Festival of India-Lagos audition highlights a people’s pride in their culture
Like the snail and tortoise that do not travel without hauling their shells along, particularly the snail which does so with elegance and grace, so, too, the Indians, who, though colonized like Nigeria, have managed to remain faithful to their culture as generation after generation met it. The current generation is also upholding it with pride. Much more than that, they travel everywhere with it almost as though they never left home at all.
Also, the older people ensure that the young ones are immersed in it even outside of India for its perpetuity. This is a far cry from the fetish tag most Nigerians have slammed on their different cultures, with the unfortunate result that young ones at home are alienated to the extent that they cannot even speak their respective mother tongues much more other forms of cultural expression.
However, such display of cultural affinity and faithfulness by a people far removed from home, especially by its young ones, took place last Saturday at Gaurapad Charities’ office of Festival of India committee chairman, Mr. Bolaji Rosiji, at Maryland, Lagos. It was the audition for the forthcoming Festival of India-Lagos scheduled to hold on August 13, 2016 at Tafawa Balewa Square (TBS), Lagos.
Indeed, for Nigerians who love Indian music and films, especially as being popularized by Zee World channel, Festival of India-Lagos will be the place to be for live performances of the sub-continent’s enchanting cultural displays. At the audition held to prune down the number of groups that had indicated interest to participate, under 10 Indian children groups were so impressive in their performances that the two Nigerian judges in the eight-man jury, Ras Kimono and Tee Mac, could not but applaud their ingenuity. Although there were adult only female and mixed groups, the children were by far the most impressive in interpreting a culture they did not grow up in having been born in a foreign country.
One lady who is responsible for immersing India’s young ones into their culture is the Artistic Director of AUM Creations, Mrs. Khushi Dhahwani, who teaches in an all-Indian school. She had three different children’s groups in the audition, and she expressed the hope that they would be selected for the show that would parade such stars as Pasuma Wonder, Davido, Sammy Okposo, Tee Mac and Ara. Indian stars like Anup Jalota, Sai Gargi and Yuvika Chaudhary will add colour to the festival.
Dhahwani’s group of youngsters included Pavan Putra, Veerangana Kigatha and Sur Keghunqroo performing all Indian classic dances.
Also, there were some Nigerians already sold to Indian ways of life who performed: Maharam Davi Dasi who performed ‘Oh Krisna he,’ Jamuna Devi Dasi with ‘Dheem Tadare’ and Devaki Dari and Damodara das with ‘The Matter.’ Others were Adhiti who performed ‘Enchanted,’ Jimmy-Jimmy and Genesis.