Musical standoff held to integrate cultural groups

A review of East Meets West, a party aimed at integrating domestic, international and aboriginal students at Thompson Rivers University.

East Meets West, a face-off between DJs MaRE and Erik Boog outside Old Main, was the first event held by TRU’s new Intercultural Council, Thursday Oct. 4.

“The council itself is trying to integrate domestic, international and aboriginal students because we have noticed that (different cultural groups) tend to stick with themselves,” according to May-Grace Maung, a TRU psychology student and member of the Intercultural Council, which formed over this past summer. “We are trying to get down all those boundaries and integrate [the students].”

There are other events on campus planned over the academic year but Maung said that for now they are just trying to become known to the student body.

The party started with MaRE (real name Vadym Nosov) onstage. He is an international student from Ukraine and when he arrived to Kamloops this summer he immediately sought opportunities to DJ.

“[I wanted] to transfer electronic music from Europe to America,” Nosov said.

He said he doesn’t consider himself a professional DJ yet but an electronic music lover. “I listen to music six hours per day, all the time.”

He said in his hometown he DJed for four years in a local nightclub.

His challenger was Dutch-born Canadian DJ Erki Boog who took the stage second. He has performed his craft at Kamloops nightclubs such as the Commodore and Cactus Jacks, where he has opened for big names such as Steve Aoki, Morgan Page and Chris Lake.

Boog decided to become a DJ after one of his earliest music festival experiences in Holland. His mom helped him with basic music knowledge and he self-taught the rest. Last year he won a contest to play at the Dutch Loveland Festival 2012.

“DJing in Amsterdam in fron of 2,000 people was really nice,” Boog said.

As the night went by, the campus commons filled with students looking to dance.

Both DJs had two 30-minute sets. Today’s electronic beats were mixed with hits such as Gotye’s “Somebody That I Used to Know,” Pitbull’s “International Love,” Psy’s worldwide hit “Gangnam Style,” and a mash-up from Oasis’ “Wonderwall” and Queen’s “We Will Rock You.” There was also a spot for a special sing-a-long “Happy Birthday” for those who celebrated his or her birthday at the party.

To be environmentally friendly and reduce garbage, the International Council asked everyone to bring their own reusable cups for water that was offered during the show.

Musical standoff held to integrate cultural groups

This was originally published on the independent student newspaper The Omega, while I was a Journalism student (exchange) at Thompson Rivers University (TRU) in 2012. Read more about my experience on the Spanish blog #fromkamloops

Author: Oriol Salvador

Journalist in the age of new media. Pop culture nerd and social media Jedi. Over ten years of experience producing, managing and distributing digital content on online platforms and social media channels.

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