DALLAS, Texas: In a show of overwhelming support to Telugu Association of North America (TANA)’s 19th Convention in Dallas (first time), more than 600 people turned up at the kick-off for the fundraising event held at Lindero Ranch in Irving.
Telugu Association of North Texas (TANTEX), the local Telugu Association is co-host of this convention. Manjulata Kanneganti, TANA South West Regional Representative, welcomed the gathering and spoke briefly about TANA activities.
Prasad Thotakura, TANA President in his opening remarks mentioned that in it is for the first time in 35 years of history of TANA that the 19th TANA Convention will be held at Dallas Convention Center from May 24-26, 2013 (Memorial Day Weekend).
Also addressing the meet were former TANA Presidents Dr. Navaneetha Krishna Gorrepati, Dr. Raghavendra Prasad and the current TANA Board of Trustees Chairman Dr. Chowdary Jampala. It was announced that Dr. Navaneetha Krishna Gorrepati will serve as Convention Chairman and Dr. Raghavendra Prasad Convention Advisory Council Chairman. Also introduced were more than 30 people Convention Advisory Council members.
Several donors came forward with contributions ranging from $10,000 to $25,000 for the success of the convention. Dr Raghava Reddy announced $50, 000 on behalf of his close friends Dr Premsagar Reddy and Dr Pailla Mallareddy. Chalapathi Rao Kondrakunta announced a total of $75,000 on behalf his family and friends Leelakumar Kaza and Seshagiri Rao Battula. Manju Kanneganti announced $25,000 from his family. The attendees have risen to the occasion and have given over $618,618 – a record amount, by the end of the evening. Prasad Thotakura, Murali Vennam and Dr. Chowdary Jampala have thanked the entire Dallas Telugu community.
The attendees were treated to excellent classical dance performances – Tribhuvani, Kuchipudi Fusion by Kuchipudi Kalakshetra under the tutelage of Padma Sonti, Raasa Kreeda by Natyanjali Kuchipudi Dance School under the tutelage of Srilatha Suri. Showcasing further the younger talent of Dallas, the Blue Flame Dance Group performed Tollywood Mix trained under Nirmitha Shukla and Yogitha Manduva. Tollywood Heroine Pranita attended as a special guest.
Riveting and lilting songs were performed as a part of musical entertainment by Sarada Akunuri, an accomplished singer and current President of Telugu Cultural Association, Houston. She was joined by several local singers. Dr. Alla Srinivasa Reddy’s performance of rural folk songs transported the audience to the memories of rural Andhra Pradesh. Suresh Vuluvala entertained with his amazing mimicry acts. Chandrahas Maddukuri and Udayagiri Rajeswari did an excellent job as Master and Mistress of ceremonies.
A vote of thanks was proposed by Murali Vennam.