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India Currents gave me a voice in days I was very lost. Having my articles selected for publishing was very validating – Shailaja Dixit, Executive Director, Narika, Fremont
The San Jose Sharks hosted a day of cultural events in partnership with INDTVUSA as part of their annual Celebration of South Asian Culture at SAP Center where the Sharks hosted the Minnesota Wild on March 11 in San Jose.
A first for the Sharks was hosting a Holi celebration co-presented by the non-profit Uttar Pradesh Mandal Of America (UPMA). Hundreds of people turned up to be saturated with colored powder in celebration of the festival of color, love and spring. The crowd went wild when dancing to the Oscar nominated song, “Naatu Naatu”, the classic “Rang Barse” from the movie Silsila, and other top hits.
The celebration continued in the evening with musical performances by Voice of Bay Area, founded by Jagruti Shah, at the Hop Valley Bar. A Q&A session between INDTVUSA CEO Charanbir Mahal and Indian actress Huma Qureshi, the first Indian actress to drop a ceremonial puck for an NHL game, was followed by a meet and greet and photos with the actress.
Local singer Saavi Ramteke performed the national anthem, following the footsteps of Soukhya Inamdar, the first Indian woman to sing the national anthem at an NHL game.
Also seen on overhead screens between replays and score updates was an updated South Asian themed Shark’s logo by artist Chetna Mehta.
As described by Mehta: “The design incorporates a Mendhi mandala, as the practice of henna overlaps across all South Asian countries and cultures despite the rich diversity. The art also plays with contrasting motifs that are both feminine and masculine, creating variance between the fierce, drooling shark in front of graceful circles and swirls. The orange disc behind the mandala symbolizes solar and lunar cycles, which often determine the timing of annual celebrations and ceremonies. The turmeric diamond, a color of a significant spice in food and ritual, offers a vibrant background for the detail of the earthy red mandala to be seen. The sprightly colors of the design are pervasive in cultural festivals and attire, reflecting tones of nature itself.”
During game intermissions dance performances by Gurus of Dance, founded by Aditya Patel, were featured. Also available along the main concourse was information on The Art of Living and SKY Schools, who partnered with the Sharks Foundation to bring yoga to youth at Lyndale Elementary School.
Indians new and old to the game enjoyed the night of South Asian culture and hockey. Tanvi Joshi and husband Anirudh Joshi, season ticket holders, were in attendance with their extended family, “Hockey is in the Indian blood,” said Mr. Joshi. “It is the national sport of India!”