W&M celebrates international music and dance

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Student organizations from across the College braved a weekend nor'easter to perform as part of William & Mary's annual International Music & Dance Showcase. Despite the gloom outside, the inside of the Kimball Theatre was alive with excitement, as students, faculty, and members of the Williamsburg community enjoyed dynamic performances of both cultural music and dance.

This annual event, which kicks off International Education Week, featured acts by the African Cultural Society, the Appalachian String Ensemble, Bboy, Beledi, Students of the Caribbean and the W&M Heritage Dancers. With performances ranging from an English Country dance medley to African and Caribbean rhythms, to a fusion of such influences in Appalachian music, the evening brought together cultural arts from regions all over the globe.

With its high energy and cultural variety, the International Music & Dance Showcase was the ideal event to open International Education Week, held this year from Nov. 16-20. International Education Week, or "IEW," is a joint initiative of the U.S. Department of Education and the U.S. Department of State, designed to help "promote programs that prepare Americans for a global environment and attract future leaders from abroad to study, learn, and exchange experiences in the United States." William & Mary yearly joins institutions and organizations across the country, and embassies all over the world, in participating in this annual event. Other events in the 2009 lineup included a Global Film Series, a series of workshops on international careers and scholarships, and an international dinner at the Commons.

The Showcase was organized by Phi Beta Delta, the international education honor society, and by the Reves Center for International Studies.