Culturama Mexico

Last year I got into Culturama Latin America and it was a very fun experience. This is why I have decided to try again this year and I auditioned for four dances: India, Egypt, U.S.A and Mexico to put all the chances on my side and participate again in this year’s Culturama. I did not get into the first three I auditioned for which kind of discouraged me because the only one that was left was Mexico and I thought the dance was very similar to last year’s (I was very wrong!). Yet, when I received the email of acceptance it made me even more thankful and happy to be in it as I did not expect to get in.

The first rehearsals were very interesting as there was another small audition as the performance consisted of four different dances. This was out of the blue but I did really well and I got to choose the dance I wanted. My goal for this year’s culturama was to gain in confidence as we are performing in front of an audience and to meet new people that are in my dance. I did achieve those goals as it helped me a lot in my confidence that I also used for drama.

In addition, I hoped to learn more about the culture in Mexico. Doing their traditional dance, it helped me realise how vivid their culture is . The four dances of this whole performance were very different from one another but they were all cute and joyful. It is interesting as each dance was performed by people with different social status back in the days. You could see it from the difference in movements: the one that was more elegant was for women with high social status and the one with more west side movements was for the working class. Yet, this did not create any separation between the performers as we were all supporting each other on and off the stage. One challenging aspect of this dance was the fact that I was supposed to be a woman from a higher class and therefore had to dance with confidence on stage. This was the complete opposite of what I was actually feeling inside but as my father told me “fake it until you make it”. This means that when you act confident, you will actually feel more confident inside. This theory proved to be true in this dance! Some of the best comments we have had from the audience was “it really made it seem like we were in Mexico!”.

Overall, being part of this dance was a very fun experience and has been the highlight of my beginning in the school year. Spending time and collaborating with the dance leaders and performers helped me build new relationships that I will surely keep!

Pre season touch

For the first season, I decided to sign up for pre season touch. It was interesting because I have played touch at school before and I was in the C team. I was a little discouraged at first as in the french school, I was in B. The fact that I got into a lower team made me rethink if touch was really for me as I did not have the right mindset.

Today, I am in a Woman’s A team outside of school called Legiste and we play tournaments every saturday. They are all very good and some of them are even touch coaches which gave me another challenge: learn how to be the worst in your team and how to improve to get to their level.  This is why I decided to join pre season: even though I feel I am not playing at my level, I can still improve and learn from my and other’s mistake. I was sometimes asked to teach the new girls some skills which helped me develop in that particular movement as they were all asking interesting questions.

Joining pre season helped me improve not only on my touch skills but also on my collaboration skills. Being able to play in different teams takes some practice as each teammate are different and the moves don’t have the same names. It then helped me to fit and change my game in different environments.

To be perfectly honest, I am still not 100% committed to play in a school team as it bothers me not to be in A. I think I need to lower my ego as my level is not as good as I think.

To conclude, pre season touch helped me fit into new environments and learn how to play with differently skilled teams.It also helped me overcome the fact that you do not always have o be the best in every sport. You just have to play at YOUR best! #deep

Soap box activity

Tuesday 26 of October 2017, we had a soap box activity. This means that we had 10 minutes to write about any subject we cared about and then, if we wanted, we had one minute to talk about it in front of the class. 

The first subject that came into my mind was gender inequality. Nevertheless, I did not want to talk about the facts such as “62 million girls are denied an education all over the world, 4 out of 5 victims of human trafficking are girls and women with full-time jobs still earn only about 77 percent of their male counterparts’ earnings”. The reason for that is because I feel everyone knows about that as we are exposed to all this information at school (we are generally very open about it).

So, here is my speech:

“I am not here to talk about the fact that women and men are not equal, that men should back up and women should step forward, but I am here to ask you to change your mindset. As a 16 year old girl, I have never experienced any limitations due to my gender but I know this problem exists. I hear and read every week about this subject: whether it’s a comment on youtube, a meme on Facebook or in mentor time. This can effect our mindset as we may not set our goals as high as we could if we weren’t exposed to this information as much. For example, if a girl might want to become the leader of a company, she might back off from her hopes and dreams because of this inequality without even trying. So I hope this little speech will change what you think about your future: aim high, and you will get there! At least try your best to get what you want so you won’t have any regrets in the future! Don’t let the “idea” of this inequality stop you from trying. It may be harder for you to get there than men, but it will make you even prouder! In my opinion, this could help improve the inequality problem.”

At first, when one of the teachers explained the activity to us I felt a little stressed out as I am not confident in front of an audience (ironic because I do drama). Nevertheless, I regret not saying this in front of the class even though I did not feel confident enough to share it. I was too shy. This taught me a lesson as I now know that I should put myself forward more and not think about it too much. If I had to do it again, I would definitely do it.

Lastly, I was also very impressed with the number of people who shared their personal experience. There was this girl who was very scared but she still went and did an amazing speech. As she is very timid, I admired her as she did something that I couldn’t do even though it looked like she was more frightened than me.