India Parent October (Cultural)

www.indiaparentmagazine.org • October 2018 magazine India Parent Bridging Communities Since 1994

BATA’ S N ARI TURNS B AY A REA ’ S WORKING MOMS INTO RAMP RAMP WALKING WALKI FASHIONISTAS !

B AYA A REANS FELICITATE G URU V ISHAL R AMANI FOR HER RECORD OF 250 ARANGETRAMS ( DANCE DEBUTS ) CONDUCTED OVER 40 YEARS !

C HANGE THAT I NDIA NEEDS

X-R AY M EET M URALI K RISHNAMURTHY , FOUNDER OF S ANKARA E YE F OUNDATION

Coming Soon! South Santa Clara County (Gilroy, Morgan Hill, South San Jose) Special Section!

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Summer Camp Special 2018

Happy Diwali to all our Readers!

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Summer Camp Special 2018

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October 2018

Want your child to get into an Ivy League? Dr. Jiang seems to know how! The Ivy Advisor

Ph.D. from Ivy League school Columbia University. He served as a tenured full professor for twenty-six years until his retirement from San Jose State University at 2016. He also served as Dean of Faculty and Director of School of Management in San Jose State University. His biography has appeared since 1997 in Who's Who Among Asian Americans, Marquis Who's Who in America, Marquis Who's Who in Business and Finance and Marquis Who's Who in the World. Dr. William Jiang is trilingual: English, Chinese, and Spanish. and partner of The Ivy Advisor, an education consulting and college admissions counseling firm. Dr. William Jiang guided his son and daughter to Ivy League schools (son to Harvard and daughter to Cornell). He has also guided over a hundred stu- dents to Harvard, Yale, Princeton, MIT, Stanford and ALL other elite colleges over the years. He, along with his wife who helps him with all administrative and admission work so as to let Dr. Jiang focus on his methods of teaching and consulting, runs The Ivy Advisor successfully making it the top such col- lege counseling and SAT prep institu- tion. Several parents who admit their children into the Ivy Advisor told IPM that they are extremely happy with the results and would also bring their sec- ond child for training under Dr. Jiang. WHY THE IVY ADVISOR Dr. William Jiang is the founder

Many students these days are both well-rounded and academic achievers with dreams of getting admission into a good college. You just have to visit a Lynbrook or a Monta Vista high school to observe this phenomenon first hand. These students crave a good col- lege to hone their skills and fuel the trajectory of their careers. Other students still research around, looking for the right guidance to help them advance to their goals. Both breeds of students need a com- mon guiding force to help them selec- tively and precisely carve out their future. That's where Dr. Jiang's Ivy Advisor comes in. By mentoring stu- dents and helping them follow a well- researched, unique path based on the student's academic passions, success at the Ivy Advisor seems almost unavoidable. W HAT STUDENTS AND PARENTS HAVE TO SAY ABOUT D R . J IANG (Actual names of the students have been changed to protect their privacy) Karen, U Chicago "Hi Dr. Jiang, Just wanted to say THANK YOU for everything! I found out I was accepted early to U Chicago earlier today and I could not thank you enough for all the help and guidance you've given me through this journey. Thank you for sup- porting me every step of the way! This is honestly such a dream come true, and I am so thankful and blessed for all your sup- port."

Joseph, SAT "Dear Dr. Jiang, I recently took the October SAT and scored a 1580, which I was really surprised about because I was just a sophomore. I think your summer class for the Advanced English reader real- ly helped me build my vocabulary and helped me with the writing section! Thank you so much for the fun class, and I hope to see you again in the future!" Sekhar, SAT "Hello Professor Jiang, Many years ago, I took your SAT class. I am writing this email to thank you for the great class I took many years ago. I am entering my final year at the University of Chicago and preparing for the GMAT exam. After all these years, I am using your SAT Handbook to study! The concepts in these books are definitely applicable to the GMAT and are presented in a clear and concise manner. I have never considered myself a good writer. However, the gram- mar you taught me stuck with me through- out college. My papers are much stronger because of the rules you taught me! I am also able to effectively edit the writing of my peers as well! Thank you, again, for the great SAT class. Looking back on my col- lege papers and looking forward to the GMAT, I realize how impactful your class has been beyond the SAT." MEET DR. WILLIAM JIANG Professor William Jiang possesses a rare depth and width of knowledge, having obtained four Master's degrees and one Ph.D. degree, including an M.Phil. (Master of Philosophy) and a

