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CSA hosts event to celebrate Asian Heritage month

Free Bullet’s lead singer Pei Pang entertained attendees of last Friday’s Chinese Culture Late Night event. (credit: Sky Gao/) Free Bullet’s lead singer Pei Pang entertained attendees of last Friday’s Chinese Culture Late Night event. (credit: Sky Gao/) Free Bullet played for the Chinese Student Association’s cultural Late Night event. (credit: Nicole Hamilton/Comics Editor) Free Bullet played for the Chinese Student Association’s cultural Late Night event. (credit: Nicole Hamilton/Comics Editor)

The Chinese Student Association (CSA) hosted the Chinese Cultural Late Night in the University Center on Friday night.

The highlight of the event was a show by the band Free Bullet, comprised of six Carnegie Mellon students — two from mainland China, one from Taiwan, one from India, one from Korea, and one from the U.S.

Besides the live concert, CSA also offered free bubble tea, Chinese board games, and karaoke, one of the most popular entertainment activities in China. However, due to certain technical problems, the karaoke equipment did not work.

“Through this event, we hope to spread Chinese culture, to make CSA a more active club, to make Chinese culture more mainstream in this school,” said Chang Qi, a junior mathematics major and the organizer of the Late Night event.

She explained that last year’s Chinese Cultural Late Night was a combination of traditional and modern culture, but this time CSA focused more on modern Chinese culture, as evidenced by the Chinese pop music.

Jiaxing Yu, a first-year electrical and computer engineering major, said, “It’s a nice try to reach out for CSA, and people are really interested in this. Except for the not very Chinese band performance — otherwise it would be perfect.”

Since most of the songs Free Bullet played were American pop songs, several students said that they enjoyed the music, but did not know that it was specifically a Chinese Cultural Late Night event.

Elliot Rosen, another first-year electrical and computer engineering major, said, “I had no idea, really. I was just there for the music. I didn’t know it was a Chinese culture thing, even though nearly everyone was Chinese ... but the music was good because I don’t see live music that much.”

Free Bullet was formed one month ago, according to the band leader, Pei Pang, a senior mathematics major.

“The thing is that we are a new band,” Pang said. “We tried to get all the connections we have to have shows. I’m very familiar with CSA.... Actually my old band played for them last year, but definitely the new band is better than the old band. It’s just a revisit to the show.”
Pang also mentioned that it was hard for his new band to play Chinese pop music because the group is so international.

“If we play a Chinese song, it’s probably kind of sad to [non-Chinese members],” he said. Yet Pang said they might incorporate more Asian or Chinese elements into their music in the future.

“My drummer actually mentioned that he wants more exotic elements in the songs,” he said. “He thinks it’s pretty cool.”

Chinese Cultural Late Night is just one of the events celebrating Asian Heritage Month throughout November. There will be a Taiwanese Culture Night in the University Center on Nov. 19.