ASU celebrates Asian Pacific Islander month with a huge show
April 14, 2009 4:15 AM
On a regular Monday night Thanh Dang would be home on Youtube or doing psychology homework. Instead she joined one of the roughly 200 people for a four hour show at Jack Adams Hall.
"The showcase was really good for the Asian community," Dang said. "Especially the music and the art which we kind of lack. We just need to step up because I feel like we are always in the shadow of other people.
Part of the proceeds will go to the non-profit 4C the Power and to the Asian American studies graduation committee.
4C the Power is an organization that provides professional artist-run workshops in high schools.
The Executive Director and founder of the organization, Diann Kitamura explains how important art is for students.
"In the 25 years as an educator one of the things that I have found is that one of the things that students feel connected and engaged in school is through the arts, music and dance."
SMASH was hosted to celebrate Asian Pacific Islander Month, which is actually in May. ASU's External Public Relations Coordinator, Jimmy Ma said they celebrate it in April because during May most students have finals and difficulty reserving Jack Adams Hall.
The Vice President of the Manalo Movement Aileen Pagtakhan said they felt it was a success because of the high turnout.
She emphasized the importance to showcase Asian talent.
"We want people of color recognized because for so long we are the background, the back-up singers, we work backstage, this is an event to help exercise how we do art,"
Ma concurred, "We are a forced to be reckoned with."
He went on to say that this years event was one of the most attended and most diverse. "This year we have a very large and eclectic lineup, bands, magicians, graffiti artist painters, designers,"
The line-up included; Far East Movement, Supreme Soul, Reynard Silva, Stevie Nadar, Dahrio Wonder, Dan San Pedro, Angel Villon, Song of the Siren, Mandeep Sethi featuring disc jockey Delrockz and was hosted by comedy duo Marc Abrigo and James Lontayao of Lexations.
One of the standout performers for the audience was Stevie Nadar.
"Oh my god, when he was singing I felt like I was in a dream trance suspended in air," said Alumni Terry Alabata.
Another standout performer was emcee Mandepeep Sethi and disc jockey Delrockz who brought with him dance crew Academy of Villains.
Throughout his performance he encouraged audience participation. "When I say hip you say hop, Hip," the crowd yells hop. "Don't," the crowd, yells stop.
"There is a lack of southeast Asian representation in the Asian community especially in the arts so I thought it was cool that they asked me to participate," he said after the show.
His thoughts were echoed by Dang who liked his performance.
"I would never image him coming to perform, because when I think of Asian I think of chinky eyes, yellow, and he comes in and I was speechless."
Among the artist featured was clothing brand Fish Eggs and Milk or F'EM which emphasizes simplicity in their designs. Some of their designs take the entire t-shirt and with a wide use of colors and photographs while others are simple geometrical shapes.
"We are trying to get people to see that there is a different way of thinking in clothing," said Robinson Nguyen of F'EM.
The last two acts of the night Far East Movement and Supreme Soul got most of the attention from the audience.
The Far East Movement's music has been featured in the film The Fast and the Furious, CSI and Entourage, had the crowd standing and dancing.
Supreme Soul had the audience saying wow with their routines.
Despite repeated warnings by the organizers to disperse the Student Center area both acts were surrounded by fans waiting to get a signed posters and pose for photographs at the end of the show.
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