By Ashley Troutman
Embrace Indian food, dance, and movies at Utsav!, a festival celebrating the Punjabi and Sikh cultures in Union Square Sept. 10 from 6 to 9 p.m.
The event, organized by the Somerville Arts Council and Somerville Community Access Television, is part of the ArtsUnion series – a program designed to stimulate the neighborhood’s economy through arts events.
At Utsav!, the Sikh Sangat Society will provide free salad, rice, Chole a Chickpea curry, and Naan an Indian flatbread. Vendors have Jalbi, a sweet fried dessert, Aloo-bikki, hash browns and onions with sauce, and vegetable fritters available.
Entertainment will include University Bhangra dancing, a martial arts team from New York City, Millis Gurdwara Yoga, and Somerville Gurdwara music. The Kartar Singh Anan and Group, from New Dehli, India, will perform.
Attendants can take part in Bhangra lessons, and a dance party. Try on a turban or sari, and pose for pictures.
The short films shown will feature Punjabi and Sikh traditions. They include clips from “Lollywood” movies, which are made in Pakistan.
The event will conclude with a party at the Independent restaurant. DJ Sharaabi Kapoor (a.k.a. Brother Cleve) will get the crowd moving with Punjabi music and special Indian cocktails available to purchase. Meagan O’Brien of the Somerville Arts Council said, “It’s going to be a really cool cultural experience that incorporates the Punjabi culture.”
Wendy Blom, Executive Director at SCAT, said, “We are really looking forward to it. It’s a packed event, we’ll have a lot of music and information on film. It will be a lot of fun, and you don’t have to be Punjabi to enjoy it.”