Supporting South Asian Artists

The National Theatre of Scotland has announced they will fund a short film opportunity for South Asian Artists.

An open call has been announced for a new short film by South Asian artists. The National Theatre of Scotland, which has a strong commitment to diversifying its pool of artists in Scotland, will back the initiative. Specifically supporting those artists based in Scotland, the film will have Uzma Mir as executive producer. The panel who will review the applications has a few familiar names. These include screenwriter and director Raisah Ahmed, and writer and actor Sanjeev Kohli.

The Team

Firstly, with 30 years of work in the industry as a radio, television director and producer, Uzma Mir has the experience to executive produce the project. Uzma says ‘I’m really excited to be part of the National Theatre for Scotland’s fantastic initiative to hear from creatives of South Asian heritage in Scotland. I know there are hundreds of stories from the community that need to be told, and this is a unique opportunity for them to be realised and amplified in a nurturing and supportive environment, and showcased to a wider audience.’

Also on board is presenter, writer and Westender, Sanjeev Kohli. Sanjeev has worked on some of the most iconic Scottish TV of the past 20 years. Still Game, Chewing the Fat, River City, Sanjeev has written and portrayed a whole host of characters over the years. Regarding the commission, he says ‘New stories are important. If we want new stories, we need new perspectives. Voices that haven’t been heard before. There’s a whole generation of unheard voices with their own compelling & unique flavours. I want to hear them.’

Uzma Mir, Raisah Ahmed and Sanjeev Kohli
NTS commitment to Diversifying

The National Theatre of Scotland’s commission is part of their expanding programme of digital work. The funding for three years is from the John Ellerman Foundation to aid the expansion. Following their commitment to diversifying creative talent in digital media and theatre, 2023 saw a previous opportunity for South Asian artists. Last year, South Asian theatre creatives had the opportunity to develop larger work for audiences in Scotland. The NTS are now working on these works. The hope is that cross collaboration between stage and screen will support more sustainable careers in the industry.

Diversifying creative talent is something director Raisah Ahmed feels is long overdue. She says ‘The South Asian community has been a part of the fabric of Scotland for decades, but the representation on our stage and screen would have you believe that they don’t exist. Any work that can be done to address the lack of opportunity for South Asian talent and experience within our arts is urgent and vital. I’m pleased to be working with National Theatre of Scotland  on this specific call out to support new talent that need those first steps in, and by commissioning work.’

Want to Apply?

Feel you have a story to tell? Applications are welcome from individual lead artists, duos, groups, or artist-led organisations. Or from artists early in their career who have had at least one piece of work produced. This could be a live performance, music video, or a self-funded short film. Your ideas should be from your own stories: stories from your community, from experiences, from your imagination! The application deadline is 9 am on Monday 29th April 2024.

For full details and how to apply click HERE.

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