Ballantyne Magazine

SPRING 2016

Ballantyne Magazine covers news, events, real estate, restaurants, shopping, health, schools and business in the upscale Ballantyne Area of Charlotte, NC.

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HIT COMIC DOCUMENTARY Has Ballantyne Tie In 1972, Ballantyne residents Vassant and Champa Patel were introduced by their parents on an arranged date in India, wed fve days later and have been happy ever since. So when their son, Ravi, was still single at 30, they determined to fnd him a match through Patel relatives in India, never realizing the experience would turn into a comic documentary. "It's a hilarious flm, but at same time emotional and a real story," says Vassant, explaining that Ravi and their daughter, Geeta Patel, both work in Hollywood. After Geeta flmed the matchmaking trip to India, the project morphed from a PBS show into a documentary that includes snippets from Vassant and Champa's wedding, as well the parents discussing their matrimonial plan for Ravi in their Ballantyne kitchen. Since premiering last fall, "Meet the Patels" has played at 10 flm festivals and theaters nationwide and debuts this winter in London and on iTunes (see the trailer at www.meetthepatelsflm.com). The success of the documentary prompted Fox Searchlight Films to engage Geeta to write and direct the story as a major motion picture. "There's the possibility of Ravi and us starring in it again," Vassant says, clearly delighted the love story has become a surprise hit. on a white horse, with the mandap staged on the hotel lawn. "To make it more fusion, I chose a palette of blush pink, gold, marsala and ivory draping, giving it a softer and more romantic look," Neesha says. The couple had bridesmaids and groomsmen, and Neesha's father walked her down the aisle instead of her maternal uncle, as is Indian custom. A shorter Hindu ceremony was followed by a non-denominational Christian rite. Dancing to The Temptations In another fusion twist, Neesha wore a sari to the nuptials but switched into a white wedding gown — and Niclo into a tux — for the reception. "My dad and I performed the father-daughter dance to a Temptations song, then broke into a traditional Indian dance," she says. "The best part of the wedding was watching our friends and family so happy and excited the way they embraced the cultures." The Patel wedding entourage lodged at three hotels in Ballantyne Corporate Park. "I was born in the United Kingdom and have family in India and the United States, so it was a destination wedding," Shilpa says. "My brother's family and aunt and uncle's roots in the Ballantyne Indian community played a key role." Since Shilpa was raised in America, she desired fusion elements. Roshan and Shilpa Patel's wedding brought "our old world traditions into our modern generation," Shilpa says. BALLANTYNE | feature Photo by Jasmin Hejazi Photography 58 BALLANTYNE MAGAZINE SPRING 2016

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