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May 26, 2017

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Indian community to host Cultural Festival

TAIPEI, Taiwan -- The culture of India is one of the oldest and most diverse in the world. The south, north, and northeast all have their own distinct cultures and almost every single state has carved out its own cultural niche.

In the spirit of this diversity and combined with the Taiwanese public's growing interest in the country's unique food, music and mythology, the members and friends of the Indian community in Taiwan will be holding an India Cultural Festival in Taipei, from September 19-26.

The event will feature an Indian bazaar, a cultural parade, a Bollywood party night, an Indian mask exhibition and a Ramayana performance, as well as lectures on Indian culture.

The Ramayana is an epic from Indian mythology - a classic tale of good triumphing over evil. The performance enacts the story in the form of a dance drama, starting with crowned Prince Rama winning the hand of Princess Sita by successfully achieving a difficult task set by her father. A jealous step-mother, however, wants her own son to be king, and has Rama banished into the jungle.

As part of the festival, the Dream Community and Jeffery Wu have also invited three performers from India. The first artist is Kalamandalam Shiju Kumar, a professional Kathakali dancer. This is Shiju's 6th visit to Taiwan; on previous visits he performed another Indian epic, the Mahabharata, as well as a Chinese story, Butterfly Lovers, both in Kathakali form.

Another performer invited to attend is Gayathri Subramaniam, who started learning dance from the tender young age of 3. Apart from being well versed in Indian folk dance, she also specializes in 4 different forms of classical Indian dance: Bharatanatyam, Mohiniyattam, Kuchippudi, and Kerelanatanam.

The third artist invited for the festival is Siju Thomas Daniel, a Commerce major in college who has been practicing Indian marital arts, Kalarippayattu, from the age of 4. Currently, he also performs and teaches contemporary dance.

These three performers will be joined by over five Taiwanese dance groups that specialize in Indian dances for the opening day of the festival at Hsichih, Taipei County. For more information on the performances throughout the festival, please log on to http://blog.roodo.com/india_portal/. ■

India Cultural Festival / From 12 p.m. September 19 (Sat.) Indian Bazaar, 2 p.m. Opening Ceremony, 7:30 p.m. Bollywood Night / Dream Community (汐止夢想社區) / No. 95 MinZu 2nd Rd., Hsichih, Taipei County (民族二街95號) / 8 p.m. September 20 (Sun.) / Ramayana Fantasy & Dance Performance / Minsheng Concert Hall (民生社區表演廳) / 4F No. 163-1 Minsheng E. Rd., Taipei City (台北市民生東路五段 163-1號4F) / NT$300 / http://www.ticket.com.tw/

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