Bollywood Fiesta brings Latinx, Indian cultural fusion to campus


Bollywood dancing being taught at the Bollywood Fiesta

Sanjali De Silva, Senior Staff Reporter

Melding the flavors and rhythm of Latinx and Indian culture, Tulane GENTE and The Indian Association of Tulane came together in a collaboration event this Sunday. 

The Bollywood Fiesta event brought in over 80 students for empanadas, samosas and dancing. 

At the beginning of the night, members of GENTE taught event-goers the salsa, followed by Bollywood dancing lessons from members of IATU. 

Sunday evening had a large focus on dance due to popular demand from past events. 

“We noticed that last year people really enjoyed the tutorials so we wanted to make it more specific to dance,” IATU co-vice president Parshva Vakharia said. “We feel that Bollywood and Latin music is just really peppy, good to dance on and it could be a good way to bring people from both the cultural backgrounds together.”

Last year, IATU partnered with GENTE and Tulane University Vietnamese Association for International Love, a similar fusion event with food, activities and dancing. 

International Love was the first time IATU partnered with another multicultural student organization on campus. Vakharia emphasized the importance of co-programmed events, saying he thinks representation for minorities on campus is growing, but there isn’t enough collaboration. 

“I feel like there is still a disconnect between the different minorities,” Vakharia said. “Everybody is trying to look after their own interests and I feel like if we are able to co-program we bring all of us together and break those barriers and cultural differences.” 

GENTE co-president Juan Olarte was pleased to see such a large turnout at the event. 

“We think it’s a good idea and we really appreciate IATU reaching out to us to co-program with them,” Olarte said. 

IATU will partner with Undergraduate Student Government Gender and Sexuality Advisory Council for a Holi celebration on Saturday, Mar. 14.  They also hope to have events like the Bollywood Fiesta become an annual February occurrence.

“I hope this turns into a bigger event where we have more and more people and more organizations wanting to come and co-program with us,” Vakharia said. 

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