Last year, my roommate Devon came up with the idea of an Anything but English Night, a night where International students have the opportunity to perform in their native language and share their culture with the rest of the community. I am really happy that this is the second year it has happened, and we hope to keep it a tradition.
Unlike last year, the event took place on the third floor of our Library Building. This space is usually for intimate and cosy performances that we figured would achieving a warm and welcoming atmosphere. The night began with select international dishes made by students. They included Guacamole from Mexico, Norwegian Cookies, and Middle Eastern treats.
Performances included poetry in French, Spanish and Arabic, a Norwegian Piano song, African and Egyptian dances, and songs in Portuguese, Spanish, Thai and Chinese. The environment was upbeat and exciting, the audience cheered and enjoyed the sound of performances in other languages. A screen with an English translation was provided so that everybody could understand the general message of each piece; however, we all know things get lost in translation.
An event like this is important, not just for international students, but for the community as a whole to experience the essence from different cultures and their art.