A Journey Through Time And Vietnam
Published: Sunday, March 17, 2013
Updated: Monday, March 18, 2013 00:03
The Heights room was abuzz with excitement on Mar. 16. The Vietnamese Students Association (VSA) had their fifth annual culture show that marked their 12th year of existence as a club. Needless to say, it was a monumental point in their history, and it was only fitting that they titled their show A Journey Through Time.
The show truly showed the hard work and dedication that the executive board and the members of the club had put forth to make this show a reflection of the rich and fruitful Vietnamese history—past, present and future. It also showcased how VSA had come so far in their history at BC, and how they’d used their club to unite students from all different backgrounds, both Vietnamese and non-Vietnamese.
The show started at 7 p.m. when the doors were opened and the BC community had the opportunity to come inside, go to the photo booth for fun pictures, and play games in the back room. Attendees then went to the show in the main room that started at 8 p.m. Ha Che, CSOM ’15 and Kelly Le, CSOM ’13 the culture chair and the president came out for introductions and a welcome to the audience. Fittingly, they addressed both the English and Vietnamese audience, speaking in both tongues. Then Mai Hoang, a freshman representative of the association, came out to beautifully sing the national anthem, the first official act of the show.
After the national anthem came the native dance, which showed the beginning of the Vietnamese culture and how the vibrant culture was started. The interpretive dance followed, showing the Chinese influence on Vietnamese culture. In both of these dances, stunning girls in long flowery dresses went up on the stage to enthrall their audience with both dignity and beauty, showing the grace that the Vietnamese culture has embedded into their daily lives.
The show slowly became more modern as acts like the Hat Dance and Student Dance showcased the development of flirtation between males and females that emerged over time. These passionate dances symbolized the youth and vibrancy of the new generation of Vietnamese youth.
VSA then asked the Chinese Lion Dance to come up on the stage and perform. Sophia Trinh, A&S ’15, the AHANA Caucus representative said that their reason in doing this was to celebrate the influence that the Chinese had had in their culture as well as to wish the audience good luck and great fortune. It was a gratifying experience, to see the inclusive nature that VSA displayed with this act, a theme that resonated all throughout the show and into the night. It showed how VSA, as a community, is truly a welcoming one with respect and admiration for everyone who chooses to participate in the community.
The show then became more modern-day and picked up the pace of rapid success that Vietnam has experienced and would like to experience in the future, with dances like the umbrella, ballroom, and modern dances, as well as modern couples, girls, and boys. It was a great way to show the vibrant nature of the Vietnamese culture. Also, by both sexes being equally represented in the dances, they showed that the contributions of both men and women are valued to make the Vietnamese culture what it is today.
In the midst of all these acts were multiple giveaways, E-board introductions, and the skit. In the skit, Thinh Nguyen, CSOM ’15, played the dashing male protagonist who showed the beautiful way in which the Vietnamese culture advocates the boy getting the girl. Kimberly Nguyen, A&S ’13, showed that these relationships clearly take time and active pursuit because she doesn’t give in so easily. Through this dynamic, VSA showed that the Vietnamese culture is one of persistence, that even when the going gets tough, they don’t give up but instead pursue what they want with even more passion than ever.
The highlight of the show, though, was not the acts, the giveaways, the introductions, or the skit. Instead, it was the time between the modern sets that VSA set aside in order to honor their seniors. Each senior was called up to the stage and was honored with a flower and the reason why they joined in the first place. The overall consensus was that VSA had given them a home, a place of rest, in which they could find community and peace inside the larger BC crowd. Through this act of honoring their seniors, whether they’d joined as freshmen or as seniors, VSA embodied the idea of unity and willingness to embrace all. They exemplified the fact that Vietnamese culture is not only limited to itself but is made up of the people who choose to work to contribute to it, Vietnamese or not.
The VSA culture show ended with a finale of a medley of dances, having all the performers come up at the end to finish it. Vice president Eric Phung, CSOM ’14, came out to thank the audience for coming and to direct them to refreshments of Banh Mi and fried rice that the members had prepared. Overall, it was a satisfying night of fun, performances, and food that showed not only the beautiful Vietnamese culture but also the enveloping nature of VSA as a whole.