— By Aiyushman Dutta
Shillong Chamber Choir performs at FASS goodwill concert in USA
The Friends of Assam and Seven Sisters (FASS) International (USA) co-sponsored a goodwill concert of the Shillong Chamber Choir in Silver Spring, Maryland, USA on July 20, 2012. Talking about the concert, FASS General Secretary Hitesh Kalita said, “The Shillong singers’ unique repertoire consists of classical and secular, sacred and pop music; and the performance was a great success being attended by around 250 people including about 50 local Assamese.
The concert was inaugurated by Indian Ambassador to USA Mrs. Nirupama Rao and attended by India American Leadership Council. The concert was hosted by Michael Rathnam, Shan Fanwar , Dr.Kamala Edwards & Vijay Pandit.
The internationally acclaimed Shillong Chamber Choir team consisting of 18 members was on a visit to the USA, and has made their command performance at the finale of the 7th World Choir Games 2012 in Cincinnati on July 14th. The visiting SCC group was headed by its director Mr. Ike Sinha and the founder Mr.Neil Nongkynrih. Friends of Assam Seven Sisters (FASS) also worked with Embassy of India and many other key business peoples from NE in the USA, to host few other performances in the Nation’s capital, Washington D.C.
With several first’s to their credit—winning the 2010 India’s Got Talent Competition, and triple Gold Medals at the Shanghai World Choir Games—it is an honor for all the people from North East India. As one may recall, the Shillong Chamber Choir also performed for President Barack Obama during his official state visit at the Rashtrapathi Bhavan..
The Friends of Assam & Seven Sisters (FASS) International is an international non-profit non-governmental ‘think-tank’ organization for the welfare of the North East India. FASS is a registered charitable non?profit organization with US Federal Tax Exempt Status Under 501( c)(3) Code of IRS. (EIN No: 26?2882430). FASS is also Registered in India under Societies Registration Act XXI of 1860 Regn # RS/KAM/240/A?5/928 of 2006.
Northeast festival kicks off in Pune today
Pune’s community-based travel company Black Swan is embarking on a journey to understand the elusive north-eastern parts of the country. Their festivaa Puberun, which seeks to highlight the richness of Northeast Indian culture, will kick off in Pune today.
Talking about the festival, a Black Swan source said, “Puberun is an attempt to understand the elusive Northeastern region. This is the corner where myths abound, where many tribes have lived for centuries and established unique lifestyles. This is where natural beauty is a default reality, and music and dance are constant companions. Through Pubeun, which means ‘eastern sky’ in Assamese, Black Swan wants to celebrate the melange of colours and songs that the seven states swear by. The festival will feature talks by experts who understand these places the best. There will also be documentaries full of unique images and stories from these states. And, there will be food that will bring the magic right home to us.”
Black Swan has partnered with Grubshup restaurant in Law college road and Kipepeo, a Mumbai-based social enterprise that has environmental conservation at its heart.
Today the festival will begin in the morning with a talk on Manas National Park by Piran Elavia. The talk will cover the heritage of the Bodos and will also include a short movie on the conservation initiatives in Manas National Park. This will be followed by an illustrative talk about the park and Piran’s four years’ experience of working with the Bodo people. He has been working with the Bodo community since the past four years; and hopes to dispel the negative myths associated with this community by giving a brief of who the people actually are.
This will be followed by a talk by Neema Pathak Broome of Kalpavirksh on community conserved areas in the state of Nagaland.
In tomorrow’s session aptly titled ‘Amazing Arunachal’, different speakers will elucidate on the different aspects of Arunachal. Piran Elavia will deliver a talk on the Monpa community. Author Deepak Dalal will share his travel experiences in the state. Environment buff and author Shrikant Ingalhalikar will talk on the Eagle’s Nest Wildlife Sanctuary in the west Kameng. A talk titled ‘Caving in the abode of clouds’ will talk about the fascinating limestone caves of Meghalaya, and caving as an adventure sport. A short movie will be followed by an illustrated talk, the Black Swan representative said.
Apart from these informative sessions, Puberun will also feature a food festival dedicated to the cuisines of four states of the north-east - Mizoram, Manipur, Arunachal Pradesh and Assam. “We have drawn up an exhaustive menu that will feature the best and the most unique dishes cooked in the everyday kitchens of these states,” he said.