2017 Multicultural Performing Arts Faire: Bigger and Better! Callie Spice
Bigger and better is the idea for this year’s Reagan Multicultural Performing Arts Faire — according to Profe Gonzalez and Madame Knight, the International Club Board of Directors. Last year, the first ever Multicultural Performing Arts Faire was held at Reagan with a goal of celebrating, educating, sharing, and showing pride of all the cultures represented at Reagan. This year, on March 9 from 5:30 p.m. to 7:30 p.m., the goal is the same but with more performances, exhibits, games, and food!
Focused on educating the students of Reagan and the community on all of the cultures of the world, the fair will be very interactive. “It doesn’t celebrate just one part of the world or one ethnicity. It celebrates all cultures. It has food! It takes place after school in the evening. It’s interactive; it’s not just a performance. Guests can come in and talk to people about their cultures,” Madame said. Food is also a big part of the fair. With the contribution of at least one nonperishable food item, guests are free to eat all the foods displayed throughout exhibits— and there are many! Each exhibit is unique and will teach guests about the cultures they may not know much about. The fair is not only educational, but fun. For activities, there will be chess, tug of war, Jiu Jitsu, Tae Kwon Doe, an African Caribbean drum circle, a piñata, and even more that you’ll have to come to the fair to see!
The fair is rooted in performance, hence the name. Before all the activities and exhibits take place, many performances are held in the auditorium representing all of the different cultures. There are performances for everybody! For those that enjoy dance, there will be a Vietnamese dance group as well as a Japanese dance. For those interested in music, there will be a rap trio, a K-Pop performance, a German song, a Spanish duet, and a Spanish solo from Puerto Rico. There will also be spoken word pieces along with other categories of performance.
The Multicultural Performing Arts Faire is an event that has been in the works for months in advance and is produced by International Club. Madame said, “International Club is the fair. We plan it, we work on it, we put it all together. It’s an International Club production.” Starting the process in January, “We start planning. Our club does a lot of it and the students just really take charge. They’re in charge of doing the exhibits; they’re in charge of helping find performances; they do all the advertising. It’s a lot of work but it’s a team effort,” Gonzalez explained. “I’m proud of the students, all the work they put into it and how they really come together to make this event happen,” Gonzalez continued.
A few of the students behind this educational, fun-filled fair are Suzy Duchac, Marian Mercado, David Rodriguez, Josie Sielen, and Joseph Sujecki. Some of the preparation that went into this was, “exploring other cultures and looking at what they offer,” Duchac said. Sielen explained this was “so people can feel included in their background to feel like they’re part of what’s being celebrated.” They all agree that a big purpose of the fair is to educate visitors on all the heritages and cultures that Reagan has to offer with a sense of togetherness. Sujecki said, “The goal is to expose the students of Reagan to other countries and heritages to show who we are as a school.” Rodriguez agreed, saying “I think the goal for this fair is to expose different cultures to our community that we go to school with everyday and possibly even more people than from our school that aren’t familiar with them.” There are many cultures right in front of our eyes that we don’t know enough about.This fair will broaden that knowledge.
Mercado said through International Club she enjoys, “the coming together of the communities, the different cultures and just getting to really know more cultures than what we already know.” Rodriguez appreciates how there will be “a bunch of different types of countries represented in the fair. It’s not all going to be around one common culture, there’s going to be different types; and there’s going to be different activities that are going to be included so it’s going to be pretty cool.”
Why should students come to the fair? There’s many reasons! Sujecki said, “Instead of sitting at home they get to get food for free! There’s going to be lots of food and tug of war, chess, and other games.” Rodriguez said, “They should come to the fair to have a good time in general. There’s going to be music and activities and a bunch of food— and you know, people like food a lot. I think that they should go because it’s just going to be a great time. Come to the fair!” Food is a “big draw,” Profe Gonzalez agreed. There is definitely going to be a lot! She said, “You can try food from all different places. We have a lot of students making food, we’re getting food from local restaurants,” and there’s also exhibits making cultural food on the spot.
Profe concluded, “Everybody is welcome. We want everybody from school; bring your parents, bring your friends, bring your outside community members. We just want it to be awesome!” You can help in making this year’s fair bigger and better than last year’s just by attending! They want even more attendance than last year and they’re ready for more guests as they expand on every aspect of the fair this year. “It’s a community coming together and celebrating all different backgrounds together. Not just your own but other people’s and recognizing these other cultures.” Sielen said. Be a part of the community and enrich your knowledge on the cultures of the world by coming to International Club’s Multicultural International Faire on March 9 from 5:30 p.m. to 7:30 p.m. for food, fun, games, exhibits and performances!