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"I feel every penny spent on Ivy Advisor is worth it. My first child got a very high SAT score and I am starting my second one here soon," gushed one parent. Dr. Jiang is especially well versed in English language

MAJOR SERVICES

•College Counseling Services: •Roadmaps for Middle & High school students •Summer Program Planning and Application

• Educational Package for 8th-12th grades • College Application Package for Seniors • Admission Essays Only

and literature. When he was a junior in college in China, he translated from English into Chinese four major English classic novels. The translated works were 1) To Kill a Mockingbird (Harper Lee), The Egoist (George Meredith), The Secret Sharer (Joseph Conrad), and The Efficiency Expert (Edgar Rice Burroughs). He also translated from English to Chinese at least fifty famous short stories by such well-known English U.S. authors, such as James Joyce, Joseph Conrad, Ernest Hemingway, William Faulkner, John Irwin, Susan Glaspell, etc. During his graduate school years in China, University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign, and Columbia University, he continued to produce over a dozen literary theoretical articles and critiques of classic poetry and novels. He has taught SAT, ACT, Advanced English, AP English Language and Composition, and AP English Literature and Composition for many years. Dr. Jiang has also served as College Board SAT Essay Reader, and is cur- rently a senior member of National Association of College Admissions Counseling (NACAC). He regularly provides high school students with college counseling services, sum- mer program applications, and college application services.

IVY - ENGLISH CLASSES: • Classic Star English (4-5th grade) • Essential English (6-7th grade) • Advanced English (8-12th grade)

The Ivy Advisor's Dr. William Jiang has designed the Ivy English enhancement classes specifically for talented students with the following overall goals: • Enhance Skills in Reading, Writing, Grammar, and Vocabulary • Start Early in SAT/ACT, AP English and College Preparations • Develop Well-Rounded Knowledge about Humanities and Civilization • Heighten Capacity for Understanding and Enjoying Life Enrich Overall Educational Experience

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and helped them achieve their individual goals, whether they be earning a full score on standardized exams, getting A's in their classes at school, or being admitted into the college of their dreams. Being able to help students at such formative years of their lives truly puts a smile on our faces.

The class will consist of the following specific contents and learning objectives: • Vocabulary-building • Guided classic English reading: read classic novels and multiple classic stories • Learning to appreciate and analyze classic poems

STATISTICS

Please come stop by our office any time to check out our classrooms and services. Our staff is always willing to answer any and all questions you have; we provide guidance and assistance in nearly every step of the way - from when your child first enters middle school to when they graduate high school. We have been in the business for quite some time now and have established ourselves in the community, but we always welcome new faces. We are sure that your students will not be disappointed with the results they see after spending some time at our school.

• Guided and graded writing assignments in the form of book reports • Feedback on each writing assignment for each student STANDARDIZED TEST PREP - SAT/PSAT, SAT II, ACT, SSAT, and ISEE - AP English Language and AP Literature: 80% received 5's

in Lang; 90% received 5's in Lit - AP Calculus and AP Biology

All in all, Dr. Jiang is passionate about positively influencing the lives of these young adults and has been incredibly successful doing so. We, at The Ivy Advisor, have impacted hundreds of students' lives

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October 2018

One on one with Norman Gershenz, Director, SaveNature.org, and co-founder, Insect Discovery Lab

SAVENATURE.ORG AND INSECT DISCOVERY LAB BRING ENVIRONMENTAL LITERACY TO CHILDREN THROUGH FUN AND PARTICIPATION THIS SUMMER!

Insect Discovery Lab, an award win- ning, hands-on educational outreach program using insects to inspire kids to save wildlife in wild places. The goal of this portable lab is to nurture environmental literacy, creating a pop- ulation of young people whose approach to their environment reflects responsibility, stewardship and com- mitment. Today, the Insect Discovery Lab presents more than 800 programs a year, reaching more than 38,000 chil- dren annually. Bringing the lab into the classroom has allowed Norm to have direct influence in children's lives. In 2005 and 2006 he nurtured and nomi- nated a young medically challenged 10-year-old boy for the Young International Eco-Hero Award and the Gloria Barron Prize for Young Heroes. The boy won both awards, and in turn is working to inspire other children around the world.

