Thursday, May 9, 2013

Kelley Cultural Caravan!

By Deepti Saripalli, First-year MBA, Marketing
Indian Bangara dance

Kelley’s motto is “one school… endless possibilities”… However on the night of April 26th, 2013, I believe it could have been changed to “one school... endless talents”.

On that night the Kelley MBA program witnessed a cultural extravaganza in the form of the Kelley Cultural Caravan, Multi-Cultural Night – an annual event of food, dancing and music produced by the Asian MBA Association and the Latin MBA Association. Every year the event grows bigger and more colorful than it was the previous year and this year was no exception. All stops were pulled by the organizers to make this event memorable and spectacular!

On April 8th during the Monday morning coffee break a flash mob of students took onlookers by surprise when they broke into a Gangam Style dance and other numbers. While the entire school watched amused, the participants showed them a glimpse of what could be expected from the cultural night! From then on there was no stopping the mad rush for tickets!
Flash Mob to generate hype!

Preparations for the event began months in advance. Practices for the dances sometimes went late into the night. Some dance sequences were complicated and quite exhausting. I realized just how zealous and energetic my classmates were, during this one month, when even after long hours of dance practice the night before, they would come completely prepared for the classes next day. Multi-tasking took on a whole new meaning!

Indian Dance

The practice sessions were fun, with people learning about the cultures and traditions of the country’s dance they were performing. While some clearly were born to dance, many took a while to pick up the moves. The best advice that I heard was from a classmate who said – “Dance like no one is watching! Smile and have fun while you dance!”  I guess the same principle applies to life too…

On the night of the event, delicious Indian, Thai, Chinese and Mexican dishes were served, and the lines at the buffet only kept getting longer! 

Japanese fisherman dance

Performances began soon after dinner and the audience could not help but cheer as 1st and 2nd years danced along to Indian, Japanese, Taiwanese, and Latin dance numbers.  Kelley MBAs proved once again that they were indeed multi-faceted and could handle any task (be it interviews or complicated dance sequences!) with grace and poise, having fun all the while!  The event closed with a Latin dance number, joined in by Matt Semadeni (the Core strategy professor), always a great sport!

Core strategy professor Matt Semadeni doing the Latin limbo

Overall the night was loads of fun, but the days leading up to it - the practice sessions, running around for costumes, last minute adjustments, frantic phone calls to event organizers, urgent meetings, late night dinners with the dance group, falling asleep out of sheer exhaustion – were totally worth it! 

Though we were all super happy the event was a huge success, I guess it being over also saddened us a bit. Having been part of such an amazing event this year I cannot wait for the multi-cultural night next year. I am stacking up on energy drinks for the same, as I write this blog!

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