The Showcase highlights hip-hop culture

By Paula Fuentes

Hip-hop has become a big part of our culture in society, reaching a wide variety of people through music, art, dance and spoken word.

But the genre has evolved over time, being influenced by many different groups such as African Americans and Asian and Pacific Islanders.

With so many different parts to the hip-hop community, The Showcase, put on by the Asian Pacific Islander Student Center at Bronco Commons Friday, was able to encapsulate the different aspects with performances, vendors, food and giveaways.

“We want to show people that there are other groups that have mastered the craft and culture,” said Thievery Lay-Bounpraseuth, coordinator of APISC.

The Showcase had a variety of vendors selling clothes, thrift items, grooming products and food.

Other organizations such as Associated Students, Inc. and the African American Student Center also played a large role in the event.

“It was important for us to include others that have also pioneered and had a large influence on hip-hop and its culture,” said Lay-Bounpraseuth. “It was great to hear the African American center share their history and influences.”

Performances were made up of many different groups such as Waju, Vietnamese Dance Crew, Shelley Bruce and a special performance from The Kinjaz.

Hip-hop could be described and interpreted in many different ways, which was clear during the performances.

Each group had their own flare and method of highlighting the hip-hop culture.

The culture of hip-hop is much more than just music, however.

Artists and performers express themselves and issues that are important to them through different forms.

One of the issues tackled is social justice.

Bambu is a Filipino rapper who has tackled many issues such as workers rights, immigration and police brutality to name a few.

Artists like Bambu are examples of hip-hop that popular media does not always highlight.

He was one of the performers that Cal Poly Pomona students were treated to, and his performance was an example of the foundation for what the event has turned into today.

The well-organized and successful event has been planned since November, and APISC has been working hands-on since January.

“There are a lot of moving pieces, and with performers, vendors and other aspects, schedules get a bit complicated to work for everyone. But with a lot of work and time we were able to pull this event together,” said Lay-Bounpraseuth.

This was a great year for APISC since there were plenty of successful events and workshops, and The Showcase was a great way to end the year.

Student dance crew performing.

Paula Fuentes / The Poly Post

Student dance crew performing.

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