Norman director SaveNature.org is the very embodi- ment of the spirit of preserving the nat- ural world. Over his 41-year career, he has shared his love of nature with nearly half a million young students, helping to ignite their own desires to become active stewards of the earth. Building on their enthusiasm, he has created multiple opportunities for them to put their activism to work. He has trained teachers and educational specialists to keep spreading the word, has taken his message to the airwaves and on the road to major news media, conservation organizations, and edu- cational institutions. Norm's signature impact is the ripple effect. From his post in San Francisco as co-founder and CEO of SaveNature.Org and co- founder of the Insect Discovery Lab, he has pushed out into the world an empowering, hopeful, but urgent mes- sage of agency to their young: the world is in your hands. In 1998, Norm co-founded the Gershenz,

One on one with Norman Gershenz, Director, SaveNature.org, and co-founder, Insect Discovery Lab. He talks about summer camps, birthday parties and the importance of reconnecting kids to outdoor explorations! "There is nothing like the Insect Discovery Lab - watching a young child have the opportunity to hold a Madagascar hissing cockroach or a giant African millipede changes their life forever." IPM: Can you please tell us your a little about the kind of birthday par- ties you conduct for youngsters? Norman Gershenz (NG): Our edu- cator brings "fun science" to the party! The Insect Discovery Lab is the most hands-on experience any birthday child (or family) can imagine - dark- ling beetles, eastern lubber grasshop- pers, giant African millipedes, Australian walking sticks and much more! We ask to limit the group to around 20 kids (we know there could be up to 20 adults present as well) so we present to both the children and the adults. NG: There is nothing like the Insect Discovery Lab - watching a young child have the opportunity to hold a Madagascar hissing cockroach or a giant African millipede changes their life forever. Also, we are the only group that links this "nature" experi- ence with actually saving nature in rainforest and coral reefs through SaveNature.Org's Adopt-An Acre and Adopt-A-Reef program. IPM: How do you think it's differ- ent from other such parties?

arship to Bay Area elementary schools, reaching students in grades K- 4 and their teachers from urban schools with scientific hands-on pre- sentations over the period of the school calendar year. Brief history of SaveNature.org Founded in 1988, SaveNature.Org focused its efforts on protecting threat- ened ecosystems and natural commu- nities through conservation programs, such as Adopt an Acre® and Reef®. While SaveNature's general focus is conservation, in 1998 SaveNature.Org restructured efforts to connect youth to nature by providing educational pro- grams that serves over 2,500 inner city youth and more than 30,000 students in the greater San Francisco Bay Area each year. SaveNature.Org has devel- oped one of the most successful educa- tional outreach programs for the greater San Francisco Bay Area com- munity, teaching and impacting more than half-million children since 1998; presenting more than 800 programs annually. Their goal is to provide a pathway for children to develop a con- fidence of belonging in relation to all things independent from turmoil at home or at school. Ultimately, building a foundation to ensure youth take responsibility for creating a positive change in their lives and in their com- munities. They have created three proven and dynamic hands-on classes to fos- ter enthusiasm about science and nature. These programs are part of their new Nature Academy. They are Owl Pellet Discovery, the art of Squid Science Dissection and EdibleEdVentures - linking the health of the planet to the health of a child. Nature Academy is fashioned after the Insect Discovery Lab, one of the most successful educational outreach pro- grams in the United States. To date, the Insect Discovery Lab has touched the lives of more than 521,044 children since 1998 with the Insect Discovery Lab's BugMobile®. Their goal is to grow the Nature Academy as we have the Insect Discovery Lab with commit- ment and passion.

wild places in nature.

IPM: How many kids can you

cater at one time?

