CelebrAsian Show Recognizes AAPI Heritage Month With Lively Cultural Showcase

On Saturday, May 11, Asian Society hosted the annual CelebrAsian show in Kemper Auditorium to kick off the celebration of AAPI Heritage month. Featuring musical bands, singers, dancers, and comedy from the emcee’s, the night showcased a wide variety of Asian performing arts that ranged from K-Pop performances to traditional music. The night ended with Chinese scallion pancakes served in Underwood. 

With May 1 marking the start of AAPI month, Asian Society organized the show to encourage Asian students to celebrate themselves and their talents. Angela Zhao ’26, a member of the Asian Society board, discussed the purpose of the show and the welcoming environment created by the performers and the audience.  

“We organized the event to help celebrate Asian talent on campus, and create a specific place where people of affinity could come to celebrate their culture. It was a really good way to release creativity for the performers [as] they were able to feel the adrenaline of performing while also celebrating themselves. We also had traditional Chinese scallion pancakes at the end, which really helped with bonding because everyone could talk with each other about the performances afterward,” said Zhao. 

The show offered the spotlight to many Asian students who had not done performances related to Asian culture, or had never performed on the Andover stage at all. Christian Estrada ’27, an audience member, noted the significance of the performers relating back to their respective cultures, and commended the performers who were newer to the stage. 

“There were a lot of performances that weren’t in English, so there was a lot of diversity and it was cool for performers to speak in their native languages or languages they use at home. I knew a lot of the performers and for some of them it was their first performance, but all of the group’s had really good synergy and the music was very smooth. For people I didn’t really know outside of class, it was really surprising to see their talents being featured,” said Estrada. 

One of the performances was a band cover of a K-Pop song, which featured a wide variety of instruments playing the upbeat and lively tune. Hannah Oh ’27, the leader and organizer of the group, mentioned the initial challenges that eventually paid off, resulting in a rewarding performance for all members. 

“It was a very good balance between the energy of everyone in [the band] and everyone’s ability and talents. Our band performed ‘Polaroid Love’ by ENHYPEN with vocals, piano, marimba, bass guitar, drums, and violin. At first it was hard to come to a consensus on what type of song we wanted to do, but in the end, all the practices were worth it,” said Oh. 

Before the show took place, Asian Society members faced some difficulties while preparing, including scheduling conflicts and lack of participation. Zhao gave insight into the challenges they faced while preparing for a show like this, and how the board members worked around these to deliver a successful event. 

“We had some trouble with getting people to participate and sign up to perform because there was another dance show right after, so we had to find a way to work around that and schedule it so dancers could make both shows. Also once we came to set up, there were some instruments that were missing so we had to go and find them,” said Zhao. 

Despite there being a few difficulties, these small hiccups did not take away from the overall quality of the show and built more camaraderie between the audience and the performers. Estrada mentioned how he was able to help out with the equipment, and also alluded to the sense of affinity that was built up as the show went on. 

“Some things didn’t really go according to plan, such as the drum set being missing. But the audience and community were all very supportive and welcoming. I and a couple others helped put together the drum set on stage after they found it and sometimes when the equipment wasn’t properly working we laughed it off together,” said Estrada.