A promo photo for this year’s 5X Festival, which has moved to an online platform with musical performances and more.

A promo photo for this year’s 5X Festival, which has moved to an online platform with musical performances and more.

Two-day digital Diwali celebration to cap Surrey-based 5X Festival for 2020

‘Tripled engagement’ online so far this year, with MainStage event Nov. 14-15

Diwali will be celebrated differently in Surrey and the rest of Metro Vancouver this year, with some events transferred to the digital world.

Among them is the annual 5X Festival, which aims to replace in-person parties and events with virtual performances and other ways of engaging an audience during the COVID-19 pandemic.

The Surrey-based festival organizers will celebrate Diwali with a 5X MainStage event on the weekend of Nov. 14-15, online at 5xfest.com.

Diwali, also known as the Festival of Lights, is this year on Saturday, Nov. 14 — a day for Hindus, Sikhs, Jains and Buddhists to celebrate victory of good over evil and light over darkness.

5X aims to champion South Asian youth culture for ages 16 to 35, according to a bio, and has featured a flagship Surrey festival outdoors in recent years, including one in June 2019.

• RELATED STORY/VIDEO, from 2019: 5X Festival takes over Surrey’s Central City plaza.

“Over the past few months the festival has gone global and tripled their engagement with over 30k digital festival attendees versus their average 10k in-person attendees,” says a 2020 event advisory.

The Mainstage event will feature performances Kay Ray, The Sandy Lion, Avan Jogia, Pallavi Sharda, Alok Menon, BFunk, Navpreet Banga of Brown Girl Lifts and Sangtar.

The digital festival has already featured the likes of Lisa Ray, Jazzy B, Cartel Madras, Saint Soldier, Raaginder, Horsepowar, “all providing exclusive content specifically for the 5X Festival audience,” event planners say.

• RELATED STORY, from 2015:

DIWALI: Just what is it and why is it called the Festival of Lights?

The festival app, powered by the Stepathlon platform, “has provided a positive alternative outlet for so many South Asian students and young adults who otherwise have a lack of outlets during these unprecedented times. The app provides a place for creativity to bloom, encourage physical activity and to connect with other like-minded youth from across the globe.”

Launched Sept. 28, a 5X Race to the Stage app is available on iOS and Android devices through the App Store, now until Nov. 13. With 40 in-app “stages,” festival goers move around in the physical world to unlock exclusive content.

“There are approximately 210 million South Asian millennials in North America and India alone, and as we anticipate another COVID-19 lockdown, we want to unite our community beyond physical boundaries,” said Tarun Nayar, executive director of 5X Festival.

“At 5X we create safe spaces where artists can meet artists, novices can meet masters, and fans can be inspired to find their inner artist. 5X Race to the Stage is our way of taking these safe spaces to the world, and inspiring our community to stay connected and healthy during these tough times.”

Festival sponsors include City of Surrey, City of Vancouver, Canada Council for the Arts, the Government of Canada, the BC Arts Council and the Province of British Columbia.

Get local stories you won't find anywhere else right to your inbox.
Sign up here

Just Posted

Lacey, a palomino paint, is in “amazing” shape now, compared to when she was rescued in August 2015. (Leanne Peniuk photo)
BC SPCA’s horse-rescue program offers equine intervention

Book Rescue Me raises funds, awareness for animal-welfare agency

Hugh Dobbie’s South Surrey-based tech business Yare Media was recently acquired by California’s Visaic Inc. (SFU photo)
South Surrey tech company acquired by California business

Hugh Dobbie founded Yare Media in 2016, and ‘will remain involved’

Fraser Health has declared a COVID-19 outbreak at Newton Elementary School in Surrey, according to an information bulletin Friday, Nov. 27, 2020. (Image: Google Street View)
COVID-19 outbreak declared at second Surrey elementary school