SaveNature.Org's mission is to link people to save wildlife and wild places through the purchase and pro- tection of habitat in nature. Its goal is to bring educational equality to those underserved in their community, increasing the opportunity for real and personal environmental stewardship for this generation and future genera- tions. Their educational outreach pro- grams provide a pathway for children to wonder and develop an anchor of belonging to their natural environ- ment. Ultimately building a founda- tion to ensure youth take responsibili- ty for creating a positive change in their lives, in their community, and, in the world. The cornerstone goal of all of their programs is to nurture environmental literacy and create a population of young people whose approach to their environment reflects responsibility, stewardship and commitment. Their program activities provide connec- tions and opportunities for youth to develop a deeper understanding of themselves and their community ecosystem. Through encounters with nature in the city and exposure to sci- ence as a hands-on process, students will be able to grow as leaders in their school and the community. New Programs SaveNature.org created three proven and dynamic hands-on classes to foster enthusiasm about science and nature. These programs are part of our new Nature Academy. They are Owl Pellet Discovery, the art of Squid Science Dissection and EdibleEdVentures - linking the health of the planet to the health of a child. Nature Academy is fashioned after the Insect Discovery Lab, one of the most successful educational outreach pro- grams in the United States. To date, the Insect Discovery Lab has touched the lives of more than 521,044 children since 1998 with the Insect Discovery Lab's BugMobile®. Our goal is to grow the Nature Academy as we have the Insect Discovery Lab with commit- ment and passion. SaveNature.Org is creating schol-

NG: Around 20, but we can accom-

modate up to 25.

IPM: Can you explain a little bit about method of education on insects if any? NG: We present about anatomy, warning coloration, camouflage, defense strategy, survival, biodiversity of insects, communication, general entomological knowledge, species identification, and Inspiration! IPM: What is the daily schedule for a child for summer programs if any? NG: We are available 7 days a week. IPM: How do you deal with chal- lenging kids? What is your disciplin- ing method? NG: We have educators with more than 20 years of experience in presen- tation and the classroom. We work with great respect and intention with children and adults. NG: We prefer a background in biology, drama and education. Every teacher/Insect Discovery Lab educa- tional specialist goes through rigorous training, shadowing, and evaluation before they present to the public. IPM: How is the ethnic mix in your camps/summer specials? Do you welcome all? NG: Absolutely! IPM: What kind of background do you expect from your teachers? IPM: Do you think a happy child can be expected from your camps? NG: As I mentioned, our hands-on experience changes the lives of chil- dren to have a deeper love for nature.

IPM: What is your message to our

readers?

NG: The Insect Discovery Lab pro- motes the importance of outdoor exploration and reconnects kids with nature creating a love and joy for the natural world and to become environ- mental stewards to save wildlife and

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X-Ray: Meet our Community Leaders

Murali Krishnamurthy Founded Sankara Eye Foundation, USA ( www.giftofvision.org) in 1998 to raise funds for free eye surgeries. Set a big vision of 'Vision 20/20 by 2020. Recruited, motivated and challenged volunteers to bring out their potential to achieve more. Progress has been phenomenal - from 8,000 free eye surgeries in 1998 to more than 106,000 free eye surgeries in 2010. The revenue is now close to $4 Million and there are more than 200 volunteers all over the country.

and learn from these challenges. These challenges then turn out to be the stepping stones to our next big dream, our next big project.

• Can you please tell us a lit- tle about your background? Why Sankara Eye Foundation? I had been a software engi- neer by profession here in the Silicon Valley. My Uncle, Mr P. Balasubramanian, who was vol- unteering for Sankara Eye Foundation (SEF) India, encour- aged my brother (K. Sridharan) and I to start a chapter for Sankara Eye Foundation (SEF) here in the US to support the

• What or who has been your inspiration to found Sankara Eye? Sankara Eye Foundation was started in India in 1977 by a wonderful Doctor couple Drs. Radha Ramani & R V Ramani with the advice and blessing from Shri Sankaracharya of Kanchi. These doctors have dedicated their lives to SEF and in turn the organi- zation has grown and the growth and difference it is making also inspires us to do better each day. Our inspiration and motivation to expand and grow the organization to all corners of India was seeded by our uncle, Mr. P. Balasubramaniam. The inspiration and motivation grew with all the volunteers, donors and all support- ers of the organization. This is a grassroots organization and most of the funds come from retail sources - individual donors. We raise funds by doing banquets, sending newsletters and doing various events. Yes, cer- tainly the events like these concerts, Dandia etc. are a huge way to help spread the word and in turn get donations as we raise aware- ness about the project. These events also help energize volunteers who put their heart and soul into planning and organizing these events. • How is the 20/20 goal look like now? Are you almost there? We currently have 9 hospitals and building 3 more in Indore, Mumbai, and Hyderabad. We have so far done 1.75 million free eye surgeries and we are on track to reach our goal of vision 2020 - of eradicating curable blindness by year 2025. We want to reach all regions of India where there is a need for eyecare and have set ourselves a target of supporting 500,000 free eye surgeries per year. To accelerate our growth, to cover areas not covered by SEF hospitals, and to reach our goals faster, we have launched an ini- tiative of partnering with various existing free eye care providers who meet the eye care and charitable standards set by SEF. • What is your message to our readers? Any project when worked on along with the community yields very purposeful and positive results. We seek your support in helping this noble cause of eradicating curable blindness in India. You can do so in many ways - by donating, by attending our events, by helping spread the word, or by volunteering. • What do you think of India Parent Magazine? India Parent Magazine has been a longtime supporter of SEF and we truly appreciate them helping us in our journey to brighten this world. • What are the main avenues of resources to fund hospitals in India? Do concerts help?

