IACA organizes Atlanta Indian Idol 2023
As mellifluous strains of Bollywood music engulfed Impact Hall at Global Mall in Atlanta on October 7, 2023, new champions emerged from an abundant repertoire of talented singers at the Atlanta Indian Idol (AII) Championship presented by India American Cultural Association (IACA). Avinash Lanka, who wowed the judges and the audience with his rendition of “Kesariya” from Brahmastra secured his victory in the Adult category. Aashi S Allani, who stole everybody’s heart with her dulcet voice in the song “Khamoshiyan” from the movie Khamoshiyan, took home the crown in the Junior category.
[Left] ] Avinash Lanka wins the AII Championship in Adult category
The champions received their awards from presiding guest of honor Madan Ghildiyal, Consul at
Consulate General of India in Atlanta.
[Right] Jyotsna Rao secured first runner-up position in the Senior category.
After several qualifying rounds, twelve finalists in both categories were selected from over 81 singers. Charged with energy and melody, the four-hour program showcased singing talent from Georgia, Alabama, Colorado, Florida, Illinois, Indiana, New Jersey, Tennessee, Texas, with finalists selected from Colorado, Indiana, and Illinois.
Jyotsna Rao who sang “Bhare Naina” from the movie Ra One secured first runner-up position and Sripriya Srinivas who sang “Ghar More Pardesiya” from the movie Kalank was the second runner-up in the Senior category.
[Left] Sripriya Srinivas secured second runner-up position in the
Ananya Muni with her “Paani Paani Re” from the movie Maachis was the first runner-up and Akshitha Jagadeesan with her rendition of “Nimboora” from the movie Hum Dil De Chuke Sanam was the second runner-up in the Junior category.
[Top] Jyotsna Rao won the Popular Choice Award in the Senior category.
Dr. Raktim Sen, the program director of AII, awarded Director’s Choice Awards to Alorika Dutta (CO), Rishi Manoj (GA), and Madhuvani G Kamarajugadda (GA) in the Adult category; and Saianshi Bhatia (GA), Sharvari Bhusari (GA), Shreya Bojja (IL), and Rithvika Tabjul (GA) in the Junior category. The awards, as the title suggests, were his picks for the evening.
[Left] Aashi S Allani won the AII Championship in Junior category.
“I had never witnessed, as I did this year, the level of talent we had in the finale. Among the 12 adult finalists, five were Junior finalists in previous years and of which two were Junior champions! Two others were returning finalists, including the eventual champion. Of the Juniors, four were returning finalists from previous years! Also, out of the three judges, Asawari Gadre- Joshi and Dr. Souryadeep Bhattacharyya are previous champions. The third, Dr. Kakali Bandyopadhyay, and our statistician, Neeta Shenvi, have been with the program since its inaugural year!” Dr. Sen said.
[Right] Ananya Muni secured the first runner-up position in Junior category.
The championship engaged the audience and participants with judges who provided feedback and encouragement after each performance. Contestants were judged on various aspects of their performance including rhythm, diction, tonal quality, accuracy, and overall mastery of style.
[Left] Vidith Shastrula won the Popular Choice Award in the Junior category.
An attractive feature included the Onsite SMS polling system by TextByChoice which allowed the audience to vote for their favorite singers by texting codes attached to their names. Jyotsna Rao, the first Runner- up in Senior category, also won the Popular Choice Award in the Senior category, while Vidith Shastrula’s mellifluous rendition of “Dil Se Re” from the movie Dil Se earned him the award in the Junior category.
[Right] Akshita Jagadeesan secured the second runner-up position in Junior category.
The Judging panel included Dr. Kakali Bandyopadhyay, sitar player who has taught Indian instrumental music at Emory University; Dr. Souryadeep Bhattacharyya, a premier “Gandabandhan” disciple of the legendary sarodiya Pt. Alok Lahiri; and Asawari Gadre- Joshi, classical and light music vocalist.
The emcee for the evening Shaveta Jain, Mrs. India International, founder and co-creative director, BeTheYou, delighted the audience with her grace and charm.
In its tenth year, the organizing committee decided to dedicate the event to victims of wildfires in Maui with Melodies for Maui. A part of the proceeds will be donated to the Red Cross.
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