Meera Syal CBE


Meera Syal is an actress, author and journalist much-loved for her brilliantly funny performances in television programmes such as the iconic and multi award-winning Goodness Gracious Me (which she also co-wrote) and Emmy Award-winning The Kumars at No.42 in which she played naughty Granny, Ummi Kumar and was nominated for BAFTA for Best Comedy Performance.

Meera’s acting career has continued to flourish across stage and screen. She has been on our television screens in popular shows such as BroadchurchDoctor Who and Absolutely Fabulous, and more recently has starred in the British thriller The Devil’s Hour on Amazon Prime and hit Apple TV series, Roar. On film she has worked with an array of great directors including, Woody Allen, (twice) Terry Jones and Stephen Frears.

Her work in theatre has seen Meera perform in leading roles at The National Theatre, The Old Vic and the Royal Court to name but a few, as well as playing Beatrice in Much Ado About Nothing at the Royal Shakespeare Company in Stratford Upon Avon. She also starred as Shirley in Willy Russell’s iconic Shirley Valentine in the West End for which she won the What’s On Stage Solo Performance award.

She is also an acclaimed and popular author. Her childhood experiences growing up in a small Black Country mining community, as literally “The Only Asians In The Village”, provided the background to her first novel Anita and Me. The novel was shortlisted for the Guardian Fiction Prize and won a Betty Trask Award and Meera adapted the screenplay for the BBC film that followed. The novel is now also a recommended text on the school curriculum.

Meera is the recipient of numerous National Awards including the Women In Film and Television’s Creative Achievement Award (2008) and in 2011 she was visiting Professor of Theatre at St Catherine’s College, Oxford University. She was awarded a CBE for Services To Drama and Literature in the 2015 New Year’s Honours List. She is also a proud ambassador for Breast Cancer Care and The Alzheimer’s Society, and the long standing patron of Newham Asian Women’s project which provides refuges and advice for women and children escaping domestic violence.

Meera is a popular after-dinner speaker and awards host who can provide unique and witty insight into women’s and cultural events.

"Yesterday’s event was brilliant! I thought Meera was fantastic and thoroughly enjoyed listening to the session. The feedback so far has been amazing!"

Royal Bank of Canada and Capital Markets' World Day for Cultural Diversity

“Meera was brill! Really, really good. Funny, charming. Lovely to the client who was absolutely delighted!”

 Linklaters Diversity Event

"Meera seamlessly combined her fascinating journey with her well written sketch show style humour. The room of over 600 dinner guests thoroughly enjoyed her funny, genuine and personal performance"

Investment Property Forum's Midlands Dinner

“The feedback has been brilliant, everyone thought Meera was amazing, really insightful, engaging and funny. A lot of different diversity topics were covered so it was perfect from that aspect and enough of her own personal stories and humour to keep the balance with it being more informal.”

Pinsent Masons Inclusion Month

“Exactly the right combination of humour and professionalism” 

British Parking Awards

“Meera was fantastic and shared some great stories with us!”

 Citi Group Client Dinner