great work being done by SEF in India and help them grow. We hesitated quite a bit and almost avoided talking to my uncle for a while due to his persistence about us doing something for SEF. However, after my brother’s visit to the hospital and him getting convinced of the great work being done in SEF, and the need for free eye care, we started SEF here in the US in 1998. We never expected it to grow this big, though I was always inspired by Swami Vivekanand's thoughts of dreaming big. We started small and poured our heart and soul into this and since that day, there is no looking back. It gave a purpose to my life and to the lives of hundreds of volunteers across the country. Today, SEF has grown into one of the largest free eye care providers in the world and together we are helping brighten this world, one eyesight at a time. • What has been the response like from the Silicon Valley? Silicon Valley and its residents have been very kind and pas- sionate in supporting the endeavors of SEF. This is a grassroots organization and we get a lot of support from the community. We are headquartered here and have our largest presence here, though we do have chapters across US. We are lucky to be in a place like Silicon Valley, which is filled with generous individuals, corporations and organizations. Many of the Silicon Valley corporations encourage the employees to donate funds by matching their donations dollar for dollar. A lot of these organizations encourage their employees to volunteer for various charities and donate to charities based on the hours vol- unteered by their employees. • What kind of support did you receive from the corporations here in the Valley? Were they willing to help? • What are the difficulties if any did you encounter in India? In terms of NGO issues? These hospital projects are humongous and like it would be in any other country, finding and acquiring land, getting needed approvals sometimes does pose challenges. However, we grow

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BATA’ S N ARI TURNS BAY AREA ’ S WORKING MOMS INTO RAMP WALKING FASHIONISTAS !

Naari. Followed by a mixture of Kuchipudi and Tollywood dances and melodic singing. More game shows with the audience being center of attention were thoroughly enjoyed. The pinnacle of the evening came as the cat walk began with a traditional Kuchipudi dancing & Shravan Kumar introduced and explained more than 40 different outfits modeled in 4 different segments. Starting with beau- tiful Tereyalumal weaves & Gollabhama collection leading in to eye catching Banaras silk weaves and ending with gor- geous evening gowns each consisting of 10 woven sarees. Shravan ended the show by doing a workshop and Q&A on how to drape a beautiful Saree, what a woman should look for in traditional style & how to take care of our best hand- looms. The participants described their experience as a priced moment that has changed their sense of style and the way they view themselves. More importantly it brought a group of likeminded women together and created a powerful bond. Every single attendee left with a smile on their face and complete satisfaction of an evening full of guilt free fun and enjoyment that has served as a platform to uplift an age old artist community that weaves our traditions in to the most Vijaya Aasuri, Srilu Veligeti, Sireesha Battula, Sridevi Pasupuleti, Kalyani Chikoti, Swati Malla and Deepika Vangala were recognized on stage and commended for organizing an amazing show that was fun, stimulating & seamless. comfortable clothing on the planet. The BATA organizing committee,

