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The Magic of India

Monday 24 March 2014

1 Hour


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£11 - £25

Ticket price

Actress and world authority on Indian food Madhur Jaffrey and former BBC New Delhi bureau chief Sir Mark Tully bring to life the magic of the India they know so well.  Jaffrey and Tully evoke the sounds, smells and moods of India from the time of their upbringings during the last days of the Raj to the present day. And they look at the good and the bad of India, and at what the future holds for the world’s biggest democracy and one of its fastest-growing economies.

Jaffrey was born in Delhi and won a scholarship to the Royal Academy of Dramatic Art in London following a performance in Tennessee William’s Auto-da-Fe. From there her career took off. She appeared in various BBC TV and radio plays and enjoyed a spell in New York before her big success in Shakespeare Wallah.  She went on to star in further Merchant Ivory films and to win accolades for theatre performances on Broadway and in the West End, and continues to appear in movies and TV films today. She has also carved out a second career as a cookery writer and broadcaster and is regarded as a world authority on Indian food. She has published many cookery books and a memoir Climbing the Mango Trees: A Memoir of a Childhood in India. A special dinner at University College on Wednesday, March 26, will mark Jaffrey’s 80th birthday.

Tully was born in India and spent the first decade of his life there. He later went to England for schooling and moved back to India in 1965 as BBC India correspondent. He resigned from the BBC in 1994 after an argument with the then director general, John Birt, over the running of the corporation. Since then he has worked as a freelance journalist and broadcaster based in New Delhi. He has published several books on India including India’s Unending Journey and India: The Road Ahead. He is currently a presenter on BBC Radio 4’s Something Understood, a programme that examines some of the larger questions of life, taking a spiritual theme and exploring it through music, prose and poetry.