Annual AAA Showcase brings culture and comedy to Suffolk

AAA members pose with comedian Elliot Chang

Walking into Modern Theatre, there was a sea of red. Heads turned to take in the detail, customs and showcase that filled the auditorium. There was a sense of excitement, mystery and education as the audience began to fill in the seats. What came next was a night that would be remembered for years to come.

The Asian American Association (AAA) put on a show for the Suffolk community, with their annual spring showcase. The night consisted of rich culture, hearty laughter and diversity this past Friday, Feb. 8.

The event’s highlights have changed over the years ­­ from worldwide actors ­— such as Ronny Chieng, to this year’s stand up comedian Elliot Chang.

The event started off with various groups from all over Boston expressed their native roots through dance and routines. Various groups were featured from MIT, BU and more.

AAA, a 20 year-running club, has flourished into becoming the largest cultural group on campus. Their showcase is dedicated to showing all sides of Asian culture, including the areas that most people aren’t familiar with.

“The main point of the show is to promote cultural awareness and inclusivity. Even though we are a cultural club, we like to have fun presenting it, especially on Lunar New Years,” said AAA President Brandon Wong.

What many may know as Chinese New Year is also known as Lunar New Year. It is typically celebrated starting on the first new moon of the lunar calendar and ending on the first full moon of the monthly  calendar. The time period is usually around 15 days and is often symbolized with red as the color because it is known to represent fortune and good luck.

The yearly event enjoys bringing world traditions to the Suffolk community. What is known as the “lion dance” was performed by various students. This is an expression of Asian culture where the movement of lions is mimicked to bring luck and fortune to its peers. It is performed around this time to celebrate the important traditions that take place.

Throughout the performance, the two lions interact with the audience. They threw oranges and lettuce into the crowd, reaching a select few. In the tradition, those who caught them would be brought luck in their futures.

Several dance groups took the stage to perform various types of dances, including K-POP, traditional styles and more. The event was hosted by Wong and junior Anna Nguyen, who kept the audience upbeat with amusing jokes and commentary. The audiences gave standing ovations throughout the show.

But the night wasn’t complete without the hilarious and talented comedian Elliot Chang. Being the biggest act of the night, Chang’s comedy routine focused on how growing up as an Asian American has shaped him into the person he is today.

The witty banter was well accepted by the audience. Chang’s message evolved into a very direct and hysterical comedy, emphasizing the importance of being oneself, no matter the limitations or expectations brought upon by others.

He talked about growing up with the pressure brought on by Asian parents and how children may at times feel confused and torn between Asian and American culture. He assured the audience that it’s okay to feel lost or discouraged; what matters most is how you choose to continue your life.

The Suffolk community expressed their gratitude for every aspect of the showcase. The hardworking AAA E-board members, performers, staff and more committed to the success of this show. For those that missed  this year’s showcase, you can mark your calendars for the next one.