Jan 12, 2018
A Season-long Voyage of Vibrancy and Colors - By Kushagra Bhatnagar, SMSF 2017 - Sawan Multicultural Spring Festival, a spectacular journey, organised by SKGA Incorporatedled by Festival Director Mr. Nawal Moudgil, embarked on 1st September for three months, gloriously culminating on 10th December. The joyful ride saw a host of musical guests, singers and dancers, a brilliant and colourful reflection of spiritual, Bollywood and multicultural Australia.

The festivalwitnessed an estimated attendance of 20,000 people and officially culminated on10th December in City of Melbourne, Monash & other Councils. True to the spirit of Australian multiculturalism, the talented performers hailed from diverse range of backgrounds - India, Brunei Darussalam, Cambodia, Indonesia, Lao PDR, Malaysia, Myanmar, Philippines, Singapore, Thailand, Vietnam, Columbia, China, Fiji, Bangladesh, Macedonia, Greece, Nepal, Afghanistan, Pakistan, Sri Lanka, Ghana, Sudan, France, and Mauritius.

As part of the celebration, the Indian Festival of Lights – Diwali was celebrated with random synergy and breezy charm on 7th and 8th of October. On 28th & 29th October, the people of Melbourne witnessed masterful weaving of musical, dance and artistic experience in the ASEAN 50th Year Silver Jubilee in collaboration with Mr. Albert Lim in CBD’s Queen Victoria Market Melbourne 3000.

Among the musical bonanza, a message inculcating spirit of community cohesion and social soliditywas introduced by Professor Paresh Narayan and Harry Sharma by delivering a series of presentations and workshops such as Teen Transformation, Business Coaching & Wealth Management, Taxation and Accounting, Yoga - Meditation & Mental Health, Diversity in Business and Finance, Real Estate and Home Loans, 21st Century Education, Education - Migration & Immigration Consulting, Bharatanatyam: An Immersion of Body & Mind, Preserver of Linguistic Diversity - The Sanskrit, and Hindi Language & Literature in Australia

The festival flourished by the inaugural candle lighting and a team of wonderful hosts and coordinators including Ms Australasia - Ayushi Dixit, Bangladeshi TV Broadcaster - Irfat Begum, Neel Moudgil, Santhini Bharat, Roshni, Ronald Huynh, Navika Moudgil, Renu Sharma& Rachna Bhagat, hosted the event wonderfully.

In what turned out to be an unforgettable Closing day for dance and music lovers, the talented performers produced magnificent performances. Few classical dancers are as adept at creating atmosphere so rich and diverse as Ghungroo School of Kathak Dance and Pegasus Dance Company. The former presenting the great Indian classical dance and the latter Greek. The rhythm and abandon that channels in their classical dance with expressions to match was unmatchable.Grace Liu soaked her craft of singing by enthralling the audience with rendition of Chinese songs.

When Jalwa Dance Company’s Bollywood dancers took the stage, they often looked more like fluid machines with movements surging and pouring through their bodies. A vibrant dance group Lenggkok Geni presented Indonesian dance with aplomb. A host of local cross-cultural dance groups rocked the stage by producing rhythmic torrents of beats electrifying the audience.

It is not easy to maintain the energy and interests within community over three months long Sawan Spring Cultural Festival. The source of motivation and support came from Victorian Greens Member of Parliament Samantha Ratnam, Dr Mimmie Claudine Ngum Chi Watts from the Victorian Multicultural Commission, Councillor Philip Le Liu from City of Melbourne, Beyond India’s Moti Visa, Inga Pulich MP, Hong Lim MP, Michael Sukkar MP, Michael Gidley MP, Deputy Mayor Stuart James, Cr Geoff Lakes from City of Monash and Cr Heang Tak from City of Dandenong.

The defining success for Sawan Multicultural Spring Festival has been to bring the community closer, foster community engagement and promoting multiculturalism. The community stakeholders understand this and hence enthusiastically came forward to support and sponsor the festival. This support came in from Victorian Multicultural Commission, City of Monash, ASEAN Association Australia Inc, SIMDA Cultural Group,Breakthrough Education, Easy Tax Accountants, Pakart Productions, AIFAV Inc, Hindi Shiksha Sangh, Clayton Clarinda Multicultural Group, Monash Youth & Family Services, HOTA Community Group,  Harmony International Inc, Clayton Library, Brahmakumari Yoga Centre, Rockbank Durga Temple, ZZZ Hindi Radio, Beyond India Media & Magazine, The Indian Press Club, Indian Link Newspaper, Afghan Australian Philanthropic Association Inc, Vishwa Hindu Parishad, Greater India Research Institute and the Monash Women’s Family Forum.

After this success, SKGA Incorporated’s next event is SHMF 2018 - Spirit & Harmony Multicultural Festival, is two months long festival from 5th January to 4th March 2018 throughout Victoria at various locations, presenting Spiritual, Devotional, Classical, Popular Music, Dances, Dramas & Instrumentals performances, talks & workshops from Indigenous, Indian, Australian and other Cultures.For more info please visit www.skga.org.au

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