On Jan. 26, International Club conducted its annual International Fair flag parade and talent show in Kresge Recital Hall. The event featured
students from different backgrounds coming together to take pride in their nationalities.
I-Fair is an annual celebration of the different cultures Knox’s student body represents. Kresge was completely packed as students, teachers, staff and Galesburg residents occupied every seat. Many people were forced to stand in the back to watch the show. This year, the show was dedicated to Tundun Lawani ‘14, who passed away after a hit-and-run incident in the fall, giving the show a much more personal touch.
The show began with the flag parade. Students entered the theater one by one carrying flags of the countries they represent. Inspirational music played in the background as flags waved past the audience’s heads. Select students then welcomed the audience to Intermatonal Fair in the native language of their respective countries.
When asked why she had decided to participate in the flag parade, sophomore Anna Karwowska said, “Last year, I feel like they just chose some random dude to represent Poland, and my parents are from Poland. So, I figured I would do it this year and I’d be proud of the position … and I can speak better Polish than the last guy did.”
I-Fair’s annual talent show included mainly dances and songs originating from the country of the performers’ heritage or their home country. Many clubs and individuals performed in the show, sharing their talents.
One of the clubs that performed was the belly dancing club, the Oriental Hipsters. When asked how she had developed her talent, senior Kyla Tully, one of the leaders of the group, said, “I lived in Colombia in South America for two years, and that has a big Arab population, funny enough. So I lived at a dance school for six months and studied intensely belly dancing there.”
Sophomore Adrita Burman sang and played a Punjabi song with her guitar and later participated in a dance that she choreographed with friends. Burman has been dancing and singing since she was a small child, having learned both skills from her mother, a dance teacher. It was not until high school that she taught herself how to play guitar.
“I always wanted to do a solo song on stage because I usually perform with [sophomore] Ayesha [Ismael Fariz] … it was a Hindi song, and one of my favorite songs,” she said.
Burman considered choreographing a dance in last year’s I-Fair, but as a freshman, she wanted to see what it was all about. This year, she was encouraged to choreograph a dance by another student.
“Knox is a home away from home. There are so many cultures. You feel closer to home because there are so many cultures and then your own country’s culture is being portrayed. It’s really nice,” Burman said.