Indian Student Association hosts cultural event

The Daily News

Indian Student Association - Traditional Indian dancers perform during the Indian Student Association’s Rang De Basanti festival Sunday. The show featured a Bollywood performance, singers, belly dancers and Chinese fan dancers. DN PHOTO BOBBY ELLIS
Indian Student Association - Traditional Indian dancers perform during the Indian Student Association’s Rang De Basanti festival Sunday. The show featured a Bollywood performance, singers, belly dancers and Chinese fan dancers. DN PHOTO BOBBY ELLIS





The Indian Student Association brought Holi, the Festival of Colors, to Pruis Hall with a Bollywood style musical, other performances and Indian food Sunday.

“Staying away from home during these kind of festivals, its really hard for us,” Aparna Satheesan, president of ISA, said. “We are trying to do as much as we can so that the others will [know] about our culture and we will be having fun all together.”

The masters student in computer science said Holi is traditionally an annual event that celebrates the beginning of spring. 

“[Holi is a] time when family and friends gather together and share sweets and play with colors,” Satheesan said. 

Although the colored powder is usually thrown around, Satheesan said Pruis did not allow that. Instead, the colors were painted on foreheads and cheeks, and the main event was a Bollywood musical. 

Satheesan said for the past four or five months the club has been preparing the event, including the 30-minute musical, “A Bollywood Love Musical,” which followed a traditional Bollywood love story. 

In eight dance numbers, members of the club followed a couple from when a boy first meets a girl to when they get married, and all of the fighting in between.

“We wanted to perform something which [represents] our country, and Bollywood dancing is one of the most famous things to come out India,” said Harsha Boppana, a graduate student in computer science and ISA Web master. “We wanted to show Americans.”

Other performances included a traditional Indian dance, a Chinese fan dance, Indian singing and belly dancing by the Ball State Belly Dancing Club.

“We thought we should ask other associations to come so that people in the audience can see other cultures,” Satheesan said.

Indian food was available after the performance through Ball State catering, followed by free dancing time to Bollywood and Indian music. 

Satheesan said the free event was originally set to cost about $10 per ticket, but the club was lucky enough to find a lot of sponsors, including the Student Government Association, University Program Board and the Multicultural Center.

“We have a [large] crowd even though it is an Easter holiday,” Satheesan said. “We expected a lot of crowd, and its more than that.”

Boppana said the club is looking to host this event every year and hopes the attendance continues to grow. 

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