Puranava Art & Culture Fest : Traditional Indian Treat to the Senses

Puranava chariot parade


PEARLAND: The 6th Annual Puranava Indian Art & Culture Fest 2024 was a treat to all the senses with its vibrant color and costumes, smells and tastes of delicious Indian spices and delicaciesmelodious traditional Indian music, and a plethora of hands-on things to do from games, arts, crafts, henna to shopping for clothes, jewelry, and much more. 

This signature event that saw a floating crowd of over 1400 throughout the day was presented by nonprofit Global Organization for Divinity and held at Pearland Town Center. It was supported by a cultural arts grant from the City of Pearland through the Pearland Convention and Visitors Bureau. 

Street performances included a traditional folk dance from western India.

On the stage throughout the day, dancers of all ages from sweet kids to graceful adults, dressed in colorful, varying costumes representing one of the six different classical Indian dance forms, competed for prizes at the classical dance competition. In the evening, there were both classical as well as folk art performances – varieties of Indian regional percussion (Chenda melam, Parai drums), special dances from the south Indian state of Tamil Nadu where pots are balanced on the dancers’ heads (Karagattam) and a ‘fight dance’ with sticks (Silambattam); a unique devotional ‘Mavuli dance’ from western India; and a classical Bharatanatyam showcase. 

 The visual treat continued through the finale in the evening with a number of vibrant street performances in front of a replica of an Indian temple chariot, beginning with the amazing west Indian Marathi Dhol Tasha and Lezim percussion dance by beautifully attired performers from The Woodlands. This was followed by two south Indian folk dances by children (Kurathi), a Gujarati Garbha dance from west India, a graceful east Indian Bengali springtime dance, and a lovely Tiruvadirai devotional dance by white-attired dancers from south Indian state of Kerala. 

During the day, youth and children also participated in classical music, art, chess, and quiz contests conducted in a separate room in the mall. A creative Kids Zone offered numerous hands-on art & craft activities and games for children to try. There was delicious Indian vegetarian street food sold by “Kicha’s Kitchen” which is run exclusively by volunteers. The bazaar saw several vendors selling and displaying art, craft, Indian clothes, jewelry, and other services. The grand sponsor of the event was SPARC Houston – Dr. Sunanda Nair’s Performing Arts Center.  

 Love to Share Foundation America also conducted a donation drive to support Sunnyside Street Dogs in Houston. Representatives from Sunnyside Street Dogs received the donations at during Puranava 2024. 

 More pictures from the Puranava Indian Art & Culture Fest can be found at its Facebook event page, and info about Puranava can be found at www.puranava-usa.org/houston. For more information about Global Organization for Divinity Houston and its activities, please visit the Facebook page, GOD Houston. For more information about Love to Share Foundation America and its activities, please visit www.lovetosharefoundation.org.