Words cannot express my emotions at this moment. We had our show today, and it was a massive success. It was clear by the audience’s initial reaction to my collaboration piece with Camille and Jalyn that they had never seen anything like AADC before. I don’t think they had any idea what to make of it. But after they had time to understand what they were seeing, they were loving it. The thunderous applause when we finished our final piece spoke volumes to what we had done. We brought a new style and culture to hundreds of people in China who likely have never heard of or experienced an African-American aesthetic. Our concert was the true definition of cultural exchange.
— Ryan, Junior, Theatre
Today was concert day! This was the highlight event of our trip, so I was excited all day. During rehearsal I was nervous that the show would not be as impactful as our performance in the Potpourri of the Arts concert. Our stage was carpeted and the open window near the stage allowed an icy breeze to flow backstage. I thought our muscles would be too stiff for dancing, and I thought the carpet would prevent smooth dancing.
But the show was wonderful!
The energy was high, and no one was bothered by the carpet or air. I felt so good dancing. The audience was encouraging and I could feel their love. They clapped so often, and I loved their support. In the U.S., the audience usually waits until the end of the piece or show to clap. But here in China, our audience clapped after certain groups, or for certain dance techniques, and were especially responsive to the live drumming.
They were so impressed, and I’m pleased that they enjoyed the show. I loved the celebration and union between AADC and the CUMTB students. All the hugs, smiles, and photos were sincere. This was truly a day I will never forget.
— Allison, Junior, Animal Behavior