BY SERIAH SARGENTON
Bringing community together and highlighting the importance of black fashion and culture throughout the decades was important to the members of Spectrum for their annual fashion show.
The show was held last Friday as part of Spectrum’s black expo month. The theme for the fashion show this year was “timeless,” to show the evolution of black history through fashion.
“We have the roots of where we come from to the ’20s, the groovy ’70s to the ’90s and modern afro punk,” said Shi’ann Ottley-Cleveland, the host.
Lamara Burgess, the advisor for Spectrum and Associate Director of Intercultural Leadership, was impressed with how hard the students worked to put on the show and she was excited to see all their work pay off.
“This was a great turnout. It’s not just Saint Rose students, there’s students from all over the capital district, and even friends from the city. It’s great that they have this kind of support,” said Burgess.
Eighteen models endured long practices to pull off “Timeless,” all while keeping up the energy needed for embodying the character of the decade they modeled in.
“The most stressful part of the show were the hours leading up to doors opening, trying to make sure we started on time and that everything was all set,“ said Gabrielle Alleyne, secretary for Spectrum.
Spectrum model and Saint Rose freshman Emily Perez was ready to walk the runway and show the audience that she had what took to be a model. The show allowed Perez to meet new people and feel more comfortable on campus.
For Ty McGraw, Spectrum model and junior at Saint Rose, working with the spectrum e-board and other models allowed him to have a new college experience and break out of his comfort zone as well as show how much black culture has changed over the years.
Though it was a new experience for McGraw, for Brianna Byrd it was nothing new. Bryd has been modeling since she was in high school, but for her the atmosphere is different now that she’s in college.
“It’s more structured, more tense than high school, it brings back memories,” Byrd said.
The show would not have been a success without the model coordinators Rocio Perez Valerio and H. Thurgood, the designers, make-up artists and everyone who worked hard to make the night a success, according to Alyssa Powell, the public relations officer for Spectrum. Advertisements posted on social media by the Public Relations and Advertising club also helped, according to Catherine Rodriguez, the treasurer.
Part of the event consisted of a dance competition between Tyler Warren, Reginald Hudson, Sabrina Hamilton and Miaija Jawara. The dancers performed in front of the audience in a soul train as the models wore outfits to represent the “grooviest decade.”
It was a close call between Hamilton and Hudson, but after hearing the audience screams, Hudson won the competition.
“The show had great atmosphere, great energy, the clothes are great and the models are ‘timeless,’” said Warren.
The success of the show was worth all of the work for the Spectrum executive board.
“I’m happy that the Saint Rose community came out to support [us],” said Lee-Mon Ryan, president of Spectrum.
The number of people who attended this year’s fashion show was ten times higher than last year according to Alleyne, and over 200 fashion show tickets were sold.
Now that the fashion show is over, Spectrum is going to continue their weekly Tuesday meetings and begin planning their annual African and Caribbean celebration.
“I think it’s just the positive atmosphere, there’s a lot of crazy things going on in the country, and this is bringing them together,” said Burgess.