Indian night still celebrated since 2008
The Indian Subcontinent Student Association hosted its annual Indian Night which included a variety of authentic activities from Q&As and instrumental performances to singing, dancing and eating.
ISSA president Jaimin Patel opened the event with a few appreciative words for all the students, staff members and faculty attending, which was followed by everyone standing up for the Indian national anthem.
Through a round of Facts about India, the audience got the chance to clear up misconceptions and to further their knowledge about the country. One of those facts revealed field hockey is the official sport of India.
While members of the audience may have had several reasons to attend, one reason was they were there for their friends.
Chi Alpha campus ministry staff member Jake Rankin said he came to support his international friends and hang out.
Senior Alyssa Southard and general studies major junior Melanie Stollhans said they came to watch their Ignite campus ministry friends perform on stage.
Southeast academic advisor José Miño Lara, known for his performances at cultural events, played a few songs on his acoustic guitar while singing. One of the songs, “Within me Without You” by Beatles member George Harrison, was a first of his to be performed on stage.
“He [George Harrison] composed that song after encountering Indian music with Ravi Shankar,” Lara said. “He’s a famous musician from India and a guitar player.”
Lara also played one of his own songs named “aqui,” the Spanish word for “here”. He said he wanted to finish off with a taste of his music instead of sticking to performing other people’s songs.
ISSA member and global studies/Spanish double major senior Mannat Varshney said she noticed changes in the culinary choices at the event.
“There has been a significant change in the cuisine for sure,” she said. “Usually, we have very typical Indian dishes. But this time we decided to give a taste of all over India.”
Some of the dishes served included chicken curry, Tikka Masala, Gobi Manchurian, and Biryani rice, along with India’s official drink, Lassi, which Varshney said people often confuse with Chai, which is British.
Patel added on her remark concerning the students involvement in the performances.
“Last time, we just had a small performance,” he said. “It was two or three minutes, but this time they performed for like 10 minutes. There were 14 of them compared to the four or five of last year.”
The night concluded with almost everyone at the dance floor, jamming to Indian tunes.