Newton Elementary closed for two weeks, set to reopen Dec. 14

Joy Johnson, seen here during an installation ceremony on Oct. 22, is Simon Fraser University’s 10th president and vice-chancellor. (Submitted photo)
SFU’s Surrey campus tackling COVID-19-related research

‘We can learn now,’ SFU president Joy Johnson said, ‘so should something like this happen again we’ll be prepared. We have to learn from this current pandemic’

Keir Macdonald, CEO of Phoenix Drug and Alcohol Recovery Education Society, with the “first of its kind” Adult Residential Substance Use and Supportive Recovery Facility Homelessness Count. It was done around the time of the Metro Vancouver Homeless Count (March 3 to 4, 2020) to complement the count. (Photo: Amy Reid)
Surrey homeless, recovery counts show need for long-term solutions

This was the first time recovery, substance use facilities were included in the count

Mary Cox and Jack Plant dance in their pyjamas and slippers at the morning pyjama dance during the Rhythm Reelers’ 25 Annual Rally in the Valley Square Dance Festival in Chilliwack on June 4, 2011. Sunday, Nov. 29, 2020 is Square Dancing Day. (Jenna Hauck/ Chilliwack Progress file)
Unofficial holidays: Here’s what people are celebrating for the week of Nov. 29 to Dec. 5

Square Dancing Day, Disability Day and International Ninja Day are all coming up this week

Black Press Media and BraveFace have come together to support children facing life-threatening conditions. Net proceeds from these washable, reusable, three-layer masks go to Make-A-Wish Foundation BC & Yukon.
Put on a BraveFace: Help make children’s wishes come true

Black Press Media, BraveFace host mask fundraiser for Make-A-Wish Foundation

114 Canadians were appointed Nov. 27 to the Order of Canada. (Governor General of Canada photo)
Indigenous actor, author, elder, leaders appointed to Order of Canada

Outstanding achievement, community dedication and service recognized

Screenshot of Pastor James Butler giving a sermon at Free Grace Baptist Church in Chilliwack on Nov. 22, 2020. The church has decided to continue in-person services despite a public health order banning worship services that was issued on Nov. 19, 2020. (YouTube)
2 Lower Mainland churches continue in-person services despite public health orders

Pastors say faith groups are unfairly targeted and that charter rights protect their decisions

Cannabis bought in British Columbia (Ashley Wadhwani/Black Press Media)
Is it time to start thinking about greener ways to package cannabis?

Packaging suppliers are still figuring eco-friendly and affordable packaging options that fit the mandates of Cannabis Regulations

A big job: Former forests minister Doug Donaldson stands before a 500-year-old Douglas fir in Saanich to announce preservation of some of B.C.’s oldest trees, July 2019. (B.C. government)
B.C. returning to ‘stand-alone’ forests, rural development ministry

Horgan says Gordon Campbell’s super-ministry doesn’t work

Peter Wilson, left, and Micah Rankin, right, formed the Special Prosecutor team that was tasked with reviewing and litigating charges stemming from the Bountiful investigation. Trevor Crawley photo.
End of Bountiful prosecution wraps up decades of legal battles

Constitutional questions had to be settled before a polygamy prosecution could move forward

Alexandre Bissonnette, who pleaded guilty to a mass shooting at a Quebec City mosque, arrives at the courthouse in Quebec City on February 21, 2017. THE CANADIAN PRESS/Mathieu Belanger - POOL
Court strikes down consecutive life sentences; mosque shooter has prison term cut

The decision was appealed by both the defence and the Crown

Gold medallists in the ice dance, free dance figure skating Tessa Virtue and Scott Moir, of Canada, pose during their medals ceremony at the 2018 Winter Olympics in Pyeongchang, South Korea, Tuesday, Feb. 20, 2018. THE CANADIAN PRESS/AP-Charlie Riedel
Olympic champions Virtue, Moir and Tewksbury among 114 Order of Canada inductees

Moir and Virtue catapulted to national stardom with their gold-medal performances at the Winter Olympics in 2018

Most Read