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CSA hosts Heritage Ball to unite cultures




The Cleveland School of the Arts will host a Heritage Ball, an event designed to bridge cultures during a time of nationwide racial and ethnic tension.

The ball, open to District and other high school students and their guests, is scheduled for 7 to 11 p.m. on Saturday, April  7 at CSA, 2064 Stearns Rd. Tickets cost $20.

Formal apparel is required, so no jeans are allowed. The school is requesting culturally inspired attire, but Assistant Principal Renee DiBiasio said students who are uncertain about what to wear can choose anything that is acceptable for a homecoming dance or prom.

The event also will feature ethnic food, music and dance. A king and queen will be crowned.

CSA Dance Director Imani Jackson got the idea for the ball early in the school year, during a lesson on the history of dance. She asked students how much they knew about their ancestors, and in many cases the answer was: not much.

"A lot of the students knew very little about their cultures, they knew very little about each other's cultures," said Jackson, who organized the dance with help from her dance students. "We want them to learn about each other, celebrate each other. We want them to celebrate our differences as well as our similarities."

April is the first-ever Diversity Month at CSA. DiBiasio said the school plans to hold a potluck multicutural dinner for the school's students and their families, asking them to bring a dish that reflects their culture.

"We don't do enough to celebrate the diversity of CMSD, and CSA specifically," she said. "We have a ton of diversity."

To purchase tickets for the Heritage Ball, go to Tickets also will be available at the door.

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