Rongali Bihu in Boston

With that fervor, on April 21st, the first ever Boston Rongali Bihu was celebrated with a juxtaposition of Husori, Jhumur, and Rou Machar Tenga. It was a lovely day after the ending of a long snowy winter in New England; the festive mood was in the air. The beautiful colors and textures of 'Muga Mekhela' worn by the ladies added to the colorful gaiety of the event. People gathered in the Armenian Church in Worcester for the festivities from Massachusetts, Rhode Island, New Hampshire, Connecticut, and New Jersey,

The program started with the games such as ever-popular 'Musical chair' and 'Tug of War' ('Rosi Tona'). Darsana Barua created the Bihu banner on the backstage. Ratul Barua painstakingly made the stage wings, beautifully adorned with golden colored 'sarai'. The members of the Boston host committee started the cultural program with a song. A recitation on Gandhi by little Shawn Chowdhury, a song from the tune of the Disney film 'Mulan' by Mahika Sharma, a bihusuriya song by Ranima Datta, and a bihu dance by Brittany Chowdhury created a medley. Earlier on, these presentations and an energetic dance number by the sister and brother duo Sarada and Sandip Das, and 'Jonakare Rati' sung by Jona Rahman gave the indications about the variations of the programs to unfold and held the audience captivated. The musical accompaniment of Jewel and Bappi's team and Jewel's rendering of Bhupen Hazarika's 'Bimurta Mor Nishati' being a non-native speaker delighted the audience, while adding variety and luster to the occasion. The first half of the program was completed with an authentic husori led by Shibashish Pujari that included a 'mona', a 'sati', and a 'hurricane lamp'.

Everyone enjoyed a satirical skit on the adventure of matrimony written and directed by Dilip Datta at the second half of the program. A Karen Carpenter western favorite by Mayuri Thakuria as well as a self-composed western by Prithwi Thakuria, a bhangra 'Bol Ta Ra Ra' by Puja Sarma and Arya Mohanka, and a kamrupiya lokageet duet by Kanak Sarma and Ginima Brua graced the occasion. A beautiful dance recital of the song 'Gajagamini' by Swati Sharma was the highlight of the program. A tea garden jhumur group dance by Karavi Barua, Darsana Barua, Ankana Barua, Jayashree Gogoi, Mayashri Pujari, and Simly Das was something people remembered with fond memories.

It was not a song and dance event alone. The people present also were treated with varieties of snacks with native delicacies, lunch and at the end of the day a sumptuous dinner enriched by the inclusion of 'Rou Machar Tenga'.

It will be incomplete without mentioning the unsung heroes in the background whose selfless contributions made this event successful. This first ever Rongali Bihu celebration in Boston was made possible by the untiring efforts of Pradeep & Kiran Sharma, Ratul & Ginima Barua, Kanak & Rupa Sarma, Pankaj & Monalee Saharia, Sibashish & Mayashri Pujari, Pankaj & Karavi Boruah, Diganta & Parinita Borgohain, Deepjyoti & Simly Kakati, Partha & Joyshree Gogoi, Mobinur & Jona Rehman, Mridul Gogoi, Manjit Barman, Swati Sharma, Mahika Sharma, Darsana Barua and Ankana Barua.