Pakistanis Shine at Irvine Global Village Festival
By Farrah N. Khan

On Saturday, September 29, 2012, over 26,000 people attended the City of Irvine’s annual Global Village Festival. Like the previous year, this year marked another milestone for Pakistani organizations joining hands to display Pakistani art and culture. The Pakistani exhibition was a combined effort of the Pakistan Arts Council, DIL (Developments in Literacy), Shine Humanity, and IPPA. The three-canopy booth displayed beautiful rillis, Multani art, woodwork, truck art and the Irvine Village Quilt.

Last year, a quilt was started by asking children to draw or write about their culture or themselves. The pieces of fabric were then assembled into a quilt for them to view this year. This year, the idea picked up momentum and resulted in the production of enough material to make two quilts that will be put on display at next year’s event.

On display in the festival are exhibits depicting over 29 cultures representing Iran, Sudan, China, Japan, Korea, Armenia and Madagascar, just to name a few. The exhibits are very interactive, inviting people to explore the art and culture of each region. In addition to the exhibits, there are over 120 performances on three stages. At any given time, you may find yourself watching a classical Korean dance on one stage, a Reggae performance on the second stage or a colorful Aztec performance on the third stage. Besides the cultural aspect of the festival, there is a World Religions tent and stage that offers insight into the multitude of religions practiced in Irvine. On the World Religions stage, you can observe chanting, meditation, choirs, and for the first time, an interfaith children’s performance by First Drops. But nothing is complete without a fantastic food line-up and the Kids’ Village.

(The author, Farrah N. Khan, has been on the steering committee of the Irvine Global Village Festival for the last three years.)


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