End of January springs celebration for MLK



AFRICAN EXPERIENCE- Based in San Jose, Tabia has been celebrating African American experience for the past 26 years. From left to right

Adam Conston

Students gathered at De Anza College Jan. 31 in celebration of Martin Luther King Jr.’s life and legacy with an afternoon of singing, dancing, inspirational words and food.
The celebration, held in conference rooms A and B of the Hinson Campus Center included performances by the Tabia African-America Theatre Ensemble as well as a panel discussion consisting of De Anza faculty and guest speakers.  The central theme of the event was how King’s dream still resonates today.   
The Tabia African-American Theatre Ensemble, named for the Swahili word meaning “talented,” is an ensemble of performers who have been performing locally for the past 26 years.  Their performance encompassed musical pieces as well as poetry and monologues.  
Some members of the audience sang along to a few of the songs and even began clapping to the infectious rhythm of the drums.
John Lansana, 18, biochem major, said that Tabia’s performance was “incredible” and praised their sense of unity.  
Celina Belai, 18, psychology major, said the acting and overall message stood out as being “very inspirational.”
The panel discussion focused on the question: What was King’s legacy and how does it apply today.
“As I reflect on the legacy of Dr. Martin Luther King, I think about a rhetorical question,” Marion Winters, a retired De Anza educator and panel member said, “And that question is, ‘Why is the legacy of Dr. King still living on?'”  
“It is critical for us to open our eyes, to look around us… and see what the wrongs are that need to be right in the society,” said Winters. “That’s the first step towards an awareness in terms of social justice.”
De Anza President Brian Murphy took the microphone and said, “Walk out of here individually, but then walk out of here with one another and ask each other ‘What did you learn, what did you take from this and what will you actually do in the next couple of days, not the next couple of years, just the next couple of days?'”

SOUL HEALING- The group from the Tabia African American Theatre Ensemble performs a musical number at the Martin Luther King Day celebration in the Hinson Campus Center at De Anza College. Thursday, Jan 31. (ADAM CONSTON / LA VOZ WEEKLY)

LIVELY SPEECH- Retired De Anza faculty member Ulysses Pichon laughs during his speech at the Martin Luther King Day Celebration. (ADAM CONSTON / LA VOZ WEEKLY)

PERFORMANCE FOR A KING – Members of the African-American theater ensemble Tabia, Swahili for “talented,” take a bow at the conclusion of their performance for the Martin Luther King Day Celebration in the Hinson Campus Center on Jan. 31. (ADAM CONSTON / LA VOZ WEEKLY)