Diwali show encourages cultural exploration

Jeffrey Eisenberg

The annual Diwali show, the South Asian Multicultural Organized Student Association’s premiere event, is set for this Saturday evening in the Villanova Room.

Held every year around the time of the Diwali holiday, the event showcases the culture of South Asia. Audiences should expect to see various dances, songs, skits, clothing and food representative of the region.

This year, organizers hope the show will follow the success of last year’s event, which attracted 650 people to Connelly Center. In addition to members of the Villanova community, attendees came from all over Philadelphia.

“The show is always one of the biggest cultural shows on campus,” said Diwali co-chair, sophomore Sunit Vekaria. “Members of SAMOSA put their hearts into this show, starting to practice as early as September for the dances.”

Planning for the event began in April, when Vekaria and co-chair Tia Choudhury started looking forward to this major celebration.

“There are about 70 to 80 people involved in some way with this show,” he said. “It just shows how big this event is in Villanova’s community.”

Members of SAMOSA hope that each Diwali show is a unique and culturally enriching experience. The performances promise elements that will appeal to a wide audience.

“Each year there is something that outdoes the year before, leaving our audience always excited for next year’s show,” Vekaria said.

Some of the biggest attractions to the show, the dances, represent the unique styles of the culture.

“A big portion of the show’s dancing is a fusion between traditional dancing and hip-hop, as well as other modern dancing,” Vekaria said. “A lot of dances showcase moves one would see in a typical Bollywood movie.”

With Villanova’s commitment to increased cultural awareness, the Diwali show will be a perfect opportunity to explore one of the many different cultures represented on campus.

“Students should come to the Diwali show because it is one of their few chances to actually experience another culture, rather than just simply learning about it,” Vekaria said.

Tickets are on sale this week in Dougherty Hall and Connelly Center. They are $5 in advance and $8 at the door. Doors open at 6 p.m. on Saturday, and the show starts at 7 p.m.