Last Friday the Black History Month Committee consisting of BEASA, BUGA, and Roots African Caribbean society, the Student Justice Centre, Dem Island Boyz, Sayless Movements and Stay Woke Radio Show came together to put on Kaleidoscope.
“The event was to get people in a roo together to enjoy, to celebrate who they are. To look at aspects that do not always get showcased when discussing African History such as art and dance,” said Azuhura Msofe, President of B.E.A.SA and event coordinator for Kaleidoscope.
The committee decided to host the event in March rather than February because they wanted to make it clear to the university community that Black culture can be celebrated at any time of the year.
“It is important because we do not have enough of black excellence awards or black excellence night. Just nights that celebrate black culture. We get them in February yes, but we do not get anything before or after that. So, this event is important because it lets people know you can celebrate your roots and heritage at any time,“ said Msofe.
The night was filled with a variety of performances, music and art. There were tables set up off to the side where students could enjoy a variety of African artwork, from paintings to sculptures.
To add to the experience, an artist was stationed next to the art and was painting throughout the show, for all to see. African and Caribbean based music was played throughout the night in between performances.
The actual performances were opened up by a quick talk about Kaleidoscopes and how they represent all the different parts of African culture, and all the beautiful things about their people. There were a number of spoken word pieces, dance performances, songs and raps that were presented throughout the night with intermissions in between so guests could mingle and get to know each other. There was also a short fashion show. The royal black, Sayless movements and Unwrap and Wefted by Zhane
Marriott all presented their own clothing lines.
In addition to all the performances, awards of black excellence were given out periodically throughout the night to people that we felt throughout the years or in the recent couple of months have really stepped up in their role to lead in black excellence. This can be from planning in the background to forefront things. A total of nine awards were given out.
The event turned out to be a huge success. There was a good crowd that was engaged throughout the night.
“The event turned out to be a warm gathering of people from various Afro-Caribbean descent to share a wide a ray of colors, culture and characters that make us us, that makes us great,” said Witta Liason one of the other event coordinators
Both the performers and the students who attended seemed to enjoy the event a great deal.
“Being able to perform tonight meant everything to me. Being able to let my voice be heard as a black female on a white university campus and motivate my fellow black students was very important to me and is something I am happy wasn’t limited to black history month. We’re black and magical every day of the year,” said Shauna-gay Bowens, one of the spoken word artists.
Raquel Reid, a student who attended the event commented, “It was a wonderful celebration of the black community at Brock. As the university becomes more diverse events like these allow people of colour to feel important and valued within the community.
While the event aimed at celebrating African culture it was open to people of all ethnicities.
“It was also important to get people who were not just purely African to come out because you do want the solidarity. The support and unity with other ethnicities and groups. We all want to feel connected. Anyone who wants to come out and celebrate at these events should come out and celebrate,” said Msofe.