Seventh annual Diwali celebration coming to Flushing Town Hall

Celebrate Diwali with Flushing Town Hall. Photo courtesy of Flushing Town Hall

Next month, join Flushing Town Hall for the seventh annual Diwali celebration full of music, dance, traditional foods and family-friendly activities.

The socially distanced “festival of lights” celebration will take place on Saturday, Nov. 6, from 11 a.m. to 4 p.m. at 137-35 Northern Blvd. The event will be in person, but is limited to 150 people in two blocks of time due to COVID-19. The festival will also be streamed live on YouTube for global audiences and for those who cannot make it in person.

According to Hindu culture, Diwali or Deepavali comes from the Sanskrit word meaning “row of lights” and has origins as part of an ancient harvest festival celebrating the earth’s fertility and a prosperous new harvest.

The day of solidarity is marked with diyas —oil-wick candles — that “illuminate streets and homes, banishing the darkness of ignorance or suffering.”

Flushing Town Hall’s all-ages dance party will feature music played by London-born, Flushing-raised Basement Bhangra musician, DJ, producer, curator and activist DJ Rekha. Attendees will also learn Bollywood, bhangra and Katak dance moves with master teaching artist and artistic director of the Srijan Dance Company, Abha Roy.

Other guests include Angela Rostick and Ling Tang who will “trade steps” in a show of kathak footwork, American tap and Chinese Tibetan tap dance, Anju Modak who will give a live Rangoli demonstration and a videotaped cooking workshop by Queens Curry Kitchen owner Nupur Arora.

The winners of the first-ever Rangoli Design Competition will be unveiled at the festival.

“Diwali is a festive time of gift-giving, charity and sharing in feasts with loved ones,” Ellen Kodadek, executive and artistic director of Flushing Town Hall, said. “We are proud to continue this tradition for a seventh year and to provide an experience that fills all senses: musical performances, classical dance, traditional food, henna painting, fashion and much more – including our first-ever Rangoli competition. We thank the Guru Krupa Foundation for its generous support for this year’s festival.”

Due to COVID, Flushing Town Hall is splitting the festival into two sessions: 11 a.m. to 1 p.m. and 2 to 4 p.m.

In-person tickets are $15 and $10 for Flushing Town Hall members and children. Tickets must be purchased in advance as they will not be sold at the door. Virtual tickets are $7 and $5 for members.

For more information and to purchase tickets, visit www.flushingtownhall.org/diwali-festival.