College of the Arts, Latino caucus join to bring food, fun to Kent community


Student dancers perform on the Student Green as part of the “Fall for the Arts FIESTA” on Thursday, Sept. 26, 2013. Photo by Melanie Nesteruk.

Marcus Donaldson

Students gathered to participate in the College of the Arts’ annual Fall for the Arts festival Thursday, Sept. 26 on the Student Green. The college joined the Latino Networking Caucus to present FIESTA 2013 that evening.

Fall for the Arts is the college’s way of giving back to students for participating in the “Fee for Free,” a $15 student arts fee paid by undergraduate students that allows free admission to any campus arts events, said Effie Tsengas, director of communications and marketing for the College of the Arts.

The dean of the college wanted to give back to the student body, so he implemented this annual fall festival, Tsengas said.

Fall for the Arts was titled FIESTA 2013 this year in honor of Hispanic Heritage Month and offered traditional Hispanic foods such as tortilla chips, black beans, rice and refried beans.

The festival also featured several of the college’s performing arts ensembles. A live Hispanic drumming performance captivated attendees, such as freshman electronic media major Mitch Keane.

“I liked the drum ensemble the best,” Keane said. “The drum ensemble was really interesting, really awesome to see.”

Several students said they enjoyed their experiences. Sophomore psychology major Gisel Martinez said she felt at home with the Salsa band.

Martinez said she appreciated how the band played “actual Salsa music, that it was people that knew how to play the music and how it sounded.”

The wind ensemble played a Mexican number to which couples dance.

“It’s a dance that fits between popular and classical,” said Jesse Leyva, director of bands in the School of Music.

Leyva said he thinks the concert bands present at Fall for the Arts help engage students in the arts.

“I think a lot of times when people think about, especially what a concert band is, […] they think about marches, maybe what they hear at the football field,” Leyva said. “But we have three concert bands here that play concerts on campus and do outreach concerts also offcampus. The bands that play inside can play a wide variety of music including, kind of what we heard tonight, some Latin music as well.”

The wind ensemble was one of the acts performing before hip-hop jazz band ArtOfficial, but because of a last-minute cancellation, the band could not be in attendance. However, Kent band The Twistoff filled the void as students danced to the rhythmic sounds.

Contact Marcus Donaldson at [email protected].