MNSU’s Latino Night brings the heat

Songs, food and dance brought Latino spice

On Saturday, April 9, the CSU Ballroom was stylishly decorated black and silver where the Chicano Latin-American Student Association (CLASA) hosted their Latino Night. The ballroom itself resembled a magical land full of sparkling streamers, curtains, centerpieces, and glowing white palm trees on the round tables.

The event began with a professional Central American Mariachi Ensemble “Mi Terra” (My Heart) playing violins, trumpets and guitar. A speech of Dr. Henry Morris, dean of institutional diversity, strengthened a friendly atmosphere emphasizing the unity and friendship of Latin American countries.

After a couple of other beautiful song performances, guests were treated with traditional holiday meals, which included Arroz con Gandules (rice, pigeon peas and pork), Pollo Asado (marinated Mexican roast chicken), a couple of delicious souses such as Salsa Verde/Roja, and Tomatilla. Also, the dinner included traditional Colombian fruit drink with Arroz Con Leche (Mexican rice pudding).

While the guests were enjoying the food, Miss and Mister Latino contests took place on the stage. Three male and female couples were selected prior to the event among many Chicano/Latino students. Based on the couples’ performances and answers to the judges’ questions, Miss and Mister Latino were chosen and given amazing prizes.

One of the most spectacular and shamanistic parts of the event was the authentic Aztec dance by Kalpulli Ketzal Coatlicue (“Precious Mother Earth”) from Saint Paul. Kapulli is a learning community of Indigenous people “joined by the desire to learn, share and live the tradition of Aztec dance,” according to the community’s website.

The performance featured ornate feathered headdresses and beaded costumes accompanied by the ancient drum rhythms, conch shells, and high-energy footwork.

“We put a lot of effort into our Latino Night and have been practicing since September 2015,” commented the host of the event, Kevin Mitchell Camacho Rosado. “My favourite part of the night is the karaoke show contest Trompeta Del Chacal, resembling a popular Spanish-language TV show Sábado Gigante,“ said Camacho Rosado. Chacal, a person dressed in a funny costume, played a trumpet and selected students from the audience, and made them sing a random karaoke song. Based on the singer’s performance, the crowd either cheered or booed. At the end of the contest, the audience chose the winner clapping harder for the favourite participant.

Overall, the event was well organized, humorous and amazingly decorated. Invited professional singers and dancers as well as talented Latino students at MNSU captivated with their style and energy and were greatly cheered by the audience.

Photo: (Yohanes Ashenafi/The Reporter)

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