Friday, September 29, 2023

Spartan Remix showcases campus culture at Breslin Center

September 15, 2023
Ballet Folklorico de la Luz, a folkloric group from Central Michigan University, performed traditional Mexican dances at Spartan Remix on Sept. 13, 2023 at the Breslin Center.
Ballet Folklorico de la Luz, a folkloric group from Central Michigan University, performed traditional Mexican dances at Spartan Remix on Sept. 13, 2023 at the Breslin Center. —
Photo by Alexis Schmidt | The State News

From ethnic identity to electric violin, a variety of cultural clubs and performances were present Wednesday night at Michigan State University’s Spartan Remix. 

“[Spartan Remix] is really intimate, you could find a family here,” Spartan Remix Student Coordinator and human biology senior Chiffa Abdalla Hassan said.

Spartan Remix was initially scheduled to take place outdoors but was postponed for a week due to thunderstorms. According to graphic design senior and event coordinator Daveeda Fitih Turner, this resulted in a lower turnout, but she’s happy the event was still able to take place.

“I’m not gonna lie, if it was just us working on this, it would have not worked at all,” Fitih Turner said. “But the fact that everyone was willing to come together, understand that weather is not something we can control and come out to really represent themselves is a blessing.”

For students like premedical sophomore Jalilah Carson, the rain did not keep them from joining in the fun. 

“It was just eye-opening, a fun experience,” said Carson. “I learned a lot about the different organizations and clubs that I look forward to being a part of.”

Members of Alpha Kappa Alpha, the first sorority for African American women on the MSU campus, pose around their booth at Spartan Remix on Sept. 13, 2023.

Carson plans to join Successful Black Women and the MSU Black Students’ Alliance after finding them during the event.

Hassan said the event solves problems students of color may have with Sparticipation, MSU’s annual club-finding event, because they can get "so overwhelmed." The layout of Sparticipation can be hard to navigate and many students do not know where to go, she said.

Spartan Remix’s booths were occupied by over 50 Indigenous, religious, international and other cultural organizations.

One booth for Timetzalimet, an Indigenous Latinx student organization, displayed dream catchers, smudge sticks, colorful weavings and a coyote pelt next to a note reading, “Pet me!”

“We can’t leave our narrative and history to anyone else…we want to represent ourselves,” Timetzalimet secretary Julia Tehauno said.

The organization has weekly meetings where students create crafts such as traditional corn husk dolls and stuffed animals.

“What we want is a positive and uplifting space,” Tehauno said.

Many cultural performances and displays were held in the front lobby throughout the evening. After opening with a Chinese yoyo act, artists began drawing a large crowd of over 200 people.

“It’s nice because it highlights the different talents of everyone at MSU,” Hassan said. “We have [a student] on the yoyo right now and that’s not something you see every day.”

Social Work Sophomore McKayla Foster-Redmond (left), and Advertising Management major Keshawn King (right) represent the MSU Big sister little sister program at Spartan Remix on Sept. 13, 2023.

Electric violinist and MSU alumnus Rodney Page took the floor with a hip hop-infused freestyle, incorporating the university’s fight song and Mozart’s Moonlight Sonata.

Page, who performed alongside the MSU Symphony Orchestra, has been attending Spartan Remix for over six years.

“It’s always good to come back and be a part of Spartan Remix,” Page said. “I think it’s great for new students to find the resources MSU has to offer.”

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A classically trained violinist, Rodney Page, performed at Spartan Remix on Sept. 13, 2023 at the Breslin Center.

Page also brought his 9-year-old son Bryson along to see the event’s performances.

“He’s a violinist himself,” Page said. “I like him to see me perform, see what his dad does for work.”

Other performances included a traditional Mexican dance from Ballet Folklorico de la Luz and an act from MSU’s hip hop dance team, Urban Dreams.

The night ended with a fashion show, featuring both traditional and modern outfits from Black, Indian, Spanish, and Indigenous students.

“We really appreciate the fact that [students] were all willing to come out to this redo,” Hassan said. “We really hope [they] enjoyed it as much as we do.”


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