Last Thursday, the 16th of March, Rutherford’s African and Indian dance groups went to Polyfest to compete with the other high schools in West Auckland. It was a day full of music, dancing, food, and for the less fortunate of us, sunburn.
I would recommend joining one of Rutherford’s many cultural groups to anyone. Even if you aren’t very confident it’s a great thing to be a part of. I never thought I would be part of a dance group, much less an Indian dance group. I never had the confidence to dance because I am one of the least coordinated people you will ever meet. But it turned out to be one of the most exciting experiences I’ve had this year so far, and with the right amount of work it turned out great. After weeks of practising and hard work, we finally got to perform on the Diversity stage at Polyfest.
Our whole group was donned in colourful costumes. Getting ready to walk up onto that stage was so scary, we were all really nervous. But when it came time to do our dance, all of our work paid off and the dance was amazing. Everyone looked so graceful and excited as we flowed through our steps to a folk Indian dance, that had the crowd cheering through our songs. Sienna McKeever, also from the Indian group, says “Indian group was great not only because of the choreography and the cultural involvement, but also because of the bonds you build with your group and how you learn to work with your team”.
The African group looked beautiful too. They exuded confidence as they strutted onto the stage and performed their piece, with wild dance moves and great beats. They really stood out as a unique group with a great amount of energy, which was infectious as we all watched and cheered them on. The hard work and the endless hours of work they put in definitely showed on stage and they ended up coming 1st out of all the African groups, and 2nd overall on the diversity stage!
Anyone who went to Fia Fia Night would have seen the performances from the African and Indian groups, but the extra practice time that both groups had pushed the performances from great to outstanding.
Other schools performed too there were dances from different parts of the world and from different cultures like the Philippines, China and Fiji. The crowd was very supportive, and people from many different schools cheered each other on, which created such a strong sense of unity.
After we completed our performances, we got to walk around and see the rest of the event for ourselves. There were cultural food stands, lots of music and good vibes everywhere.
Both of our groups are awesome for having the courage to get out there and perform. I’d recommend to anyone that is considering joining to get in and have a go next year. Polyfest is a great chance to learn about your own (or someone else’s) culture, and try new things. It’s also a really fun day out, and a great way to show off the talents of our school.
Written by Meg Nowak
African dance group; all credits goes towards the original photographers
Indian dance group; all credits goes towards the original photographers