Turning Heads for Culture

AHS Brings Attention to Foreign Styles with Fashion Show

Caroline Lee

Staff Writer

    On Monday, February 24, 2014, AHS clubs performed in the annual fashion show, the kickoff to a week of celebrating cultures.

    As part of AHS’s International Week, two people from the eighteen participating clubs, each representing a different country, dressed in traditional clothing or in styles that depicted that country’s identity and strode down the red paper runway across the rotunda.  Senior and ASB Club Commissioner Michelle Ma was responsible for setting up the event.

    “I first asked clubs if they were interested in participating in International Week and which events they wanted to be in,” Ma said.  “For everyone that wanted to participate in the fashion show, I emailed them all the information.  I also set a deadline for clubs to give me a description of what their models would be wearing.”

    Like most endeavors, this one was not met without its headaches and struggles.

    “Challenges included communication from clubs because I couldn’t finish the MCs’ script if I didn’t have that information,” Ma said.  “Also, some clubs did drop out last minute, so I had to revise a couple of things.”

    In fact, the former–the coordination between the MCs and the organizers–caused some disapproval from students as a Japanese phrase was added spontaneously while Korea was being  represented.

    “I know that they didn’t mean to offend anyone,” Ma said.  “Although they have a script to follow, which is provided to us by clubs to ensure accuracy, the MCs’ job is to entertain the crowd and keep their attention through the use of ad-libs.  This mistake proves that International week is important to our students by exposing us to a variety of different cultures.”

    Senior Vicky Chan who represented Norway for Art Club with fellow senior Karen Ku, found the cultural education exciting and novel.

     Part of French Club, juniors Jenna Edra and Apoorva Handigol work their French attire and baguette during the lunchtime fashion show.  Though French Club has participated in previous years, this was the first appearance for many of the others.  “Every year, there are different countries being represented at the fashion show, new foods to try, and global performances to watch,” senior Michelle Ma said.  “Even though I'm a senior myself, I learn something new every single year.”  PC: Caroline Lee
Part of French Club, juniors Jenna Edra and Apoorva Handigol work their French attire and baguette during the lunchtime fashion show. Though French Club has participated in previous years, this was the first appearance for many of the others. “Every year, there are different countries being represented at the fashion show, new foods to try, and global performances to watch,” senior Michelle Ma said. “Even though I’m a senior myself, I learn something new every single year.” PC: Caroline Lee

    “I wanted to participate more in International Week because I had never done it before,” Chan said.  “It was a good first experience in a good, nervous way.  It was interesting to see people you know in clubs dress up to represent different cultures.”

    Ma is grateful for everyone who took part in the fashion show, including Aditya Joshi, Rizza Bautista, her Clubs Commission, and the Leadership class who helped her manage the event, but she still sees room for improvement.

    “I think the fashion show was a success because it was clear to the audience what was happening,” Ma said. “I didn’t hear a lot of applause, which is saddening because it takes a lot of courage for the models to walk down the runway and get on stage.  I hope that in the future, the students will be more vocal in their welcome for the fashion show.”

    Although food sales get the most excitement from students, with students pushing and shoving each other just for tickets, both Ma and senior Roger Lee, who represented Hong Kong for Asian Pacific Islander Club, admit that every part of International Week are essential in spreading cultural awareness.

    “I believe that the fashion show is integral to International Week, like the food and the rally,” Lee said.  “Culture is not defined by just food and dance; clothes are a way of life, as well.”

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