News & Reviews

NYE With Many Firsts Author:DI Reporters   Posted On:2018-01-01


Bringing in 2018 at the DI

With inputs from Ashim Nandy, Pooja Sehgal & Christabel D’Gama

This was a night of firsts for the 31st – an evening with a difference.

The first thing we noticed as we entered the DI was the choice of two venues – the Bar@DI and Indoors@DI which included the Courtyard and the Lawns.  Another first at the Bar were the numbered, reserved tables and even numbered bar stools – though we saw more people on the dance floor than on the chairs!

And this was because for the first time in the history of the club we had two simultaneous venues for bringing in the New Year.  Bollywood music at the Bar@DI and Hollywood music at Indoors@DI.  And both venues were rocking all night.  The DI recognized the changing moods among members and decided to give everyone a choice of music this year.

The music was a delightful mix with live band Grooverz and DJ Austin at the Bar@DI, and live band A4 and DJ Austin alternating at Indoors@DI.  Kudos to DJ Austin who managed to serve up top quality Bollywood at one venue and classic rock-n-roll, retro dance, modern pop at the other while smoothly shuffling between venues.  The cherry on the cake was a guest appearance by our very own Shayne Hyrapiet, but more of that later.

Bar@DI Rocks to Bollywood and Bhangra

Members thoroughly appreciated the choice of music on offer and were quick to book tables and chairs at the Bar@DI for the evening.  The Grooverz, who are no strangers to our Bollywood nights, rocked the bar from the word ‘Go’ with their Hindi music selection including an amazing Mohd Rafi set, resulting in a jam-packed dance floor. Without much of a break the second session saw DJ Austin belt out Hindi and Punjabi favourites. The New Year was brought in by Grooverz on stage and much fun and excitement in the hall.

Fun and excitement was enhanced with gifts and prizes from the DI.  These included First Couple on the Floor (Mr & Mrs N Vipani), Rockstar of the Evening (Mr Ganguli), Most Sporting Dancer (Mr Dipak Vijay), Seniormost Dancer (Mr Oberoi), Mother and Daughter (Priya & Prerna Kapani).

Shayne Hyrapiet, in a guest appearance, set the floor on fire with his peppy foot tapping songs in Hindi and Punjabi.

Pooja Sehgal, a regular at the bar nights, speaks for her sizeable gang when she says, “The 31st night at the bar was absolutely fantastic, being the first time DI had organised Bollywood music to ring in the New Year.”

Hollywood goes Outdoors and Indoors@DI

There is something magical about the traditional dance on the lawns and hall of the DI which brings people from all over the world to this venue every year.  Once we collected our hats and hooters we headed into the magically decorated arena comprising the Lawns, Courtyard and Indoors@DI. Tastefully created food and drink menus on each table, abundance of coupons and fairly helpful bearers ensured a regular supply of refreshments, liquid and solid, for the night.

The evening started with MC Leslie calling everyone onto the dance floor while DJ Austin kicked off the evening with some easy-paced, music from yesteryear specially crafted for the more senior amongst us to get up and use the floor as a ballroom.  It took a little coaxing and the offer of some prizes to get the crowd on the dance floor in a couple of tracks.  After that the crowd just swelled and packed the floor, dancing to any track, fast, slow or in-between. The first prize to go out was for a Lucky Spot which was invented on the spot by the dancers themselves – Tamali Nandy won that bottle of wine! Nabeel Ahmed was the only man with brown Shoes winning him a beer which he reluctantly took and gave away!

Session two was handled by a bright, young band, A4 (another first, for them a DI NYE ball). It was received with mixed feelings as people are used to the “regular” bands on the circuit. However, the music was danceable, the speed a trifle exhausting to some, but it kept the floor crowded only breaking for a minute to give away prizes.

The Gentleman in the Striped Tie, Joshua Smith, won a beer though he looked suspiciously young for beer! Venecia D’Costa was the Lady with the Most Rings, all of 5 while a few other ladies were secretly borrowing rings to win.  Bijoy Gupta was the Only Man with White Socks.

And then it was suddenly time for DJ Austin to get back and bring in 2018.  Another first, for the DI, bringing in the New Year with recorded music instead of a band – again received with mixed responses. But it apparently worked out very well since there wasn’t enough standing room on the floor to do the Mexican Shuffle!  However, there was a little confusion with the lights not going off and Auld Lang Syne being sung a little before the midnight countdown!  But it’s the glitches that are the fond memories we recall. Wishing, hugging and kissing followed the group dances and then gave way to wild abandon as people danced the night away. 

There were more prizes.  The Lucky Card dance, in which every couple was given a card and DJ Austin drew the 9 of Spades, was won by Twinkle Anthony who walked off with a whisky. The dancer who could bring a Honda Car Key to the MC was Ashish Shah, relluctant to hand over his key in exchange for a beer!

Tarzan and Jane, a game where the guys had to run across the floor, pick up their partners and find the MC was won by two who disappeared into the jungle with the Vodka prize (we didn’t get their names).  The last contest was the Most Naturally Bald man which was won easily by Kenny Vandrine (from London) – he won another whisky.

There was a surprise from Manyavar, one of the sponsors. Their visiting representatives selected Rohit Sanyal as the Best Dressed Male, and Fiona Craker as the Best Dressed Female.  Each of them received a gift voucher for Rs 5000 from Manyavar.

Our very own Shayne Hyrapiet then took the mic and floor instead of the stage as there was tech glitch. Shayne sang some soulful ballads with a hugely admiring audience all dancing in joy.  Shayne then slipped into When the Saints Go Marching In and the dancers formed a conga line and went around the hall having a lot of fun.

A4 came back for their final session with a floor packed with people who had no intention of going home too early.  The Most Sporting Dancers were a couple of guys who enjoyed the entire show in the centre of the floor.  They were Som Chatterjee and Avishek Chakravarty and they got to share a beer.

 “The crowd was low-key compared to previous years and split up between the two locations. Bollywood was quite happening and packed though a small space,” said one of our regulars who has been coming to the DI for a long time but prefers to remain anonymous.

“Super-duper. Rocking inside and outside.” – said Carol Snelleksz, another DI regular as we brought the curtain down on NYE and the curtain went up on 2018.  A little after 2:15 a.m.

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