The ‘Music City of the USA’, Nashville witnessed a magnificent celebration of Bengali heritage and traditions this summer at the Regional Bengali Conference which was hosted in Tennessee, a southern suburb of Nashville, USA from 16th to 18th July, 2010. The first ever “Ancholik Banga Sammelan 2010” witnessed the coming together of approximately 3500 multi-cultural attendees including 1500 affluent professionals with roots in Bengal who enjoyed a cultural fusion of activities from the rich cultures of Bengal, Bangladesh and the contemporary culture of the USA. To give the people of USA a true taste of their motherland, a group of extremely talented and popular artists from Bengal and Bangladesh participated in the three-day conference and they entertained those away from home by their scintillating and extraordinary renditions. This initiative resonated by some of the Regional Bengali Conference 2010 artistes who were present at the conference such as actor Indrani Dutta, renowned Bangla Rock Band Fossils, singers Raghab Chattopadhyay, Sounak Chattopadhyay, Shama Rahman, national award winning director Aniruddha Roy Choudhury, noted industrialist Satyam Roy Chowdhury of Techno India Group and writer Bithi Chattopadhyay.
The main objective of the Regional Bengali Conference 2010 is to invite and engage the thoughts and perspectives of the younger generation of Bengalis living in the USA to help them connect with their authentic roots. This dynamic event promoted cultural exchange through arts/craft, music, theatre, dance, literary works, photography and movies. To make this celebration even more memorable and joyous distinguished singers such as Babul Supriyo, Lopamudra Mitra, dancer Sukalyan Bhattacharya, theatre personality Ramaditya Ray, Biswajit Chakraborty performed at the conference to give everyone present a feel of Bengal. Eminent writer Sunil Gangopadhyay also graced the occasion.
The three-day conference consisted of a number of events like Woh Sham Kuch Ajeeb Thi, a dance performance by renowned actor Indrani Dutta which was a tribute to the golden era of Hindi music, solo performance by Babul Supriyo, Nrityo Geeti Alekho (song drama) by the versatile actress Indrani Halder, recital of Bangla gaan by Lopamudra Mitra, rocking performance by Bangla band, Fossils. Besides the bouquet of such cultural performances, the event also witnessed the screening of Antaheen, national award winning Bengali feature film interspersed with dialogues from its director Anirudha Roy Chowdhury.
The Regional Bengali Conference 2010 also served as a forum to facilitate business ideas and ventures between Bengal and the USA apart from cultural exchanges. The event had important personalities from Tennessee’s Chamber of Commerce, Congress and the Senate. Distinguished researchers, professors, doctors, business owners and executives of multi-million dollar companies also formed part of the audience at the conference. The general audience consisted of well-educated and affluent Bengalis primarily along with people from other ethnicities.