Women in many traditions are considered purveyors of culture & guardians of tradition. This year’s Naari event conducted by BATA in Fremont Royal palace not only embodied that sentiment to its core but raised funds for the upliftment of 3800 widows and 40000 down trodden handloom weavers to encourage fam- ilies to continue a brilliant art form of Indian heritage that’s on the brink of extinction. An amazing once in a life time opportunity was created for women from all walks of life showcasing the beauty from within as believed by national award winner designer and philanthropist Shravan Kumar. He handpicked and draped sarees and outfits for all the women that signed up to model his new collection on the cat walk to raise funds for the cause. This brilliant and caring designer has found- ed this trust to help many weaving families brought to light. His designs were unique, cutting edge, traditional and feel like second skin. The evening started off with guests being greeted in the royally decorated foyer with a beautiful back drop for pic- tures, a large bar providing free cocktails and mock-tails. The main ball room was a feast to the eyes as it dazzled with its gold and pink hued decor and gorgeous centerpieces decorated by Akrisha Wedding and Event Planners. There was another area for Photo op along with free mehndi, nail art and an exhibition of designer Sharavan’s collection. A large variety of appetizers and later a feast fit for royalty was provided by ‘Biriyani Pot’. The entertainment began with an icebreaker for the guests at all tables expressing their view and meaning of

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October 2018

MEDITATION Tool Of Success for our Youth

shared their perspective on meditation and the impact it has on their lives. They spoke about the change and effect on their abil- ity to succeed in all areas of life. Nehaarika Mulukutla, a 22yr young woman, said that regular practice of meditation has given her a sense of grounded-ness, centered-ness, resilience, and calmness. Vivek Ramanan, also 22, agreed with Nehaarika and added that meditation helps him especially when faced with an unexpected or a surprising situation. Vivek had learned the prac- tice of Sudarshan Kriya, a breath based tool taught by the Art of Living at the age of 7. He noted that Sudarshan Kriya, as a part of a structured program had taught him how to de-stress. At the age of 16 he learned Sahaj Samadhi, a personal meditation prac- tice; Vivek described this as being unstructured, more natural and organic, something he had to get used to. It taught him to be in the present moment and as he continued to practice - espe- cially in group settings - it got easier and effortless. Kush Jain (18) only recently learned to meditate and reflect- ed his friends’ opinions. He said that meditation keeps him calmer and makes it easier for him to get through the day. All of them agreed that a consistent practice of meditation has given the ability to better handle emotions and stressful situations while gaining more focus and resilience.

By Sunanda Gadagottu ! “Unveiling Infinity” – a meditation event held at the San Jose Convention Center the weekend of July 21st - was attended by approximately 2000 participants, several of whom were young adults under the age of 30. The program taught by His Holiness Sri Sri Ravi Shankar, world renowned spiritual and peace leader, was a special event organized by the volunteers of the Art of Living Foundation to bring the knowledge of medita- tion to the larger community. The program’s uniqueness lies in its source – an ancient text named Vignan Bhairav. The name lit- erally translates to the “Science of Consciousness” and is a less known scripture than Bhagawad Geeta, the tools being technical in nature. Sri Sri Ravi Shankar stated that the knowledge and the tools lost over time are among the simplest, yet profoundly effec- tive tools to experiencing meditation. Sri Sri came to the bay area while touring North America teaching the program in several cities. The techniques are relevant to current times making med- itation simple and effortless, much needed in today’s busy lifestyle. The young men and women who attended the program

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October 2018

15th Annual BATA-TANA Cup in Partnership with SRCA for Kerala Flood Relief – A Resounding Success!

Sateesh Vemuri from TANA along with TANA Team (Rajnikanth, Vinay) thanked all the participating teams and affirmed TANA’s continued support to the event. Satyen from San Ramon Cricket Association (SRCA) expressed immense happiness over the amazing response to the event and pledged sup- port from SRCAmuch further in the fu- ture. He introduced SRCA team: Umesh, Ramana & Ramesh. Several dignitaries graced the occasion: Bill Clarkson - San Ramon Mayor Sridhar Verose - San Ramon Parks Commissioner Andy Li - Apapa Bay Area President Ann Marie Johnson - running for Dublin San Ramon Water Board San Ramon Mayor Bill Clarkson ex- pressed delight that San Ramon is the chosen city to host this event every year. He explained his association with the game, congratulated the winners & assured continued support from San Ramon City to this cause. The digni- taries awarded all the prizes to the win- ners. BATA/TANA/SRCA teams do- nated the funds raised to Kerala Flood Relief & Rebuild Efforts. Beena Nair representing all the local Malayalam Associations in the Bay Area expressed her gratitude for raising funds towards the Kerala Flood Relief and Rebuild ef- forts. While rejoicing the success & ap- plauding all the participating teams and supporting organizations, BATA team promised to make this event a much bigger spectacle the next year! BATA-TANA Cup – Cricket for a Noble Cause & where every participant is a winner!

