Ivorian Night showcases rich African culture

Maria Ly
Staff Writer

Students from the International University of Grand-Bassam Alumni brought the culture of the Ivory Coast to MNSU this past Saturday. 

Students and community members were welcomed to join in during the organization’s feast in the Multicultural Center to enjoy classic Ivorian dishes before heading into Ostrander Auditorium to watch an array of student performances while learning about the culture. 

Denho Jigbe, a student from the Ivory Coast, was excited to show MNSU students a taste of Ivorian culture. He said, “We came here to study but we have to promote our culture. We have an identity. As we know America is kind of a mix of culture, we want to promote our culture too, to everybody. This event is important to let people know that Ivory Coast is in America and we are happy to be here.”

Before performances, presenters, with their comedic flairs, presented each of the four cultures of the Ivorian Coast which consist of: Akan, Gour, Mandé, and Krou. 

After presenting each culture, student dancers performed the cultural dance of each section to the music of Ivory Coast. The audience roared in clapping as they watched the energetic dancers move their hands and feet to the cultural music.

The dancers brought the fun to the crowd as they pulled audience members on stage to dance with them. The dance performances ended in whistles, laughter, and uproarious clapping. 

Along with an Ivorian student dance team, there was also a slew of musical performances, specifically rappers. Student performer Gency Lunch performed his songs and turned up the crowd with his smooth bars and lyrics. 

An aspiring pastor showed the passion of religion in the Ivory Coast with a song rapped in French to show his love for God. 

The show ended with a fashion show with colorful garments, beautiful people, Ivorian inspired outfits and unique prints you can’t see anywhere else. Although the show was over, many people stayed behind just to talk and dance with one another as the music continued to play. 

Ivorian night did a successful job in bringing their culture to MNSU, a goal they worked hard to reach. General Secretary of IUGB Alumni Myriam Coulibaly said, “It’s really important for us. That’s the first time we’re doing an event like this here. We used to see African Night, Ethiopian Night, Somali Night, but there was not an Ivorian Night, that was really important for us. I felt like through the organization and stuff, we felt like home. When you come here, you’re kind of homesick and getting together and organizing such a big event, you feel just like home. We hope that students from MNSU who are not from Ivory coast really saw the Ivorian culture.”

Feature photo by Maria Ly | MSU Reporter.

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