Ah, India. Land of spice, color and, of course, the amazing Bollywood. The Indian equivalent of Hollywood produces almost as many films, but with less violence and a lot more singing and dancing. India Unveiled promises to deliver a similar lavish experience with a local showcase of the best of classical, folk, and popular Indian music and dance.
Now in its 26th year, the event aspires to show a side of Indian culture that may not be apparent to many locals. Organizer Jay Patel describes the Indian community in Colorado Springs: "Many of us are white-collar, educated people working in the technology sector. We thought it would be great for us to get out from behind our intellectual stereotype and positively demonstrate our culture. Everything we do [in the show] is absolutely authentic, from our costumes to our sets."
The program's popularity has grown immensely over the last 10 years, and it has become so respected that several international satellite television channels air segments of the program. Locally, several prominent figures have become great fans of the event -- a benefit for the Child Development Center of Urban League of the Pikes Peak Region -- including former Mayor Mary Lou Makepeace and Colorado College President and former United States ambassador to India Richard Celeste.
India Unveiled is also a celebration of Diwali, the most popular festival in India. Originally a festival with Hindu origins, the Sikh and Jain religions have also embraced it. In northern India, lamps are lit in celebration of the return of King Rama after a 14-year exile and a war with Ravana, the demon king. Those celebrating in the south remember the triumph of good over evil with the legend of Krishna's defeat of the hell-demon Narakasura. The holiday is marked by the consumption of sweets, lighting of lanterns, dressing up and exchanging cards.
-- Bettina Swigger
capsule India Unveiled
Saturday, Nov. 13, 5:30 p.m.
Pikes Peak Center, 190 S. Cascade Ave.
$12-25; children $8; children 5 and under free