non-profit ini- tiatives every year such as Volley Ball tour- nament, Cricket Cup & Bad- minton Tourna- ments to raise funds to several NPOs. He men- tioned that

BATA, TANA and SRCA collabo- rated for 15th edition of BATA-TANA Cup : A 6-over-6-aside tournament for a Cause. All the proceeds from the tour- nament were donated to Kerala Flood Relief & Rebuild Efforts. Beautiful weather & picturesque grounds welcomed the teams for the cricket marathon that started at 8AM and went until 730PM across 3 grounds. All the participating teams displayed amazing passion, enthusiasm & energy and spectators witnessed several nail biters. Finals were played under Flood Lights at the Rancho Park. Yaswanth (BATA-President), men- tioned that BATA takes up multiple

through BATA Cup, team raised over 80k to Sankara Eye Foundation (SEF). He introduced the BATATeam – Hari- nath (Vice President), Sumanth (Secre- tary), Kondal (Treasurer) & Arun (Jt. Secretary). Steering Committee : Ravi, Kamesh, Kalyan & Sireesha Advisory Board - Ja- yaRam Komati, Vijaya Aasuri, Veeru Vup- pala, Prasad Mangina, Ramesh Konda & Karun Veligeti, Cultural committee - Sridevi, Srilu & Deepti Nominated Committee - Prashant, Hari & Varun .

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October 2018

Movie Review Telugu DevDas

And coming to Nagarjuna, let me confess to my readers that I am biased. My opinion about him should be taken with a pinch of salt. I like this actor and as a result find him great as al- ways. Handsomely aged and ex- tremely sauve, he looked splendid, better than many of his younger counterparts. Nagar- juna’s facial expressions and per- formance are easy, controlled, and non-rehearsed. He avoids loud emoting. I especially liked the unbelievable expression he exhibits when Nani innocently and with conviction explains doctor-patient confidentiality. Adorable. I personally also feel Nagarjuna should be applauded for taking part in this two-hero movie and allowing equal im- portance (if not more) to Nani. It’s a rare gesture in this over- whelmingly self-centered, egotis- tical film industry where each one is looking to topple others. The music is okay, the stand- outs for me were the two songs penned by Sirivennela Seetharama Sastry. A special mention about Kunal Kapoor: Looked smashing and performed well as well! All in all, Devdas is a family friendly movie that men, women and kids can watch contently, while leaving the theater with a valuable message. I definitely recommend!

ferent in it’s the presenta- tion, humor, and love. That’s what elevates it to a superior level. This movie is surpris- ingly and unusually

clean. It bears no item songs (recall even in Baahubali we saw a semi- pornographic item song with not one, but three girls clut- tering all over each other). A huge added bonus is the lack of misogynistic comments belittling

A HUMBLE M OVIE THAT GRABS YOUR ATTENTION AND BRINGS A SWEET SMILE ON YOUR LIPS ! by Meena Yeggina Cast: Nagarjuna Akkineni, Nani Rashmika Mandanna Aakanksha Singh Director: Sriram Adittya Music: Mani Sharma My Rating: 3.5/5 Nagarjuna’s Devdas is a con- solation to watch and ensures comic solace after a long week of hard work. Some reviews refer to the second half as tiresome but the film entertains nonetheless. Ashwini Dutt as producer and Sriram Adittya as director helm a very liberating, meaningful and family-friendly movie that conveys a great message. The story is simple: Life and living is more significant than death, destruction and money. This kind of message has been the cornerstone of many other movies as well, but Devdas is dif-

or misusing women; statements denigrating castes and religions subtly; heroic Reddys, Narasimhas, kshatriya Putras dominating the scene by stroking their thick moustaches, while jumping away with nubile 18- something heroines; or cringe worthy jokes on transgenders, and physically handicapped in- dividuals in the name of humor. All actors dole out great per- formances. Both lead heroines enact the roles of working women with a mind of their own. Though brief, Akanksha Singh gives a memorable per- formance. Nani is perfect as a flag bearer of his “I am a Gold Medalist and am proud of it, ” anthem. His love for humanity comes across adorably and real- istically. I saw him last in Eega and he looks much better since then and grew a lot as an actor.

