On a cold Wednesday evening, on February 12, 2020, and students from Sweet Home High School, along with alumni, prepared to show off their pride and hard work. All these students lead and introduced by Ms. Mansel who is a passionate Spanish teacher in Sweet Home High school. She has put a lot of work to make sure all students are able to show their passions and talents out there. Making sure that everyone is able to take pride in their culture.
The performance started off with a unique poem. Tasnia Hoque wrote the poem “Reflection” with the intention to express who she is. “Reflection, it’s about not being the girl everyone expects you to be… it’s about loving your heritage, your culture, yourself.” Many of these students are passionate about speaking about themselves through their own creative ways.
Another student who put much thought into the apparel and the presentation of her performance is Shree. She wore a bright yellow dress with beads and shining crystals attached.
“I got it from my country, Nepal,” Shree said. “I went there a couple of months ago.” Shree’s dress gave her a shining and vivid aura as she performed. Onstage, she presented herself as a beautiful and delicate flower. The craftsmanship of her dress was not easily ignored, for as she moved, the ornaments swayed to her rhythm. As the beat of the music changed so did she. Every constant second filled the room with wonder as she danced. Her love for her culture led her to perform. “At first, freshman year to sophomore year, I did it with my sister. And, junior year I decided to go solo, it’s something I love and a great experience!”
There were also other schools that traveled to Sweet Home Middle School. Amherst High School’s drill team performed four songs. “’Before Let Go’ by Beyoncé, ‘Follow Me’ by Vena, and others…” They were a little nervous. One of the girls commented, “I think it’s good to be a little nervous so you can be aware to try your best.”
In addition, the appreciation some students have for their community is shown in events like these–for example, Tashma James–she is a great leader. “I basically do what our coach does. [I] make sure they are in sync […] It’s a hard job, you can’t fail. ” Many of these students just want others to do well, even if they don’t receive the spotlight.
Everyone is unified not only on stage but behind the scenes too. Michael Territo helped set up and make sure the event ran well. He comments that clubs and events like these are good because it helps you work as a team. “Then you become friends with them.” In the end he sees Multicultural Night as something good for our communities. “It’s a pretty cool event, you see, multiple diversities coming into one, it’s just unifying.”
There are also students like Ashley, who wouldn’t miss it even if her own friend is no longer performing.
I’m still committed to watching it even if I’m alone […] I expect to see something different.