Upcoming On Campus Performance
Every year on New Moon Day either in September, October, or November, depending on how the lunar calendar falls, there is a very auspicious Indian holiday that takes place. Many of you may have heard it described as the Festival of Lights, but the more formal name is Diwali. While Diwali has a religious background that welcomes back the form of God that is portrayed as the true model of perfection and is the turning point of the seasons once the monsoon ends, it also has a more philosophical meaning. The candles lit on Diwali signify the removal of darkness and ignorance and in return the gathering of light and knowledge. The lamps that are lit symbolize the physical and spiritual aspects of light as we gather as a society and work towards the removal of darkness within us. On this holiday, families get together and give each other presents, wear new clothes, and make delicious food, which is basically the equivalent of Christmas in most other parts of the world. During this time of year many festivities take place that involve spending quality time with the family and while college students cannot go home this year for Diwali since it falls on November 11th which is a Wednesday, Penn State is making up for it in a different way.
The student organization, SASA, which stands for South Asian Student Association, is hosting a Diwali show here on campus at Alumni Hall at the HUB, where all of South Asian dance teams will be performing. The dance team I am a part of, Penn State Natya, which is the Indian classical team, will be performing along with Jadhoom, the fusion team, De Sher, the bhangra team, Ghaamudyaz, the raas team, and Penn State Fanaa, the Indian acapella group. All of the dance styles that are being performed originate from different parts of India and during this holiday we all come together and celebrate as one. We unite not just through our passion for dance and Indian culture, but also through this festive holiday through which we work towards the betterment of ourselves for the year to come. The largest South Asian organization on campus hosts an event such as this one every year and luckily this year the Diwali show falls on the actual date of the holiday, so that we can all celebrate together as a different kind of family. All of these dance teams will be performing their pieces to celebrate a new beginning, as the day after Diwali is the Gujrati New Year. Thus, as this holiday passes many Indians will be working towards their New Year resolutions around the world.
The dance teams and the acapella group will be putting on a show from 9:30 to 11 and in between there will be festivities taking place such as the lighting of fireworks and candles. Setting off fireworks is a huge part of the celebration so hopefully in order to continue the tradition SASA will be providing us with fireworks at Penn State as well. Ultimately, this will be one of the major on campus performances done by all the South Asian dance teams so I highly recommend that you check it out as I definitely think it will be a fun time. Hope to see you all there!