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October 2018

B AY A REANS FELICITATE G URU V ISHAL R AMANI FOR HER RECORD OF 250 ARANGETRAMS ( DANCE DEBUTS ) CONDUCTED OVER 40 YEARS !

By Ashok Subramaniam.

slaved relentlessly in order to give an opportunity to this generation to learn, follow, and take pride in our rich culture and varied her- itage. The forerunner of such ances- tors, is the esteemed dancer and the most respected, Guru Shri Vishal Ramani! The prestigious dance school she started in 1977 has been growing for 41 years, and continues to teach hundreds of stu- dents our ancient art of Bharatnatyam. This year, on July 21, she has crossed a crucial milestone. She has made a record of 250 arange- trams or dance debuts in the last 41 years. The first premiere took place in 1983, the 100th premiere in 2008. As a teacher/guru, this record

Indians who migrated to the Bay Area have slowly rooted them- selves here during the past 50 years, and are excelling in their respective fields of expertise like Science, Information Technology, etc. It is an undeniable fact that these immigrants have played a vital role in the growth of the American Economy. In general, immigrants usually bring their cultural roots along with them and ensure that it flour- ishes in the form of religion, music, dance, festivals, and so on. This unites and binds them, helping then grow into a strong community.

Today’s flourishing commu nity is the result of the hard work of our ancestors/immigrants who

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member of the Saratoga City Council Rishikumar, and Mrs. Alazhu Vairavan from Alagappa University, were the special guests who honored Shri Vishal Ramani and presented her with the plaque. Ashok Subramaniam, music director, composer, singer, head of Shrikrupa, during his speech, called attention to Shri Vishal’s involvement, dedication, exacting yet kind, and being the pioneer for many things pertaining to dance productions. For example, she was the first one to fly professional musicians from India for the arangetram season, raising the standards and expectations of an arangetram perfor- mance, and elevating her students to a professional level. Nowadays this has become typical. Thank you note was given on behalf of all parents. Mrs. Madhuri and Mr. Raja Ranganathan oversaw the organizing of the entire program. This achievement of Mrs Vishal Ramani is the achievement of all Indian descendents! Let's congrat- ulate her for overcoming these tremendous miles and wish her many more happy miles of dancing!

is not even known in India. A singer can sing up to 1000 concerts in his lifetime, a dancer can do more than 500 performances too. But as a teacher, training 250 students is phenomenal, as it requires the highest level of commitment and hard work. And unlike most teachers who stick to a regimen of old methodology, without stepping out of the boundaries of their Guruparampara, Shri Vishal Ramani teaches hand-picked, unique items, in all Dravidian languages like Marathi, Gujarati, Bengali, Hindi, Bhojpuri and other languages as well. Her stu- dents range from various provinces of India; Kashmir, Punjab, Bangladesh, Assam, Orissa, Uttar Pradesh, Bihar, Gujarat, Maharashtra, and South India. Each Arangetram is a specially tailored event, equally stressful to the parents, administrators and the organizers as well. As for Shri Vishal Ramani, each one is a challenge in every way. Every year she con- ducts not arangetrams but a yajna! It’s a dance yaj- nam, an arangetram marathon! The training starts about two years in advance. This training is not just a journey towards arangetram but each student gains faith, confidence, clarity, a thirst for aesthetics, style, and the art of engaging as well as mesmerizing the audience. The true purpose of learning any art is to develop deep focus, concentration, high ener- gy, and self expression! These are the essential elements to a successful life which is what Shri Vishal Ramani’s special training encom- passes. She is truly the queen of choreogra- phy! She creates magic with her unique teach- ing strategies and awesome choreography. Shrikrupa students not only become skill- ful dancers but also shine in every aspect of their life, ready to take on the world. They come out assertive, disciplined, compassion- ate, and empowered human beings. Moreover, Shri Vishal has created this entire social circle of arangetram parents! The Arangetram teams coordinate and work together like one big family year after year! They become great friends and now the net- work has snowballed into one amazing ShriKrupa community. They work seamlessly with unparalleled excellence like a well oiled machine. Srikrupa student Bhavya Venkataragavan, had the honor and privilege of being the 250th arangetram student. To celebrate this mile- stone, Mayor of Cuperinto, "Darsi Paul",

Srikrupa's website (www.shrikrupa.org)

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October 2018

THE EXTRAORDINARY HAPPENS WHEN YOU SPARK CURIOSITY

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