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Meera Syal Becomes a Patron of HOME in Manchester

Published by: Cameron Lowe on 14th Aug 2014 | View all blogs by Cameron Lowe

Comedian, actress and writer Meera Syal MBE is today, 13 August 2014, announced as a Patron of HOME, the new centre for contemporary visualart, theatre and film which opens in Manchester in spring 2015.

Meera Syal Meera Syal, who studied English and Drama at Manchester University, joins fellow patrons, Danny Boyle, Phil Collins, Nicholas Hytner, Asif Kapadia, Jackie Kay, Rosa Barba and Suranne Jones, in supporting Manchester’s dynamic new cultural hub.

Syal has worked extensively across theatre, film, TV and radio throughout her career and is an award-winning author, playwright and screenwriter. She both wrote the screenplay and acted in the BBC Film adaptation of her first novel Anita and Me, which now features on both GCSE and university syllabuses. Her stage credits include the RSC’s Much Ado About Nothingset in modern-day India and the Bollywood-themed musical Bombay Dreams. In 2011, she was appointed the Cameron Mackintosh Visiting Professor of Contemporary Theatre at the University of Oxford.

Syal is perhaps best known for her roles in BBC comedy series Goodness Gracious Me (which she also co-created) and the International Emmy Award-winning The Kumars at Number 42. The two shows have been instrumental in establishing British-Asian comedy’s place on our TV screens. Further acting credits include The Real McCoy, Band of Gold and You Will Meet a Tall Dark Stranger.

Syal was awarded an MBE in 1997 and won Media Personality of the Year at the Commission for Racial Equality’s Race in the Media Awards (2000), as well as the EMMA (BT Ethnic and Multicultural Media Award) for Media Personality of the Year in 2001. Her contribution to the arts has been recognised within academia by an honorary doctorate from SOAS, and honorary degrees from the University of Manchester, University of London and University of Roehampton.

Meera Syal says:

‘I loved my time at Manchester as an undergraduate and am over the moon to be becoming a Patron for HOME, which will add to the city’s reputation for exciting contemporary artistic expression. It’s great to be part of a dynamic new organisation committed to discovering and fostering diverse talent and new voices across art forms.’

Jim Forrester, Chair of Trustees at HOME, comments,

‘We are thrilled to have Meera join our team of patrons for HOME. She will bring with her a wealth of experience in theatre and film and a passion for Manchester and its creativity, and a love of the arts in us all.’ 

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