This article was written for The Telegraph, India, and can be viewed online here
In the UK colleges and universities do sometimes compete against one another in sporting events, but not on the same scale as t2 Festopolis 2017 – and there is certainly never a Pulsar NS 200 up for grabs as the ultimate prize! I was definitely blown away by the sheer amount of talented young people here in Calcutta after witnessing the first day of the competition.
In the Fitness Mania round, watching people doing that many push-ups definitely made me feel slightly guilty about the fact I am allergic to going to the gym. I found it really interesting that the girls and boys were judged as one category, whereas in the UK they would almost certainly have been judged separately. As it turns out, they don’t need judging separately – one of the female students had a better sit-up technique than the majority of the male competitors!
After that, the judges were hard pressed to select winners in the 3 Minutes of Fame round; from vocal mash-ups of Western and Easten songs to speed painting, from card tricks to mimicry, there were a lot of unique and exciting talents on show. Some of my favourite performances were the various beat-boxers, and the student who performed tricks with a football.
There were a lot of talented dance acts throughout the day, but I found my thoughts plucked right out of my head by the judge who observed that it would’ve been nice to have heard more variation in the music the choreography was set to – as it turns out there is only so many times one can listen to ‘Shape of You’ in a day (sorry Ed Sheeran).
Out of the dance acts in the Hot Stepper round, I really enjoyed the group dance performance on the theme of ‘patriotism’, where the six dancers wore green, white and orange in accordance with the Indian flag. It was clear that a lot of thought had gone into the aesthetic aspect of their routine. Other groups were decidedly less put together, but they still had fun dancing with their friends, and at the end of the day that is what Festopolis is all about!