Societies Officer Adam Curtis expresses concern about cultural ignorance amongst students through a reluctance to engage with and so learn about cultures other than their own – something which he hopes to change with the coming of Go Global, the week-long series of events culminating in the re-vamped Go Global: ‘The Show’. ‘I like to think of The Show as a showcase which displays as much of the spectrum of culture-based talents here at Cardiff as possible, to really show off what every international student can add to the University’s extra-curricular life’, Adam explained to gair rhydd. It is something which he believes is not fully explored by many students as the result of a fear of the ‘other’ and an apathy towards learning of different cultures. He was unwilling to mince words: ‘University is possibly the only place you will ever be in your life where there are such a disparate range of people representing different cultures, and so many will leave having taken no positive interest in the massive array of international cultures around them – and that points to a disinterest in students of a Western background. So please get involved this year!’
Adam hopes that Go Global this year will contribute to combating this: ‘It is essentially a huge festival celebrating international cultures,’ he said, ‘and I have two main aims for it this year – the first being to engage and educate the student community, and the second to demonstrate that Cardiff is genuinely open to and excited about its International community.’ The number of societies featured in the final event of The Show (previously Global Village) is up on last year, reaching 18 and giving Adam the best of problems – working out how to fit them all into the evening! ‘We’ve asked everyone to keep their acts to a certain length!’ added Adam with a smile.
After arrangements to host The Show at the New Theatre fell through due to concerns about recouping money after Union funding cuts, the event has been moved back to its old home in the Union’s Great Hall – but it will look sufficiently different, says Adam: ‘We’ve made it rather more formal than before – a real ‘show’ which will be a central element to the whole evening. The change in venue has significantly reduced the ticket prices, which now stand at £5 in advance or £6 on the door.’ There are currently 35 societies hosting events throughout the week, ‘a standard number for Go Global’, according to Adam, ‘but the final evening event has always attracted the most interest, with many societies seeing it as their biggest event of the year.’ We all look forward to seeing this excitement put to genuine and lasting use in this year’s show.
The events during the week, running from 18th to 24th February, will include inter-faith events, tasting sessions, demonstrations and discussions around the University – but the first event of the festival is actually kicking off on Saturday 9th February when the Malaysian Society will put on their own 10th ‘Festival of Diversity’ of Maharajalela: The Musical – ‘the greatest love story never told’ at 7.30pm in St. David’s Hall, which is not to be missed for being early! On the contrary, it looks to be a fantastic introduction to the main week itself. Do check out the trailer on YouTube and buy your ticket from www.stdavidshallcardiff.co.uk/English/Maharajalela-09/02/13/.
Tickets for The Show will be on sale soon.