A Showcase of International Cultural Glimpse
Pictured cutting the cake (l-r)
Dr. Anyarat Chattharakul (Ping) - First Secretary Thailand, Lisa Wilson - Australia, Vu Minh Hoa - Vietnam, Sungmee Bae - South Korea, Vusala Polukhova - Azerbaijan, Fumiko Yoshizawa - Japan, Nazra Partap - Trinidad and Tobago, Rachel More - Deputy National Librarian of SA, Yoko Ramos-Vingno - Philippines, Beverlyn Yusuf - Nigeria, Irina Petrakova - Russia, Elena Molchan - Belarus, Wanling Chiari - Panama, Jane Barban - Canada, Edita Ilascikova - Slovakia, Tara Salacakau - Fiji and Rana Mansour - Jordan
On 29 November 2013 Madam Yoko Ramos-Vingno of the Philippines in partnership with the National Library of South Africa and The Diplomatic Society hosted a ‘Showcase of International Cultural Glimpse’. The venue for this showcase was the National Library of South Africa Auditorium situated in the heart of Pretoria.
The colourful morning saw traditional dress from 16 embassies being showcased. Each model prepared an explanation of the background, history, design and influence of the traditional dress as well as how it changed over the years.
The countries that participated in the fashion show are Azerbaijan, Belarus, Botswana, Fiji, Georgia, Japan, Jordan, Nepal, Panama, Philippines, Singapore, Slovakia, South Korea, Spain, Thailand, Trinidad and Tobago, and Vietnam.
Mr Bo Isidoro serenades the beautiful models (l-r) Rachel More - Deputy National Librarian, Nino Lezhava - Georgia, Vu Minh Hoa - Vietnam, Edita Ilascikova - Slovakia, Genoveva Fernandez - Spain, Yoko Ramos-Vingno - Philippines, Roma Dhital - Nepal, Nazra Partap - Trinidad and Tobago, Rana Mansour - Jordan, Dr. Anyarat Chattharakul (Ping) - First Secretary - Thailand, Sungbee Mae - South Korea, Maudrene Nithianandum - Singapore, Wanling Chiari - Panama, Fumiko Yoshizawa - Japan, Vusala Polukhova - Azerbaijan, Tara Salacakau - Fiji, Elena Molchan - Belarus and Diana Kabasiye - Botswana
In her welcoming remarks Madam Yoko thanked the sponsors and the participants and paid tribute to the victims of Haiyan that struck parts of the Philippines. Encouraged by the interest of the many embassies to showcase their cultures Madam Yoko pronounced this the first of many Showcases to come.
Mrs Rachel More, Deputy National Librarian of South Africa welcomed participants and guests to the NLSA Auditorium. She was beautifully dressed in traditional African garb.
Mrs Jane Barban of Canada and Chair of the International Diplomatic Spouses Association (IDSA) welcomed the initiative and thanked the organisers for a successful show. She also pointed out that the City of Tshwane is home to more than 110 international representations.
Mr Kirtan Bhana, Founding Editor of The Diplomatic Society, thanked Madam Yoko and the participants. He said that The Diplomatic Society has been showcasing the many different cultures in the monthly newsletter since 1997 and that he and his team have truly been enriched by their encounters with the diplomatic corps. Also hailing the event a success, Mr Bhana said that he is looking forward to organising more of the same.
Guests were entertained by a Russian dancer, Azerbaijan dancers and Mr Bo Isidoro, formally from the Philippines serenaded the models.
An apt ending to the event was tantalising one's tastebuds with the different cuisines from the different cultures.
An enriching experience indeed - we look forward to many more to come.