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British-Indian musician alleges racism at Glastonbury Festival

Last Updated: Sunday, June 23, 2013 - 18:15

London: Award-winning British-Indian musician Nitin Sawhney has sparked a race row at one of the UK`s most famous music festivals.

The London-based performer and composer claims he has been relegated to a minor stage at the Glastonbury Festival for years because of his race.

"There can be a segregation in the way Asian artists are perceived. I was on the jazz and world stage at Glastonbury for about 10 years. I sold just as much [albums], if not more, than the acts called `mainstream`. Because I was Asian I was put on a stage that wasn`t the same," said Sawhney, who has collaborated with well-known artistes like ex-Beatle Paul McCartney and is also known for providing the score for films such as Midnight`s Children and The Namesake.

However, the organisers of the annual Glastonbury Festival of Contemporary Performing Arts, held in Somerset, England, rejected his claim regarding discrimination.
"We have a very open booking policy. This year we have got 2,000 acts performing across 58 stages," a spokesperson told the `Sunday Times`.

Sawnhey`s music is referred to as eclectic, ranging from flamenco to electronic.

He first rose to prominence in 2000 when he was nominated for the prestigious Mercury Music Prize.

The band Arctic Monkeys will headline the festival starting next Friday, with the Rolling Stones topping the bill on Saturday.

The popular event in Britain`s music calendar sold out within hours of sales opening, despite tickets costing 205 pounds each.

First Published: Sunday, June 23, 2013 - 18:15

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