Bollywood dance performances, savory dishes and Indian American artisans among festival highlights
Charlotte, N.C. (Aug. 14, 2017) – In its 23rd year, Festival of India will return to Charlotte’s Center City
Saturday and Sunday, Sept. 9-10, 2017. The festival is expected to draw more than 20,000 people
throughout the weekend to experience a rich mosaic of diverse art, crafts, languages, fashions and cuisine
from the various regions of India. The two-day event will take place at Belk Theater at Blumenthal
Performing Arts Center and on two blocks of Tryon Street.
The festival is organized by the India Association of Charlotte, a nonprofit cultural organization established to serve the Indian American community in the Charlotte area. The primary mission of the organization is to share Indian culture with the larger American community and, in a spirit of cultural exchange, foster a better understanding of the cultural diversity of India among Charlotte-area communities.
Festival highlights include:
· Dance performances at Belk Theater: a medley of classical and modern fusion and Bollywood
beats performed by top choreographers and the best local talent clothed in costumes of diverse styles
and colors. There will be three 90-minute segments each day.
· Indian art gallery: a display of paintings, pottery and handicrafts by local Indian American artists.
· Exhibits on the cultural highlights that distinguish and define the rich diversity of various regions
· Remarkable Journey, a documentary about the history of Indian immigrants in North Carolina.
· Food vendors and outdoor dances with live pulsating music on Tryon Street: Food vendors will
offer savory samosa chaat, delicious chicken biryani, refreshing mango lassi, rice crispy (dosa), and
other North and South Indian cuisines.
· Indian Bazaar on Tryon Street and vendors inside Belk Theater selling colorful Indian traditional
dresses, saris, real gold and fashion jewelry, and handicrafts.
· Lecture by Martha Strawn, an Emeritus Professor of Art from UNCC on her new book “Across the
Threshold”, about old cultural traditions practiced by Indian women.
· Dramas: First one “Tinseltown” – follows the struggles of an aspiring actress. Second one
“Romance in the Garden” is an English adaptation of a seventh-century Sanskrit play The saint and
· Charlotte area middle schools’ special exhibits.
· Yoga demonstrations, henna tattoos and much more.
Starting from a smaller one-day affair at Spirit Square in 1995, the festival has grown to its current scale
where more than a thousand participants/artists and volunteers are involved to put the event together.
Festival of India receives financial and logistical support from many local organizations and business
entities. Food Lion continues as the title sponsor; additionally, Bank of America and Carolinas Healthcare
System are Platinum Sponsors. The Arts & Science Council and Charlotte Regional Visitors Authority
both serve as crucial partners in helping grow the festival as a premier cultural event in the Queen City.
Each year, the honorable Mayorwill proclaim Sept.9 “India Day” in Charlotte.
For more information, visit www.indiafestival.net or Festival of India on Facebook and Twitter.
About the India Association of Charlotte
The India Association of Charlotte (IAC) is a nonprofit, cultural organization established to serve the large
Indian Community in and around the Charlotte area. The goal is to help foster better understanding of
Indian culture by the community at large. The IAC started as a small team in 1994; its original charter was
signed by 20 people; and has been effective in catering to the cultural needs of over two thousand Indian families in the area. The core mission of the organization is to highlight and share the rich cultural diversity of the land of our birth with our friends and neighbors at large around the Carolinas. We also strive to educate the community about public policy issues of particular concern to our community.