Once a year the Carpenter Performing Arts Center is filled with Pilipino tradition, vibrant colors, music and dance presented by Cal State Long Beach’s Pilipino American Coalition.
The cultural night will take place April 29 after three months of preparation from student participants. Members have been practicing since February and are currently capping off what they call “hell week,” where practices run early into the morning, every night of the week.
The organization was formed in 1972 to recognize and celebrate the growing Pilipino community in Long Beach. Their annual culture night is the biggest student-run cultural event at the university. Families and friends of the students fill up the seats of the Carpenter Center.
“PCN provides a different experience to each one of our members,” said culture chair Allison Edquid. “For some it’s a way to connect to the Filipino culture, for others it’s a way to make new friends. I think it’s such a huge success because each person that works towards creating this show has such a passion for the production, and passion makes great things.”
This year’s skit centers around two college girls who study abroad in the Philippines. Both girls learn about each other’s upbringing and discover their own identities throughout the show. The storyline is put together by skit writers on the PCN board.
Students are divided into seven different suites which are based on different types of dances in Pilipino culture.
“One of [the] goals of PCN is to show that the Philippines is multifaceted: each suite is a representation of a distinctive region in the Philippines,” said PCN coordinator Carlo Salonga. “Our dances serve as an opportunity for both the performers and the audience to learn about each region and to gain some perspective of the people who live in these regions and perform these dances.”
Sophomore Biology major Aicell Sanchez joined PAC this year and looks forward to her first PCN.
“Everyone in the cast has put so much effort into putting this show together,” Sanchez said. ”I feel like it would be a good way for us to end the season is to put on an amazing show on Sunday.”
Tickets are $15. The show starts at 6 p.m.