Jio MAMI Film Festival with Star will hold its opening ceremony on October 20 at the newly restored Royal Opera House here. The day also celebrates the re-opening of the iconic venue.
The royal family of Gondal – the owners of the venue – have worked towards ensuring the complete restoration of this centre under the watchful eye of conservation architect Abha Narain Lambah.
The Maharaja of Gondal VikramSinhji bought the Opera House in 1952. His son JyotendraSinhji Jadeja commissioned its restoration in 2009, which is now nearing completion.
JyotendraSinhji Jadeja said in a statement: “It gives me immense pleasure to see the Royal Opera House being revived back to its original glory. The Gondal family has always been a great patron of art, culture and education.
“The Royal Opera House in this new avatar is our gift to the city of Mumbai. We are delighted to partner with MAMI festival and wish them all the luck.”
In its new avatar, the 574-seater will include state of the art acoustics – with valuable inputs and support from HARMAN International (India) and stage craft, lighting and air conditioning.
Jio MAMI with Star Festival Chairperson Kiran Rao said: “We are honoured to have our opening ceremony at the Royal Opera House. We could not have asked for a better host- a host with a legacy that goes back over a hundred years.
“The Opera House is an iconic venue and as we get ready to roll out the red carpet, we hope to help revive its legacy as an important cultural venue for the people of Mumbai.”
Anupama Chopra, the film gala’s festival director, is excited to be associated with the historical re-opening.
The festival is organised by Mumbai Academy of Moving Image.