Vibrant colors and performances take CU through South Asian cultures

Video produced by Robert Tann.

A packed audience of students and community members were whisked away to eight South Asian countries during Sunday night’s “Colors of South Asia” event. Hosted by the University of Colorado Boulder’s South Asian Student Association (SASA), the event featured dances and songs from several CU student groups, all wearing colors pertaining to their country’s culture.

CU freshman and SASA member Anushka Thummalapenta said she was “excited” for the night and hoped the event brought awareness of the many cultures that were represented.

“We have so many people from so many different cultures around the world,” Thummalapenta said. “So I think that it’s important that we put on shows like this so that we bring awareness and other people get to learn about different cultures.”

Eight countries were represented: Afganistan, Bangladesh, Bhutan, India, Maldives, Nepal, Pakistan and Sri Lanka. Students were tasked with representing two countries through their performance, such as CU’s PatakaPella, an a cappella group whose harmonic music portrayed cultures of India and Bangladesh.

Performers also donned different colors which represented different “emotions to people living in different regional, geographic and religious divides.”

Audience members were handed pamphlets listing the different countries’ colors and respective significance. India’s saffron represents strength and courage, while white embodies peace and truth and green fertility and growth.

“Here in Boulder diversity really matters, voices need to be represented and having an event like this allows for a lot of cultural expression,” said Nishika Virmani, a senior and SASA co-president.

For Virmani, she wants students to know that SASA welcomes all students and hopes to foster a “creative community.”

The event saw dance performances from a variety of groups, such as; CU Abhinaya, a classical Indian dance team; Dream Team Bhangra; as well as a dance by CU seniors preparing to say goodbye to the university.

Duo performers also took to the stage to captivate audiences through heartfelt vocals and instrumentals.

Senior student and SASA co-president Jayna Patel said the event has been a longstanding tradition for SASA.

“It’s just a lot of fun to get everyone together and tap into that cultural side of us and really just showcase what South Asian culture is to the CU community,” Patel said.

Patel felt that the CU community had received SASA events positively. From watching performances, to eating food and dancing with other students after the show, the event continues to be “a success”.

“Events like this as well as events from any cultural group bring diversity,” Patel said. “You can come to these events and say ‘oh wow’ and appreciate something that is different from you and I think that is a really special thing.”

Colors of South Asia was put on by CU’s SASA. Apr. 7, 2019. (Mujtaba Al Hubayl/CU Independent)
The event included dancing. Apr. 7, 2019. (Mujtaba Al Hubayl/CU Independent)

Contact CU Independent Senior News Editor Robert Tann at 

Robert Tann
Robert Tann


Robert Tann is a sophomore student studying Journalism with a minor in Technology, Arts and Media. He lived abroad in London, UK for several years before coming to Colorado. His interests include national and local issues that affect CU and the campus community. When he's not reporting or writing, he enjoys hitting the slopes or hiking around chautauqua.

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