February 23, 2023
By Rachel Scofield
Pickerington High School North’s Black History Month production, Celebration is a tribute to history and culture, told through the world of the BET Awards. The public is invited to see the show, February 23 at 7 pm at North’s Performing Arts Center.
“The BET Awards is a very well known staple in black culture as it has been highlighting black excellence since 2001,” said director Allen DeCarlo. “Our production will showcase six amazing segments that take on the harsh realities of black struggles, but will also show the amazing stories behind so many influential people, and aspects of life that have been shaped by black culture.”
The show starts with the celebrities arriving on the red carpet. They pose for the cameras and field questions regarding their families and future projects.
The ceremony itself begins with a memorial slideshow to prominent figures in the black community who have been lost in recent years, including celebrities, influential leaders and victims of police shootings.
After the memorial, Celebration transitions into a fast pace which it sustains until the final song. Prominent figures, both current and historical, are nominated for awards in a variety of categories. As the nominees are introduced, we learn a little about who they are and how their contributions have made an impact.
In addition to the awards, the show features dancing from both east and west Africa. During a second interlude, audience members are invited on stage to compete in a trivia contest. Both segments were popular with the Lakeview Junior High students who caught the show Wednesday morning.
“I think it is a really fun way to balance education and entertainment,” said Liya Mamo, a senior who plays Rihanna in the show. “If it is just a presentation, then it’s hard for anyone to just sit and listen. If you are infusing entertainment that they like to see, they won’t even realize that they are picking up on stuff.”
Ridgeview Junior High eighth grader Bryce Gregory enjoyed the West African dance, the wardrobe and the “singing at the end”.
The show concludes with a powerful rendition of Cynthia Erivo’s Stand Up by the incredible voice talents of Daisha Price, Niya McFadden and Christian Strong.
Tickets for the show are $5.00 and may be puchased online through the Pickerington Schools box office.
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