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A Citizen of the World

Adorned in the flags of foreign homes, the Jordan Ballroom welcomed those of all origins this Saturday for International Student Service’s 35th International Food, Song and Dance Festival. Focusing on the theme “Citizen of the World,” the festival pulled together students of different cultural clubs and backgrounds to embellish the international community within Boise State.

There were performances put on by several different students including a magic show by sophomore Junny Foo, an Aztec Dance put on by Danza Azteca Tonatiuh, a Nepalese folk dance by the Nepalese Student Association, and a Skit by The Saudi Club entitled “Don’t Judge.”

For Foo, despite the festival  adding stress to her already busy homework schedule, the International Festival was a chance to perform in the United States in front of a large audience for the first time, “500 viewers for a performer is really important,” Foo said.

Foo started performing in her home country of Malaysia when she was very young and has been exceeding the expectations of audiences through magic shows since she was 15.

“I saw a talent show in my secondary school and I saw someone perform magic so I decided to start performing and I love it,” Foo said.

The culture expressed previously through several songs and corresponding dances became tangible as the hundreds of attendees all gathered to try the authentic taste of dishes from seven different cultures across
the world.

The congregation of hungry culture consuming viewers was only left to mingle for minutes, before a line made of impressively dressed Danza Azteca Tonatiuh members made their way most stylishly on stage to perform an Aztec Dance. Subsequently a performance of “Henna Night”  and “Groom’s Dance” was put on by Anatolian Daisy Girls. The dance is traditional to Turkey and is part of the wedding ritual, symbolizing a bride leaving her place as a daughter and becoming
a wife.

“The main thing is practice,” said Feruza Amrulayeba, one of the Anatolian Daisy Girls dancers, “We really failed the first practice parts, so I think it’s really practice.”

Soon after, the Saudi Club commenced their skit “Don’t Judge” with a presentation explaining the importance of the Saudi Arabian tradition of kissing when you greet someone, the tradition of eating with one’s hands and the fascination with the Mustang cars in Saudi Arabia.

Although the skit lacked spoken words, the actors expressed the importance of cutting hate and lies out of your life and replacing them with love and joy.

The highlight of the evening was spoken by Angel Bustos as he marched on stage for a second time that night, giving a voice to his fellow international students.

“We want to thank you, we want to thank Boise, for giving us a home,” Bustos said.

Regardless of a student’s origin, it is indisputable that the international community at Boise State adds a simmering flavor of  culture
to campus.

Currently 2.7 percent of Boise State’s roughly 20,000 undergraduates are international students. Students who are interested in getting to know the international community of students within Boise State can join in on their “Coffee and Conversations” every Wednesday from 3:30 to 6 p.m. at the Student Diversity Center.

About Patricia Bowen (225 Articles)
Patricia Bowen is a creative writing student extraordinaire at Boise State University. Her unpaid internship experience is immense and includes a summer internship with Semilla Nueva, The Cabin, Boise Weekly and a semester internship with The Ahsahta Press. Currently Patricia works as Managing Editor for the Arbiter. While she continues into her junior year of college she plans to write more poetry about the spider infestation in her room and drink too much coffee.