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Annual cultural festival of NIT Trichy, Festember 2014


Annual cultural festival of NIT Trichy, Festember 2014

Festember sunburn Festember sunburn1

The ever glistening annual cultural festival of NIT Trichy, Festember, kicked off for the year 2014 in its traditionally star studded construct. The fashionable affair started off with a bang on 25th September’14 with the official inauguration of the festival. Graced by the presence of leading Kollywood actor Prasanna Venkatesan, the ceremony was quaintly started with a prayer recitation followed by speeches by the dignitaries including the Acting Director, Dr. M Punniyamoorthy, Faculty Advisor Mr. PJ Alphonse, and the Festember’14 Chairman- Mr. Cibi Pranav.  The beloved Director Dr. Sundarrajan gave his customary words via video. Among the dignitaries, were two alumni Mr. Mahalingam Krishnamoorthy, CEO of TSM group of companies and Mr. Shyam Vembar, Vice President of Mahindra&Mahindra. In a fit of happy reminiscence, they swirled the crowd with stories from the past, of the changes, and more so, similarities between the organization of the Fest. The entirety of the students and the two guests seemed as one unit, bound by a shared feeling of ‘NITT-ism’.

Keeping up the theme of nostalgia was the actor Prasanna who quipped in anecdotes of his past  – his days as a participant, and returning to old stomping grounds, over at NIT Trichy.

The ceremony also included the unveiling of ‘Unheard Stories’, Festember’s social responsibility wing, Festember Social Responsibility’s magazine that is aimed at greater recognition of NGOs.

Following the opening ceremony, fusion violinist, Karthik Iyer and his band took to the stage to dazzle the audience with his deftly created, enchanting tunes – an eclectic blend of traditional Indian sound and world music.

The conclusion of the ceremony set the stage for the coming 3 days of the most action packed events in South India.


The second day of Festember was filled with a veritable treasure trove of events, workshops and competitions.


The Tamil Lits were kicked off with Kootralambalam, the Street Play. This were organized by Tamil Mandram, the official Tamil Language club of NIT-Trichy. Over 150 participants from many colleges enthralled the crowd with their mind-blowing performances. The finals were a tight contest but the Government College of Technology, Coimbatore proved their superior skills to the audience, taking home the laurels.


A Hindi extempore was organized by the Aayam club of NIT Trichy at the EEE Auditorium. The event was judged by Mr. Santosh Mishra, Hindi Officer, BHEL, and Mr. Naveen Rajpal and Dr. S. Yogi, professors from the Department of Humanities, NIT Trichy.


Carpe Diem, guest lectures by famous celebrities across the country, sponsored by Bru, was held at the EEE Auditorium.


The lectures were inaugurated by Padmashree Dr. Ananda Shankar Jayanth, a famous dancer who survived cancer with strength and determination. Now a railway officer, she gave her lecture about making choices, strength of mind, and the positive outlook of life no matter what the situation. The lecture, a perfect mix of inspiration and humor, ended with a standing ovation from the crowd.


Following her lecture was Padma Bhushan Jatin Das, an artist and sculptor. He spoke about the changes in Indian Culture, and about bridging the gap between art and science. The lecture ended with the Chairman of Festember, Mr. Cibi Pranav,  presenting a sketch of Mr. Jatin Das, drawn by NITs very own students.


Soon after, The Mentalist, Aravind Jayashankar, mesmerized the audience with his illusion skills at the Barn Hall. With the help of various volunteers from the audience, he displayed various tricks that were quite different from conventional magic shows. Every trick ended with a roaring sound of applause from the audience, and an even louder one at the end of the show.


The pyrography workshop, conducted by Dr. Rajah Balakrishna, was a fun experience to the participants. He taught the art of wood-burning in his simple style and the participants designed and engraved the patterns into the wood boards.


There was also a parkour workshop, conducted by the newly started Tamil Nadu Parkour Foundation which was a resounding success, with there being more than 80 participants from multiple colleges. The participants were put through a grueling obstacle course where they learnt techniques like touch jumps and vaults. The organizers then spoke about how parkour was an emerging art form.


The Choreo nite then took place in the Open Air Theatre. A total of seventeen teams, both eastern and western, participated in the competition. The choreo nite showcased extraordinary talent and hard work, enthralling the audience with the fast beats and coordinated movements. Amongst the 5 eastern teams, the one that stood out was the performance by Kumaraguru College from Coimbatore, eventually winning the eastern choreo title. The western category faced more competition with 12 of the best teams from South India fighting for the title. The men in checked shirts from DG Vaishnava College won the title for the best western team with their amazing choreography and synchronization.

