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The Student News Site of Tompkins High School

The Nestline

The Student News Site of Tompkins High School

The Nestline

Dhoom Machale on the Dance Floor

Garba+celebrants+lively+dance+around+each+other%2C+with+smiles+ear+from+ear.++Garba+is+a+traditional+dance+performed+during+Navratri.+
via The Times of India
Garba celebrants lively dance around each other, with smiles ear from ear. Garba is a traditional dance performed during Navratri.

Garba is an essential part of Gujarati culture and is often celebrated in communities worldwide. It is also a time for family and friends to come together and celebrate. Navratri traditional dances are performed joyfully and enthusiastically.

Sophomore Sara Gupta is from north India and celebrates Garba with great pride and enjoyment.

“Garba means to celebrate coming together and having fun; sometimes we leave Garba at like sunrise, and we don’t even realize the time,” said Gupta.

During Navratri, the nine nights are dedicated to Durga, a Hindu God, during which Garba occurs. Gupta and her friends visit her house to get ready. All her friends dress up in colorful and elegant lehengas (an item of South Asian clothing). When they arrive at the event, the place is filled with Bollywood music and people of all ages are performing classical Indian dances. As the night continues and most of the classical dances are finished, the real fun begins.

“After the elders are done performing, Garba turns into an Indian Homecoming,” said Gupta.

The most fun part of Garba for teenagers begins after the elders finish their classical dances. Many teenagers huddle in the middle of the hall. The lights go off, the music blares louder, and the never-ending mosh pit starts. Singing, dancing and jumping, creating a chaotic atmosphere. Everyone has a great time enjoying this vibrant and energetic celebration of culture. Finally, when the sun rises, the music turns itself off, and tired but joyful faces leave to only remember this moment of Garba as one of the thrilling nights.

Sophomore Sritha Indhurthy is also one of the many Desi people who take pride in their culture by expressing it through dance celebrations like Garba.

“It is fun to see a bunch of Indian people in one place because you do not see it so often. Garba is an event where many Indian people come together,” said Indhurthy.

It is sometimes hard to find cultural appreciation because many do not participate in certain activities or beliefs. But for Indhurthy, events like Garba help embrace her cultural identity.  It is a way to celebrate their culture, share traditions, and create memories with their friends and family. Indhurthy feels a sense of pride and belonging when participating in Garba and is reminded of her roots and heritage. She also loves the vibrant music, colorful costumes and the energy of the crowds. She believes Garba is a great way to honor her Indian heritage and connect with her community.

“From 9 p.m. to 11 p.m.,we do cultural dances, then when everybody leaves, we dance to Bollywood songs,” said Indhurthy.

As much as Garba is a vast dance, it is essential to remember the religious part of the dance that celebrates the Hindu gods. Garba is a Hindu religious festival celebrating the divine feminine called Shakti. It is believed that by performing the Garba dance and singing traditional songs, people can connect with Shakti and receive her blessings. Small shrines are set up around the dance floor during the festival, and offerings are made to the gods. These offerings are believed to bring good luck and prosperity. Additionally, the traditional songs sung during Garba are believed to be prayers to the gods. Thus, Garba is a way to honor and celebrate the divine feminine and seek her blessings.

Desi students at Tompkins High School love embracing their culture and religion with Garba.  The festival promotes a sense of community and encourages unity among Indian cultures. The festival is also celebrated as a time of joy and celebration and is seen as a way of bringing family and friends together.

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About the Contributor
Elia Naz, Staff Writer
Sophomore,Elia Naz found her passion to pursue journalism through her love of english and poetry. She enjoys interviewing people and writing stories which display their individuality. She especially enjoys writing entertainment stories. In her free time she rides or spends time with her family.

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    Army BajajNov 13, 2023 at 4:12 pm

    Bravo!!! KEEP IT UP GUYS WOWOWOW

    Reply