Organized by Graham Cruickshank, Oceana’s fine arts teacher, and other hard working Oceana students, FAME Night took place last Friday, March 9th in the little theater where members of the Oceana community had the opportunity to display their talent, be it art or music.
The history of FAME night originates from a previous Oceana tradition called BAM (Because Art Matters) which ran from 2001-2013. According to Mr. Cruikshank, “It was a huge event, it was too much, and it mostly fell on my shoulders and whichever hard working students I could recrute. After a number of years I said I couldn’t do it anymore, but I’d be willing to do something super modest, so this [FAME] is like the ultra mini BAM.”
Throughout the evening, Cruickshank’s room was even artsier than usual, with student creations displayed for audiences to enjoy. Viewers voted on their favorite throughout the night, and the winner received a fifty dollar gift card. Drawings based on television and comic book characters were posted to large blue display boards. Delicately crafted sculptures and tapestries were also on on display. Vendors offered meals reminiscent of a scrappy young college artist diet: beef and chicken ramen packets, as well as tea and hot chocolate. A portion of the night’s earnings were donated to the Parkland shooting victim’s families to help support their medical expenses.
Across the hall in the little theater, an array of performances took place. The Skyline College-supported student choir did a rendition of “What a Wonderful World” and “Somewhere Over the Rainbow.” The band, Orth & Friends, performed. This included Oceana’s very own science teacher, Mr. Orth, his wife and daughter. Other high school teachers from around the district also took to the stage. I interviewed two talents, Rucel Oblea and Miquelle Taubman, from that night on their passion for singing and performing.
When asked why they performed that night, Oblea’s answer reflected the support she felt coming in:“I have a passion for singing and I’ve always wanted to perform…I always have that soft spot for it, and
the people here are super nice and accepting, I just feel comfortable doing it.”
Taubman’s experience was one of spontaneity. She explained, “Well honestly I wasn’t going to at first, but then my friend was like, ‘Hey do you want to do a duet?’ And we were going to, and then she couldn’t do it…I was like ‘well there’s no harm in doing something myself.’” It is an admirable feat to go up on stage and perform all on your own, but Taubman managed. “I’m a senior and I haven’t performed for any of my friends or anyone at the school so I was thought this is my chance to show people that I sing.”
A grand thank you to all the artists, singers, and creators in that participated in FAME Night. Though we find events like this, just apart of school culture, it would not be possible without their creativity, whether it be through paint or voice. “I like the fact that my freshman art club came up with [the idea of] of a competition. They really came out and helped me a lot today. Without them this wouldn’t have happened,” says Cruikshank.