By Elijah Clarke, Staff Writer
The Arya Dance Academy’s performance preluded the 19th annual Asian Art Festival on March 26 in the Fine Arts Auditorium.
This year, the Asian Art Festival and the Outdoor Festival were combined into one big event on Armstrong’s campus. “I attended because I support the enrichment of Asian culture,” freshman business economics major Tajae Francis said.
This event was the first time that the Academy had performed at Armstrong and their dances incorporated a lot of prayer-like movements and instruments.
After their performance, Armstrong’s President Linda Bleiken thanked the mayor of Savannah for attending the performance.
She then introduced Mayor of Savannah, Edna Jackson and councilman Tony Thomas to speak. Jackson spoke on her former attendance of Armstrong and the appreciation she has for the school.
The first two dances were followed by Pushan Shah. He was given a special introduction for being a senior in their group, and for having a very strong dance background. Shah performed solo as the first male dancer of the evening. During his song, he moved with many slight ticks and sways.
Next, dancers between the ages 4-9 years old took the stage. After the kids finished performing, they quickly transitioned to the teenage group to perform next. When the teenaged group finished, the younger kids came back to the stage to answer some questions. They expressed how much they enjoyed dancing and the event overall.
The younger age group closed the event with a modern dance followed by one more performance by Shah. Ending songs consisted of “Jai Ho!” mixed with Indian songs as well as modern ones. “Bad” by Michael Jackson was heard in the background, and so was “On the Floor” by Jennifer Lopez. The audience was then invited to come up on the stage and dance as they replayed the last song, and dance around without a routine.
“It was really awesome,” freshman pre engineering major, Dwayne King said. “The best thing I’ve ever seen.”