India later this year, following the signing of a new cross cultural agreement between the British and Indian governments.
Named after the NH7 highway, which runs through the heart of India, the 2-day NH7 Weekender will make its inaugural bow in December this year. The festival will include performances from over 40 U.K. and India-based rock, alternative and dance acts, say organizers, although participating artists are yet to be announced.
U.K.-based artist manager Stephen Budd; Glastonbury festival booker Martin Elbourne; Jon Mac, who co-founded the Brighton, England-based festival The Great Escape and Vijay Nair, the managing director of India-based promoters and artist management company Only Much Louder, are among the organizers of the event, which will have a 10,000 capacity. The host city will be announced shortly.
In the run-up to the inaugural NH7 festival, 25 concerts will be staged in 11 cities throughout India. Locations and artist bills for the 25 concerts will also be announced in the coming months.
The NH7 Weekender surpasses earlier plans by Budd to launch a similar Indian rock festival -- provisionally entitled Holy Cow -- boosting a mix of U.K. and Indian artists earlier this year.
Today's announcement follows the signing of a 'cultural agreement' between Jeremy Hunt, the U.K. Secretary of State for Culture, Olympics, Media and Sport, and Jawhar Sircar, India's Secretary of the Ministry of Culture, which aims to boost cultural exchanges between the two territories.
The Memorandum of Understanding was signed yesterday (July 29) in Delhi in the presence of U.K. Prime Minister David Cameron and the Indian Prime Minister Manmohan Singh.
In a statement Hunt said: "The U.K. and India share a cultural bond that has been richly celebrated in art, literature, film and music for generations."
"This agreement will lead to a fantastic array of cultural activity over the coming years," Hunt went on to say, citing the introduction of NH7 as one of a host of "exciting projects" resulting from closer U.K. and Indian ties.