SAMOSA to hold annual Diwali festival

Raynor Denitzio

On Saturday, Dec. 3 the South Asian Multicultural Organized Students (SAMOSA) will host its annual Diwali festival in the Villanova room of the Connelly Center. Diwali is one of the largest cultural shows on campus, regularly attracting large crowds. Aside from the traditional dances, this year will also feature guests from Cornell University and a talk by Dr. Teresa Nance of the Center for Multicultural Affairs.

“It’s a fairly large cultural celebration that occurs throughout India,” said Amit Desai, a SAMOSA member. ” It marks the end of one year and the start of another year based on the lunar calendar.”

More commonly known as the festival of lights, SAMOSA marks Diwali with a showcase of various forms of dancing from different regions of India. An effort is made to infuse new, modern cultural ideas with older, traditional culture.

“Our particular show tends to be a fusion of old traditional Indian performances and newer modern dances, fused with current hip-hop and pop songs,” said Desai.

The show will feature four main types of dancing. The first is Bhangra, a traditional form of dance from Punjab. This dancing style is marked by its high energy and the unique style that each performer brings to the dance.

In addition, the show will feature Bharathanatyam, a classical Indian form of dance from southern India, characterized by its classical, rigid style.

Other performers will choreograph dances based on traditional Hindi film songs, and the show will also feature Raas, a high energy dance style from Gujarat, which will be performed by guests from Cornell.

SAMOSA organizers hope that students who attend the Villanova vs. Oklahoma basketball game will then stick around to take in some traditional Indian dances and culture.

The show starts at 7 p.m., with doors opening at 6:30. Tickets are available before the show for a price of $5 and at the door for $8. In addition, due to popular request from past performances, the music from the show will be available on CD after the performance for $3. Part of the proceeds will go to earthquake relief in India and Pakistan.

SAMOSA organizers hope that students will come out to support their peers and enjoy a unique experience.