Phi Sigma Sigma sorority and the Cabaret Series cohosted Phi Sigma Sigma’s annual talent show in memory of their sister Nereyda Iniquez, who died from leukemia in 2005, Tuesday Dailey Theatre.
The talent show also marked the last event in the Cabaret Series, a 12-week artist showcase produced by theater major and Phi Sigma Sigma member Michaela Bulkley for her senior project.
“It is important for … these artists to have a place to experiment and express their art, and I didn’t feel that we had a place on campus,” Bulkley said.
Tuesday’s show featured 12 performers. Most of them played instruments – guitars, harmonicas and ukuleles – and sang originals or covers by well-known artists.
Freshman communications major Mulan Elite Novilla performed two songs: a cover of “Lullaby” by Lateeya, and an original titled “With You,” which was written about a relationship.
“This is my third time performing for the Cabaret Series,” Novilla said. “I love it because there is no judgment and I love to see what others create.”
Mariela Martinez, senior political science major, read a poem to the audience, and then she read a shocking letter, which she explained was a threat sent to the Islamic Center of Claremont discriminating against Muslims in the United States. Martinez then urged invited everyone in the audience to write a letter of support to the local Islamic center.
Performers were either students or otherwise connected to the University.
The $225 raised at this event were for the Nereyda Iniquez Memorial Scholarship, which was created by the sisters of the Theta Upsilon chapter of Phi Sigma Sigma to celebrate Iniquez’s life.
“Sisters can apply for the scholarship and it helps a sister on a need basis,” said Frances Viste, senior child development major and Phi Sigma Sigma philanthropy chairwoman.
Bulkley’s Cabaret Series featured a variety of different artistic events every week haunted house, dance night and murals.
“I think right now it’s a trying time and we need a way to express ourselves in a healthy way – and that is art,” Bulkley said.
“This is what this is all about, using art to change the world. Since I am a theater major, I have a set of skills that lets me empower artists and that’s really what I want to do, to help my community.”
After the scheduled performances ended, audience members were invited to sign up and perform for the open mic segment.
Sharon Lau can be reached at firstname.lastname@example.org.