Worldly sounds, performances take over Union

Alex Seidler, Staff Reporter

The “Sounds of the World,” hosted by the Association of International Scholars, provided dancing as much as music and games throughout the night on Friday in the University Ballroom of the Martin Luther King Jr. University Union.

Ahmed Salim Nuhu, the secretary of AIS, said the purpose of an event like “Sounds of the World” is to bring people together and give them a taste of a variety of music around the world.

The event consisted of group singing, group dancing, solo singing, solo dancing and games with prizes. Students performed music and dances from cultures like Saudi Arabia, India, China and Pakistan.

All the tables contained three to four different country flags and performers came dressed in their cultural clothing.

Nuhu hosted games such as Spoon and pingpong, nose diving, burst the bubble and musical chairs. Spoon and pingpong involves racing from one side to the other holding a spoon in one’s mouth while balancing a ping-pong ball on the spoon.

Vijay Shekar Reddy Toom, a graduate technology student, won both of the games.

“I’ve never been in any program like EIU’s and to see many people together like this makes me happy,” Toom said.

Divya Kumar, a graduate student, danced solo to “Bharata Natyam,” an Indian classical, and a group dance performance with a Bollywood style.

“I did this last year and we got a huge crowd response, which encouraged us even more to do it this time,” Kumar said.

Ernest Echefu, a graduate student, came in second place in musical chairs.

“I think this event was better than last year because it was more lively and more people participated from different countries,” Echefu said. “I wish we could do it more.”

Throughout the event, drinks and snacks were provided; the winners received prizes ranging from bags, caps, writing pads, a candy jar and other souvenirs.

Rahul Lotla, a graduate student, said the event provided him with different cultural music and dances.

“All the people from the cultures make it feel alive,” Lotla said. “My favorite was the Indian girl’s performances because it gave me pleasure to listen and watch them dance to their cultural music.”

Ariannah Lambert, a senior biology major, said the event opened her to different kinds of music she can listen to.

“I wish more people from my ethnicity would come,” Lambert said. “It makes me love the music they listen to because it is not something I have on my playlist so it’s not something I normally listen to.”

Each performance during the night was met with a positive response from the crowd.

Xueting Sun, graduate business administration student, played her instrument called Hulusi. Sun has been playing the instrument since she was in middle school.

Sun performed with Martina Karmakar, a graduate business administration major, alongside her.

“I feel like people can know my culture and I can know others through this event,” Sun said. “There was more dancing than I thought there would be.”

Jamol Abdiev, a graduate student, said events like this would make a difference in Eastern’s society.

“The music creates love and peace,” Abdiev said. “You feel it with your deep soul and it makes us love each other. Music is such a miracle that you don’t need to understand it.”

Shraddha Shrestha, the president of AIS, also performed in the event.

“I was a boy in the dance,” Shrestha said. “It was fun being a boy for seven minutes and I was in our national dress Daura-Suruwal and Dhaka topi.”


Alex Seidler can be reached at 581-2812 or [email protected]