Nottingham UK: Mangalorean United Konkani Association (MUKA) celebrated Easter and 10th anniversary of the Association on 27th March, 2016 at Bramcote Memorial Hall in Nottingham, UK. To mark this event, the members of MUKA and those who reside in the UK gathered together in huge numbers. The event attracted about 300 guests.
The day began with a solemn Eucharist presided by Rev. Fr Victor Rodrigues SVD, who thanked the Almighty God for the many blessings MUKA has received in the last Ten years. He preached an inspiring homily based on the readings of the day and highlighted the significance of the resurrection of Jesus in our journey of faith. Deepak Alvares led the melodious choir, supported by the young budding members of MUKA: Jesvita Menezes, Hailey Fernandes, and Averil Alvares on the keyboard, and the melodious lead singers Conrad Aranha, Averil Alvares and Ancita D’Souza. As it was done in the previous years, the entire amount collected during the Eucharist is donated for the charity Ave Maria Palliative Care, Vamanjoor, Mangalore, an institution that takes care of the cancer patients.
The anchors of the day, John Fernandes and Melvia Dsouza formally welcomed the audience and at the same time, they called on to the stage the chief guest of the programme Rev. Fr Victor Rodrigues along with MUKA President Mr Vincent D’Souza, Vice-president Mrs Lydia Lewis, and Secretary Mr Pius Rasquinha. The programme began with the words of welcome to the esteemed gathering by Vincent D’Souza. MUKA secretary Pius Rasquinha gave the brief report of MUKA’s committed aims and services over the years. All the former Presidents of the Association were felicitated on this occasion. Fr. Victor Rodrigues was honoured at this moment for supporting the Association on this special day. In his brief address, he appreciated the unity within the group, team work, enthusiasm, and the noble works of MUKA. On this special occasion, Mr Deepak Alvares was honoured for his dedicated work for the association. The budding member, Miss Jesvita Menezes was also honoured for her extra-curricular activity, achieving the best recruit award of the RAF’s Air cadets.
The cultural programme of the day began with a meaningful 10th Anniversary celebratory song sung by MUKA members. This song is written by Lloyd Rego, Taccode, and the music for this song is composed by Jossie Veigas. The opening dance was a classical, Bollywood fusion dance by Swathi D’Souza and Hailey Fernandes. It was a great start to the programme and was enjoyed by all.
The talented young members of MUKA: Daisy D’Souza, Aiden Menezes, Ethan Alvares, Alroy Sequeira, Freya Fernandes, Aaron Aranha, Sandria Lobo, Sophia Lobo, Megan D’Souza, Erica D’Souza, Alrica Sequeira, Jesvita Menezes, Jennifer Menezes, Jaelyn Noronha, Earlyn Lewis, Jessica Aranha and Hailey Fernandes performed the song ‘Hyaa Sopnacha Somsaranth’ which was appreciated by all. The song was accompanied by Averil Alvares on keyboard and Hadley D’Souza on guitar.
The next performance was a hilarious skit `Pokri Munna’ that had the audience in fits of laughter. It was performed by members of MUKA Stany Sequeira, Jeevan Menezes, Pius Rasquinha and Flossy Fernandes.
After the short play, Megan D’Souza, Erica D’Souza, Alrica Sequeira, Sandrea Lobo, Jaelyn Noronha and Jennifer Menezes danced to a funky Konkani song: `Nachpachi Pisai’, which provided fantastic entertainment for everyone. This dance was well choreographed by Anitha Sequeira. This entertaining dance was succeeded by a melodious Srilankan song Dingis-Dinga sung by Ancita D’Souza. This was the conclusion to the first half of the event.
Our jovial anchors of the day then announced the break for sumptuous meals. The aroma wafting from the kitchen was overwhelming and everyone was relieved to taste the Mangalorean food. There were a variety of dishes. The typical Mangalorean food was served: mutton, pork bafat, dahl, vegetable jackfruit & chanasukka, rice, Mangalorean pickle and bread. For pudding, an immensely popular Mangalorean speciality ‘Vorn’ was served. The food was prepared by Conrad Aranha family, Melwin/Roopa D’Souza family, Stany/Anitha Sequeira family, Herald/Assumptha D’Souza family, Jeevan/Anitha Menezes family, John/Flossy Fernandes family, Julian/Cynthia Noronha family, Naveen/Priscilla Lobo family, Pius/Irene Rasquinha family, Vincy/Sunitha D’Souza family. Herald D’souza from Sherwood & Herald D’souza from Billborough helped us in serving the food without any chaos. The meal was enjoyed over copious drinks and many joyful conversations. Eventually, everyone settled down.
To start the afternoon session, a Bollywood fusion dance was performed by Averil Alvares, Jesvita Menezes, Shimona Pinto, Melvia D’Souza and Jessica Aranha, which was a wonderful showcase of young talent amongst the group. This dance was choreographed by Jessica Aranha. Afterwards, Deepak Alvares and Anitha Sequeira performed an astonishing, engaging duet which was adored by the crowd.
Melodious song “Valchya udkak mog daryacho” was sung by Anasuya Gomes, and “Maggie” was sung by Praveen D’Costa from Bristol. These two songs were thoroughly enjoyed by the crowd. After these songs, Lydia Lewis, Vincent D’Souza, Julian Noronha, Anitha Alvares and Naveen Lobo performed an enjoyable Konkani skit “Moinyachi Poili Tarik” written CGS Taccode, which once again had the audience roaring with laughter.
Earlyn Lewis, Elaine Lewis, Christina and Godfrey D’Souza performed a dance for Shahrukh Khan’s Bollywood Medley, which was hugely enjoyed. The storyline was well thought out and was easily followed by the entertained audience.
Finally, the performances were concluded by an extremely amusing and cheeky series of dances by Anson Dias, Deepak Alvares, Jeevan Menezes, Stany Sequeira, Pius Rasquinha, Jerald Alvares, Evan Lewis, Julian Noronha and John Fernandes. The naughty boys’ fusion dance included a special guest appearance from Roopa D’Souza, who played the role of Shanta Bai. This final performance was incredible and absolutely comical, a brilliant way to end the showcase.
At the end of the cultural events, the vice President of MUKA Lydia Lewis delivered the vote of thanks to all. As a token of appreciation and gratitude, the mementoes of MUKA were distributed to everyone. Finally, Housie-Housie was conducted by Jeevan Menezes, a dynamic committee member of MUKA, and distributed attractive prizes to the winners. The financial responsibility was efficiently handled by Naveen Lobo, the treasurer of MUKA. The day was concluded with a traditional Latin hymn “Laudate Dominum,” followed by traditional Baila dance which was thoroughly enjoyed.
MUKA would like to thank the generous sponsors for this event, especially Richard Lobo from London, he is always supportive of Konkani cultural activities, and also Kavya Silk & Sarees, Leicester. MUKA will be grateful to all our sponsors and also all the members and friends who helped to make this 10th Anniversary and Easter celebrations a great success.