Gautam Lewis: Music & Special Events Organiser, Photographer & Video Producer
Born in 1977 in Kolkata, India, Gautam Lewis has weathered and survived more
storms than most. Abandoned at three years old after contracting polio he
was taken to Mother Theresa's Missionaries of Charity where he stayed for
two years before having a further two years of operations at the
Rehabilitation Centre for Children (RCFC) just outside the city. There he
met Dr Patricia Lewis, a dual national (UK/Ireland) nuclear physicist, who
was working at RCFC for a year.
Business Studies at the Southampton Institute was followed by the opening of
Level One, a fashionable night club in Southampton's Ocean Village. During
this period Gautam became heavily involved in the music side of the
business, a factor that would influence his subsequent work in the music
industry. On returning to London at the age of 21, the next few years saw
Gautam with a record in one hand and a camera in the other; spinning tunes
at London clubs while continuing his love of photography.
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In 2001 Gautam joined the quirky and vibrant Ricochet (artist management) to
look after artists that included Keith Flint (Prodigy) and Incognito. This
evolved into a three year period at Creation Management, another young
company set-up by Stephen King and the iconic Alan McGee (the driving force
behind Oasis). Creation became highly successful and the hands on the team
were able to experience the roller-coaster 'bona fide' rock-and-roll
lifestyle. Gautam undertook the full management of bands including The
Libertines, The Hives, D4 and The Kills. As well as sorting out tours,
recordings and contracts, extra-curricular activities such as the attempted
drug rehabilitation of the Libertine's front man Pete Doherty also came with
Gautam founded Freedom in the Air (FITA) in October 2007 after qualifying as
a pilot. FITA is a not-for-profit organisation that teaches other people
with disabilities to become pilots. It is a privilege for him to be able to
introduce a disabled person to the freedom of flight and the boundless
possibilities it offers up.
After learning about the commitment of the Global Polio Eradication
Initiative (GPEI), a partnership of UNICEF, the World Health Organization,
Rotary International and the U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention
- Gautam was inspired to help the campaign to eradicate the disease in India
and worldwide forever. As brand Ambassador, Gautam has been working in India
to help eradicate polio.
Passport from Polio - Rageh Omaar - Witness from
Gautam Lewis on Vimeo
Gautam has a deep understanding of how important voluntary organizations are
in the world today.
During 2008 and 2009, Gautam paid homage to his past by holding "Full
Circle". An exhibition of thought provoking photographs that marked GPEI
final stand against polio that attracted widespread attention at the Menier
Chocolate Factory in London and The Mitchell Library, Glasgow, Scotland. The
exhibition completed the tour in December 2009 with a high profile show at
Gaganendra Shilpa Pradarshasal, Kolkata. Gautam filmed a TV documentary
during his visit to India for 'Witness', a current affairs series with
leading journalist Rageh Omar for Al Jazeera English.
Following the exhibition in London, Gautam received 'Asian Who's Who'
Leadership in Charity Award 2008.
Gautam has had great opportunities in his life. He believes that his calling
is to help others less fortunate and celebrate in the spirit that the Sky's