Festival of India Sept. 13th
Posted September 7, 2003
Utah Valley's KHQN Radio and Krishna Temple, located on South Main St. in Spanish Fork, will host the 17th Annual Festival of India on Saturday, September 13th from 4 pm. The new Krishna Temple provides an expanded festival site and facilities for the popular event.
After 16 increasingly successful editions of the India Fest, few people in Utah County are ignorant of the fact that, once a year, you can go to India without spending a lot of money. You can have India right in the middle, of all places, ... Spanish Fork!
Over 5,000 people attended last year's celebration, and India Fest 2003 could be the biggest one yet, thanks to the enthusiastic increase of promotional efforts on the part of the organizers, the majestic, overlooking presence of the Krishna temple at the festival site, and a natural amphitheater which can accommodate thousands.
Underneath multicolored Indian wedding tents, the eight acre festival site will feature world class entertainment, cuisine, a gift shop, art, photography, cultural exhibits on India, a gala pageant of the epic Ramayana, the burning of a 20' high ten-headed demon named Ravana, and spectacular fireworks
Delicious hot multi- course meals of Indian curry with home made cheese (paneer), blueberry hallava, spicy Bengali rice, and giant lentil chips (papadams) will be served throughout the evening. There will be Indian drinks such as Peach lassi, and Nimbu pani, as well as sweets and pizza for the less adventurous.
Everyone is invited to enjoy this unique and exotic event, which has been growing in public attendance year after year.
Admission is $3.00 person/$1.00 children.
Schedule of Stage entertainment
4:00 pm, Vishal Ailawadhi, brilliant young classical and popular Indian vocalist from Torrance, Cal. Plays harmonium and tabla accompaniment by Hemant Ekbote.
5:00 pm, Nithya Balasubramaniyam, a young student of Srimate Sudha Vasudevan from Boise Idaho, will dance two selections, one of which is: The song Alaypayuthe describes the yearnings of Radha waiting for Krishna's arrival. She is enchanted by Krishna's charm and the melody of his music. In his absence she complains that even the soft moonlight is burning her body. She is asking him that when she is missing him so much, is it fair on his part to ignore her and spend time with other Gopikas (devotees).
5:15 pm, Northern California's Lasya Dance Company, headed by Vidya Subramaniam, is sending two of their top performers, Chetana Sastry & Priya Das.
Several of their selections are as follows (Bharata Natyam Dance style):
Mallari: Mallari is a composition emphasizing the intricate interplay of rhythmic beats and footwork. It draws inspiration from the music played in Hindu temples while the deity is taken out of the sanctum sanctorum and into a procession through the city.
Jaya Janaki Ramana: This piece is Song in praise of Lord Rama, husband of Janaki and one of the avatars (manifestations) of Lord Vishnu. The highlight of the piece is that it is set to Raga Malika (5 different sets of musical notes) and Taala Malika (in 5 different rhythms)
Brindavanadolu Aaduvan Yare: "Who plays the flute so melodiously in Brindavan?" This composition talks about how all the gopis (cow-herdesses) in the city of Brindavan are entranced by the sounds of a melodious flute. They cannot complete their chores and come out of their homes to look for who is playing the flute, to discover that it is Lord Krishna.
6:15 pm, Drama, The Transformation of Vamiki, who went from robber to saint, and is famous as the narrator of the epic Ramayana.
6:30 pm, Nandini Mehta and Satya Raju, both grade A performing artists from Bangalore, India will collaborate with Asha Gopal (Phoenix) and her student Sutopa Barua, in the following selections and more (dance styles are both Kathak & Bharat Natyam):
- Krishna Padam-Raga Jayanthashri and Talamalika
This item describes Lord Krishna playing with the Gopis (devotees).
- Madhurashtakam-Raag Misra Pilu,Teen Taal
These stanzas have been taken from Shankaracharya's Madhurashtakam verses which describe the beauty and grandeur of Lord Krishna.
- Tumri(song)-Hari Main To Hari. This Tumri describes Lord Krishna teasing Radha the Gopis in Brindavan . Krishna breaks their pots and harasses them all the time. In the end Radha realizes that it is Lord Krishna himself and surrenders herself to her Lord.
- Tillana-This item is performed at the end of the repertoire . It has lot of fast, intricate foot-work and sculpture like poses.
7:30 pm: Main Event, Pageant of the Ramayana, climaxing in the spectacular burning of 20' high effigy of Ravana after dark with flaming arrows and fireworks.
Cast members for the Ramayana are in order of Appearance:
Keikeyi, Karuna Manna: Manthara, Divya Drsti Frazier: King Dasaratha, Dennis Morrow: Bharat, Jai Krishna Perry: Rama, Justin Hadlock: Sita, Andrea Nunez: Laksman, Jon Chavez: Surpanakha, Vishnu Priya Shibonis: Ravana, Randy Seely: Maricha and Jatayu, Sydartha Manna: Ogresses, Ganga and Yamuna Shibonis: Hanuman, Jai Krishna Perry, Monkey Soldiers, Josh Dennis, Will Covin, & Franklin Raines.