It’s hard to imagine there could be any color left on Northwestern’s campus after this week’s Snowpocalypse buried it under an insurmountable blanket of white snow. But you need look no farther than Cahn Auditorium.
This Saturday, Feb. 5, Cahn will be home to South Asian Student Alliance’s annual fundraiser. This variety show, which has sold out for the past eight years, consists of 13 acts and features the vibrant colors of traditional South Asian garb. “You will see a wide variety of costumes,” cultural chair and Weinberg sophomore Rajul Parekh says. “We have very traditional outfits that are Bollywood like, very glitzy with lots of colors and sparkles.”
Along with putting on an entertaining, visually stunning show, SASA strives to promote South Asian cultural awareness and unity. “A lot of people are unaware of what South Asian culture really is, so we hope people come to the show to figure out exactly what South Asians do and how we show our culture,” Parekh said.
This cultural demonstration consists of a combination of a cappella groups, campus bands, skits performed by the show’s two MCs and a variety of cultural dances. Each grade puts on its own dance, which its members work together to create.
There are also Northwestern’s three cultural dance teams: Filmi, Bhangra and Deeva Dance Troupe. The Filmi dance group performs Bollywood-style routines while Bhangra focuses on traditional, Punjab style dancing.
And then there’s Deeva Dance Troupe, which draws on many different inspirations for its routine. “We are a fusion group, so we do a little bit of everything. Our dances include ballet, jazz, classical Indian dance and more modern Bollywood dancing,” said Parekh, who is also a member of the group.
Parekh fills the dual role of dancer and the show’s primary organizer. She has been planning since last march, working on everything from costumes to sets. Despite the amount of time put in, Parekh says that it is worth the effort. “It’s tiring at times but it is definitely paying off in the end. Its just a rewarding experience to be up there on that stage with people who are all as passionate as you are, who just want to put on a great show,” Parekh said.
Pavan Patel has been a member of SASA for three years. He is the co-president and, like Parekh, has been instrumental in making the show a beautiful representation of South Asian culture. “The culture itself is visually stunning,” Patel said. “When you have a group of 175 students portray their culture in front of close to 1000 people its truly amazing, it is a sight to see.”
“The Show Must Go On: SASA Show 2011” will take place Saturday Feb. 5 in Cahn Auditorium. Tickets are now on sale at the Norris Box office for $12.