On Tuesday night, Ramapo students and faculty were invited to join in the Zumba and Food Fest. The event played music provided by DJ Joe Cassano, and was presented by the American Studies Club, Coccia Foudation, Italian Club and Spanish Club.
According to a representative of the Italian Club, the Zumba and Food Fest served as a way to blend foods from all cultures with music and dance:
“We combined Zumba and food because we wanted to share with food, music and dance styles of other cultures,” said Francesca Simone.
David Erman, president of the American Studies Club, finds it important in his efforts as president to not only share American culture with his peers, but also incorporate how Americans can learn to appreciate other cultures.
He incorporates food in his event because, “food is representative of culture and when you bring people together with food they want to be a part of the amalgamation of tradition and culture.”
Simone is a certified Zumba instructor, and brought her knowledge of the workout phenomenon to bear, saying Zumba is a tool for becoming involved in other cultures, because it is an internationally known exercise.
Zumba includes various dance styles and music. In places where traditions, habits and culture change, music is globally shared and what exists is a great amount of styles and forms of music.
Lidia Kim, a senior and an instructor, said, “In order to have a routine be ‘Zumba’ it must, by the rules, include at least three international styles of dance.”
In the hour and a half Zumba session led by Simone and Kim, Ramapo students and faculty were welcome to join in the routines or just come to eat and watch.
Since the event was meant to be educational as well as fun, the two instructors made sure to choreograph their routines to all genres of music from all places in the world.
Simone, who has co-run the event for the second year in a row, says, “Zumba is a fun exercise, and we wanted to share different cultures in any way that we can.”