Raj Patel

Bollywest posing for a photo.

South Asian Student Association Presents “SASA Night”

Apr 20, 2023

Niles West’s South Asian Student Association (SASA) collaborated with Niles North to present SASA Night on April 15. The night features multiple high schools and had a mix of dancing and singing and events, such as a fashion show, to highlight South Asian cultures. This is the first SASA Night that has been held since before the pandemic when the club was called Indo-Pak.

The schools that participated were New Trier, Elgin, Saint Charles North, Maine West, Maine East, South Elgin, Glenbrook North, Lane Tech, Hersey, Glenbrook South, Niles North and Niles West, along with appearances from Loyola University’s Bollywood dance team Naach and Mod. This year’s theme was based on a show called “Indian Matchmaking.”

“People from schools that we’ve never seen before have signed up and I feel like it’s a good opportunity for these schools to get themselves out there more,” senior Alina Andrews said.

Preparations for this event were taken very serious for each group involved. They practiced almost every day inside and outside of school, which made them eager to watch each other on stage. SASA performed a couples dance, an all-girl and all-boy dance and ended with an Indian folk dance called Bhangra. Performances from other schools include South Elgin’s Desi Mi Rollin, Glenbrook North’s Nazzare North and Niles North’s Nachle.

“I’m really excited for performing and seeing everyone else perform and seeing all the different dances from different schools. If you thought [the] international night was good, this is going to be an extension of that,” junior Hannah Joseph said.

Students were more than satisfied with their work. It was a fun event with friendly competition within the community. Specifically two church groups, Kna and Syro, were big competitors. Syro and Kna are two churches that are a part of the Mallu community. Although the churches are very similar, they both have a high population of SASA Night participants within the churches.

‘We turned the two dance performances of Kna Crew and Syro Gravity into a competition. It really hyped the crowd up and enhanced cheering and made the event more exciting. It was really fun to see this fun little mini competition,” junior Jeslyn Varghese said.

SASA Night is a great way for South-Asian students to connect and show off their culture and traditions. Hopefully, this is an event that will continue annually.

“SASA Night was really memorable because everyone was fully engaged the whole time. The dancers danced really well and everybody executed their parts well,” junior Josh Reginold said.

If the event becomes an annual tradition again, students can expect it to be hosted at Niles North next year. See you then!

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