Multicultural Times’ Katherine Tomaylla talks briefly to Mariano Tonelli and Marcelo Eichelberge (from Sudaka), and Marcos Augusto Rivero (from The Latin Club), who are joining hands to launch Latin Power next year. What’s that? Read on.
The biennial Viva Eclectika Intercultural Music and Dance performance is presented by New Zealand Asia Association (NZAA) Incorporated. With the Late Right Reverend Sir Paul Reeves as its Patron, the association has been presenting the event for over 10 years now. In recognition of NZAA’s outstanding contribution to diversity in Aotearoa New Zealand, it was presented by the New Zealand Diversity Action Award in 2014, by the then Governor General Sir Jerry Mateparae. This year the event was held on July 28, in Auckland.
The 350-odd audience who attended the Midwinter Talent Show organised by the Christchurch-based Indian Social and Cultural Club on August 4, were treated to some amazing performances, including 18 different song and dance sequences. Whether it was a song by a five year young performer, or one of the energetic group dance performances, or a classical dance - the audience were thoroughly entertained, and kept engaged throughout the show.
Attended by over a hundred people, and performed by dancers of various skill-levels and ages – led by their teacher Anuradha Ambalavanar, the Bharatanatyam Group of Christchurch showcased its eighth annual dance recital in Christchurch on April 8. Ambalavanar, originally from Sri Lanka, who started the school 12 years back, has trained under Vivek Kinra, Artistic Director of New Zealand Academy of Bharatanatyam and Mudra Dance Company, Wellington.
The 300-member Canterbury Nepalese Society (CNS), which was established in 2015, organised the Hindu New Year 2074 in Christchurch on April 14. Bishnu Pokhrel, President of CNS shared how the event showcased the Nepalese culture to the wider community. Surinder Tandon, President of Christchurch Multicultural Council was the chief guest. The highlight of the day was a Nepalese fashion show with men and women flaunting traditional Nepalese dresses, followed by traditional Nepalese dances and other cultural performances. The event ended with mouth-watering Nepalese cuisine.
“It was traditional with a contemporary twist”. That’s how Swaroopa Unni – an Indian classical dancer originally from Kerala [South India] who has been running the only Indian classical dance school in Otago called Natyaloka – described the weekend showcase of Kathak as part of Dunedin Fringe Festival. Called Rang – Colours, the Indian classical dance rendition was performed by Unni, in collaboration with her teachers and internationally acclaimed artists Nirupama and Rajendra who run the Abhinava Dance Company in Bengaluru. Rohini Prabhath, one of their students, also participated in the performance held on March 18 and 19.
Following from the success of last year’s first-ever dance musical in the South Island, the city-based dance school Bollywood Dreams – a brain-child of 23-year-old dancing sensation and masters student at the University of Canterbury Mr Shawn Thomas - will be presenting its annual performance on two days - April 28 and 29, this year.
The event had some fantastic latino music, food, arts and crafts; and the vibrancy of colourful hispanic culture. There were latino dance workshops by Latinzone, music being played by DJ Reuben, as well as a bar serving fantastic Latino cocktails.
Not many know him in India. Reason being he left the country in his early thirties and made New York his permanent home. But Sri Chinmoy's influence can be gauged by the fact that in 1970, at the request of U Thant, the third Secretary-General of the United Nations, he founded a “non-denominational programme at the United Nations in New York which offers meditations for world harmony, interfaith programmes and cultural activities for UN delegates, staff members and special guests”. The programme runs till date. Among his other talents, Sri Chinmoy was a prolific music composer, with his compositions crossing the 22,000 mark. In total, he organised over 770 musical concerts worldwide to promote peace and harmony among the human race.
Recently, the local community of Amberley, led by the local community connector Lee Lawrence, got together to organise a community expo. There were 60 stalls of local and wider North Canterbury groups and organisations. Over 300 people visited to pick up information, find out more and enjoy afternoon tea and entertainment by local school groups. Vineyard workers from Vanu'atu finished the event on a high with their lively string band, which was a big help to the organisers for energising the final clean up and putting big smiles on everyone's faces. The guys are now back in Vanu'atu until next season but their contribution was much appreciated.
Musica Balkanica choir - formed in Christchurch in 2004 by a group of enthusiasts to celebrate and share the rich musical heritage of the Balkan region of Eastern Europe - had a concert in the Great Hall of the Arts Centre on the October 22. The choir was led by its conductor of many years, Budimir Miljkovic and co-conductor Mihaela Hnat.
Dancing to Bollywood songs - from past and present, and acting out melodramatic scenes, the musical – My Big Fat Indian Wedding - a student led and directed musical rocked the South of New Zealand recently. An initiative of the Indian Students Association (ISA) of the University of Otago, which is celebrating its tenth anniversary this year, the event featured over 135 performers – the largest ever.
In August 2015, my boyfriend and I attended the annual Takumi concert at the Aurora Centre at Burnside High. I had lived in Japan when I was younger and had belonged to a taiko club in my town so I knew a little about taiko.