AsianFest brings culture, dance to BU

Students participate in the Asian Students Association's annual culture show, Asian fest on Friday, November 9, 2012 in Waco Hall.  Sarah George | Lariat Photographer
Students participate in the Asian Students Association’s annual culture show, Asian fest on Friday, November 9, 2012 in Waco Hall.
Sarah George | Lariat Photographer
By Ada Zhang
Staff Writer

The annual AsianFest, hosted by the Asian Students Association, will celebrate Asian traditions this weekend along with the achievements of Christine Ha, season three winner of MasterChef.

The AsianFest Culture Show starts at 7 p.m. Friday in Waco Hall. The second part of Asian Fest, the AsianFest Banquet, starts at 7 p.m. Saturday in the Bobo Spiritual Life Center.

Houston senior Angeline Nguyen, president of Asian Students Association, said AsianFest promotes not only Asian culture, but also Asian-American culture.

“It gives people the opportunity to see what our community is like,” Nguyen said.

The show will be a mix of cultural dances, modern dances and individual performances, said Houston senior Chao Truong, Asian Students Association secretary.

Truong said the show will be about two hours long. It is open to the public and free.

Other organizations from Baylor that are participating are the Vietnamese Students Association, Filipino Students Association, Japanese Students Association, Indian Subcontinental Students Association, Taekwondo club, Baylor Latin Dance Society and dance groups Sornum Taal and J Squared.

Truong said the Vietnamese Students Association from the University of Texas at Arlington will also be performing.

“J Squared is dancing to K-pop and is made up of students from ASA and VSA,” Nguyen said. She said Sornum Taal is a dance group that fuses hip hop with traditional Indian dance.

Truong said Vietnamese Students Association will be performing a traditional Vietnamese dance.

“We’re going to use scarves and traditional Vietnamese hats,” Truong said.

She said Vietnamese Students Association has been rehearsing this dance once a week for the past two months. Students who attended the show last year will not be seeing the same performance from the organization.

“We change up our dance every year,” Truong said. “Last year was different.”

Houston senior Kha Phi, vice president of Filipino Students Association, said the organization has prepared a cultural dance as well as a modern one. The cultural dance is a Filipino folk dance called Pandanggo Sa Ilaw.

“The dancers balance and carry candles while they’re dancing,” Phi said. “It’s supposed to be symbolic of fireflies. ‘Pandanggo’ comes from the Spanish word ‘fandango’ and ‘sa ilaw’ means ‘in light.’ And so it basically means ‘dancing in light.’”

Phi said the modern dance is a routine set to contemporary hip hop and house music. Genres of dance will include hip hop, house music and some breakdancing, Phi said.

The Filipino Student Association has been rehearsing these performances since the beginning of the semester, he said.

Right after intermission there will be a Miss AsianFest pageant, Nguyen said. Women from the Vietnamese Student Association, Filipino Student Association, Asian Student Association, Asians For Christ and Asian-interest sorority alpha Kappa Delta Phi will represent their respective organizations in this pageant.

The festivities continue on Saturday with a banquet. Christine Ha, season three winner of MasterChef, will speak at this event. Truong said Ha was chosen to speak because she has made an impact in the Asian-American community.

The banquet will last two hours, Truong said. It is open to the public, but those who wish to attend must pay a fee.

“Tickets for the banquet are $10 for students and $15 for general admission,” she said.

Tickets are available for purchase all week in the Baylor Sciences Building. Truong said the banquet will be catered by Panda Express.

“Recipes from my Home Kitchen,” will be available for purchase and autograph after the event.