Tamil New Year Event is always special for the SIS family since this is where it all began 27 years ago and it marks the first major event for the calendar year. With sun beaming through the clouds and temperature soaring above 20C, we couldn’t have asked for a better start to the event which was held at Canons high school, Harrow. Around 200 people attended the event and our patrons started to pour in early to beat the Wembley Rugby match traffic and the event kick started at 5.40 PM with a brief and thoughtful welcome address by Divya Sundar who also spearheaded the event emphasized the importance of ‘surrendering oneself to the Almighty God’. Bharathwaj Srinivasan rendered the soulful invocation song and we would like thank Sangeetha and Srinivasan who accepted our request at the last minute. This was followed by Panchanga padalam by our Sivasankaran mama who said overall we will be in a deficit this year (which did not come as a surprise after the Brexit!!!). The whole event was compered by Kamakshi Murali and Deepa Krishnamachari who thoughtfully took Thirukural as their reference for compering. The cultural feast began with the Carnatic vocals Katcheri by students of Harini Raghu. Audience was enthralled by the confidence at which the kids sang and performed on stage. This was followed by kids dance program ‘Four Seasons’ choreographed by Darshana Sharath using well-crafted props depicting the 4 seasons. The props used and the efforts gone in creating it and the way it was synced with the dance was much appreciated by the audience. Sowmya Shankar and her team were back with their thought provoking and entertaining sci-fi skit. They touched on different subjects like water scarcity etc., and showed how the world could possibly change in the next 30 yrs. It was well received and appreciated by the audience. Saraswathi Jaikumar took ‘Jallikattu’ as the theme for her kids dance program. The audience could relate to it well as ‘Jallikattu’ will be remembered as one of the biggest people’s movement in the recent times. It was well coordinated dance performance and efforts taken by the kids were applauded. This was followed by Bharatanatyam dance performance by Jayashree Sundaresan for ‘Thottu thottu pesa varan’ and ‘Para sakthi nadanam’. It was truly a fascinating and power packed performance and the audience was awestruck and taken to a different world by her mesmerizing dance moves and abhinayas. Team NethiAdi was back to rock the stage with their rib ticking comedy skit ‘Ivunga Vera Mathiri’ which was based on how various social issues happening back home are perceived by NRIs. Some of the sequences like ‘Partha Vizhi’ left audience in splits. The play was conceptualized and directed by Sundar Mathur and choreographed by Divya Sundar. This was followed by Carnatic vocal recital by Balakrishnan Raghavan. Audience were truly spellbound and enthralled with his beautiful rendering of popular Carnatic numbers and the way he glided through different songs starting with Maha Ganapathim and touching the western chords with ‘Gamaga riga pa’ with the accompanying artists Vijeyah Rajah Mirudangam & Dhivya Kumaramurthy on Violin were outstanding . Last skit for the evening was from our veteran Karthik Raghavan & his team. This time they came up with another hilarious comedy skit based on the present political climate in Tamilnadu ‘Chinamma Sabhatham’. The attention to detail on the customs and make-up deserves a special mention. Vishnu Vardhan and Balasubramanian Venkatraman mama sang some melodious cine numbers which kept the audience engaged between the skits.

Gayathri Subramanian delivered the vote of thanks and conveyed our sincere thanks and gratitude to our event sponsors – Life Connect, Lyca Remit/TV and IforIndia. We would also like to thank Sri Rathigas for providing a tougue-tickling sumptuous dinner. Overall it was another successful event for SIS and our patrons felt that SIS has raised the bar yet again in terms of the program quality and content and everyone thoroughly enjoyed the cultural feast. Thanks to Sundar Mathur, Ravi Srinivasa Gopalan and Krishnakumar Balasubramanian for covering the whole evening with Photos & Video. Again we would like to thank our members for their positive / constructive feedback and continued support without which this would not have been possible.