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Africa Night 2012: Cultural festival draws hundreds of students

N.A.S.O., a student dance group from Northeastern University, came to perform at Africa Night this past Saturday.




African Night is an annual semi-formal event hosted by the African Student Union (ASU). The event featured African drumming, dancing, Capoeira, African-inspired fashion, spoken word, food and more. Upwards of 300 guests attended this event and more than 100 people attended the after-party.

Carla Leroy was one performer that recited her poem onstage during the event. She described being onstage as nerve-wracking. “I always get last minute jitters,” Leroy said. “Hearing people cheer me on relaxes my nerves. It’s fun up there.” She says the poem she recited was about “being a student, a woman of color, a mother. I was writing to inspire somebody [to write].”

There were various groups dancing, playing instruments and performing martial arts onstage. One group featured ASU President Josephine Mawejje, Vice President Dumebi Odunukwe, Treasurer Jennifer Nwagbo and Secretary Maungwi Kilo dancing. Another group featured African-style drumming and dancing. Another featured Capoeira with unique instruments being played and singing in the background.

The event featured three different fashion shows, two featuring clothing and one featuring custom-made jewelry. Josefa Dasilva, an employed UMass Boston student and clothing designer, designs DMDbymimi. “I was thinking about Africa [while designing],” she said. “This [line] is all things Africa. Lots of gold, black, colors of nature, and nude colors. African clothing is not just African prints.” You can view and order some of her designs at www.dmdbymimi.com and on Facebook by searching DMDbymimi.

There were plantains, fried chicken, rice and other hot foods served during the event.

“I enjoyed this,” said CJ Perry, a part-time UMass Boston student and poet who was in the audience. “It was organized. I feel that there was a lot of passion and charisma. I enjoyed the performers on stage and them feeling the music. It is an event I’d recommend to people of all ages. It’s an event to learn about all cultures.”

After the main event, there was an after-party that went until 1 a.m. Popular hits were played and more than 100 people were dancing on the dance floor.

If you’d like to find out more about the African Student Union, you can visit their office on the third floor of the Campus Center.