Edinburgh Diwali Live For First Time in Two Years

Submitted by edg on Sun, 21 Nov '21 8.58am
Hindu God Ganesh in Edinburgh Diwali Parade
France Sutton

The Edinburgh Diwali returns this afternoon for its first live, in-person event in two years, with a traditional parade, led by the Lord Provost, from St Andrew Square to Castle Street.

The parade is followed by a free, outdoor programme of performance at the Ross Bandstand in West Princes Street Gardens.

The multicultural Diwali Parade will be led from St Andrew Square on Sunday 21 November at 1.00pm by the Lord Provost with dancers from the Edinburgh Bhangra Crew, the Marathi Dance by Bollywood Dance Group, the Bengali Dance Group, the Garba Dance by Junoon from the University of Edinburgh and the Rajasthani Dance by Rangilo Rajasthani Group.

They will be joined by Edinburgh’s Salsa Dancers and The Scottish Regiment, Glencorse and Stockbridge pipe bands as well as the Edinburgh Noise Committee.  

The Parade culminates with music and performances on Castle Street from 2:00pm – 2.30pm, before the celebrations move to the Ross Bandstand in Princes Street Gardens for more theatre, music and dance from Dance @Studio21, Dance Ihayami, Theiya Arts and Absolutely Legless who fuse traditional Irish dance with Indian dance forms.

Indian by Nature and Prana Indian grill will be selling food.

A fireworks display at 5.30pm will provide the event's finale.

Light over darkness

The South Asian Festival of Diwali is celebrated by Hindus, Jains, Sikhs and Buddhists around the world, each religion marking different historical events and legends, however all represent the victory of light over darkness, knowledge over ignorance, good over evil and hope over despair.  

Rajnish Singh, President of the volunteer-run Scottish charity Edinburgh Diwali, said:

“Diwali is the celebration of light over darkness, good over evil, and many cultures around the world mark this as we go into the dark nights of winter.  After the last 18 months, it is even more important to celebrate Diwali and with such a wide programme of performances and entertainment from different cultures, Edinburgh Diwali is making a huge effort to bring communities together. This is truly an event for everyone – so come and celebrate with us.”

Edinburgh’s Lord Provost Frank Ross said: “I’m delighted to be welcoming Edinburgh Diwali back in person this year, and to be able to lead its vibrant procession through the city. I’m sure many more will be just as excited to see this colourful festival return to our streets and to participate and celebrate the victory of good over evil and hope over despair.

“Edinburgh Diwali is a special occasion for the Capital, when we join more than 1.5 billion people around the world to ward off darkness and welcome the light into our lives. My thanks to the President, Committee and a dedicated team of volunteers who have worked extremely hard to bring this event back this year. Please have a great Diwali and check out the fantastic programme of activities planned to mark its live, in-person return.”

Edinburgh Diwali 2021 is supported by The City of Edinburgh Council Local Festival & Event Fund, National Lottery Awards for All Fund and Kumon Corstorphine & Leith GKP Limited.

More info on Edinburgh Diwali