The same night also saw Sunburn DJ Candice Redding set the stage on fire with her electrifying tunes, at the massive OAT. The moment Candice took the stage and began playing in the dazzling stage lights, the entire atmosphere inside the OAT erupted with euphoria. Candice Redding is the first ever international DJ to play at Festember, and the event is the first of its kind to be held in the campus. Overcoming all odds, the audience was constantly dancing to the songs she played, some of them being ‘Mammoth’, and ‘We Came, We Raved, We Loved’. The event ended at 3 am in the morning, only because the students were far too tired from dancing throughout the night, despite Candice pumping the energy levels as much as possible.


All in all, the second day of Festember was a well-designed success.


The third day of Festember saw the continuation of the first ever guest lecture series in the fest, Carpe Diem. The first speaker, Kaneez Surka, is India’s first female improv comedian. Currently a cast member on Cyrus Broacha’s critically acclaimed show ‘The Week That Wasn’t’, she gave a lecture on her life, her experiences as a comedian, how working in a team and saying “yes” is important, and how sometimes not making plans is the right decision. The lecture ended with a question-answer session and the director Dr. S. Sundarrajan presented a memento to Ms. Surka.

Later in the afternoon, the second guest lecture of the day was conducted by Alicia Souza and Anu Sridharan at the EEE Auditorium of the campus. Alicia Souza is a designer, illustrator, and entrepreneur, and is the co-founder of Chumbak, an online shopping portal for products with unique Indian designs. Anu Sridharan, an entrepreneur, is the founder of Next Drop, a company that aims at solving water issues across the country. With great chemistry between them, the two delivered an informal lecture, making the audience interested and at the same time comfortable. With great enthusiasm and interest from the audience, the two spoke about taking passions as professions, about the challenges in entrepreneurship, about accepting failures and overcoming them, and about saving money for exploring new ideas and future development. The lecture ended with a question answer session with the best three questions getting goodies brought by the two speakers. They were then given mementos by the Festember chairman, Cibi Pranav.

A pottery workshop was then conducted by a professional from Bangalore which was a major success. The rate of production of pots was really high, with a pot being made every two minutes. High tech tools including a motor running at 600rpm were used. There were about 70 participants throughout and all of them got to take their handmade work with them.

The finals of Rochak Mantrana, the flashiest Hindi lit event of Festember were held next. The final year students of NIT Trichy emerged out to be the winners of the event. The second place went to Ethiraj College for women and the third again to NIT Trichy.

The up and coming director, Ms. Madhumitha, with her brief yet overwhelming experience in the industry held the crowd enraptured in her anecdotes during the Screenplay Workshop held on the same day. Six years of work experience where she has met both Johnny Depp and Rajnikanth.  And the result was a feast to the fest. 83 students walked in as amateur enthusiasts and left the hall with at least a doubt if they could actually make it to the screens with their voice and pitch their story to their favorite heroes.

The short film contest ‘Showtime’ was then conducted by the Frappe Society of NIT Trichy. From the various entries by different colleges, each of them stood out with either a social message or a story on a humorous note. The judge, Ms. Madhumitha, found it difficult to adjudge the best amongst the entries. ‘The Cecity’ by won the title for the best short film with the story of a blind man with dreams of living a luxurious life. ‘Imagination creates vision’ was the message conveyed by the film. ‘Whatsapp Kadhal’, a humorous story on modern day romance and texting won the runner up title for the event.

The evening of the third day saw crazy headbanging at Gig-a-Hertz. The competition had 7 bands participating in it. The semi-professional bands rocked the stage and there was a good turnout in the OAT. While the first prize was bagged by “What’s in a Name”, the second place ended in a tie between Dark light and Beta Function. The best guitarist title was given to the lead guitarist of Rockazaurus.

The fourth and final day of Festember started with Theatrix at the EEE Auditorium and saw 7 teams participating in it. The event was opened with the Thespians’ Society performing 2 plays. The judges for the event were ex-Thespians’ Society presidents, Saran and Gouri. The winners of Theatrix were VIT Vellore followed by Sastra in second place. The best actor title was awarded to VIT Vellore.

Another highlight was “Vaad Vivaad”, the Hindi debate. The teams were all given the same topic,” The effectiveness of laws for minors-should they be toughened or made lenient?” Many views were brought forth and contested by all those involved, and quite a few interesting conclusions came to light.

The Valediction Ceremony then took place in the OAT. Emotions were high as it was time to close what had been an amazing four days. The respective heads gave their speeches and got ready to end it all with the best part of Festember yet.  The valediction was followed by an awe-inspiring performance from the lovely Shakthisree Gopalan, who had the crowd dancing from the go with her beautiful music. She gave the perfect opening for an energetic dual performance by the renowned Vishal Dadlani and Shekhar Ravjiani. The power packed performance of the duo lasted for more than 3 hours and they made sure that the NITTians enjoyed every last second of Festember. The proshows marked the end of Festember ’14 and with much reluctance, everyone began to accept the fact that Festember was over. A final few goodbyes were said and sights set on making the next Festember bigger and better.

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