Author: Devina Persaud

Macaulay Class of 2019!

Taj Mahal – Outside Art Event

Yes, that’s right.

For my “outside art event”, as required by the class, I saw the Taj Mahal. While this wasn’t during my time as a student in Macaulay, it definitely was an memory I will keep with me for a very long time.

In February, my family, some close family-friends, and of course myself went on a “Bharat Yatra”, or what one would call a pilgrimage. It was a way of “closing the circle”, so to speak, because although my great-granparents were born and raised in India, no one had visited since then. So, it was our responsibility to return to the motherland to see what all the fuss was really about.

Growing up, I always heard of how great India is. Although my parents were born in Guyana, which was once colonized by the British, my grandparents, and soon thereafter, my parents always retained their Indian heritage, and so we practiced Hinduism strictly and upkeep our customs. We visited many holy places, but one that stood out to me aesthetically was, of course, the Taj Mahal.

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Thinkin Bout You (no, not actually, lol)

Unfortunately, due to a personal conflict, I was not able to make the Latin Jazz performance at BC. However, after reading my classmates’ reflections on the performance, it truly seems that I missed out! *sad face*

Anyways, in order to convey my thoughts about music, I thought the most appropriate thing to do would be to tell you about my favorite song, and why it is.

So, my favorite song is the cover of “Thinking Bout You”, originally by Frank Ocean, by Daniela Andrade. I’m not much of a follower of non-main stream artists (which is terrible, but I blame selective media coverage), but once I heard her voice…

I was very familiar with the original version by Frank Ocean, which is amazing, don’t get me wrong, But, with Andrade’s version, I could feel the emotion of the song in a way I didn’t before. Her vocalizations and the use of acoustics brought the song new meaning. It almost tore down the coarse impression of the song I had before, and mellowed it down.

Of course, as does any other teenager, after hearing it for the first time, I immediately downloaded it onto my phone and listened to it until it hit my “Top 25 Listened To” in iTunes. However, while that is my favorite song for the lyrics, Andrade’s voice is truly one of a kind, and one to be appreciated.

But, more importantly, music does play a large role in my life, and perhaps one of the biggest. It doesn’t matter what I am doing – walking to school, doing the dishes, showering, eating, running, driving, sleeping, anything, I am always listening to music. Music is truly the score of my life and there isn’t a moment when I am out of it. It provides peace, excitement, and every emotion I could think of. Come to think of it, I can’t imagine my life without music.

And I don’t want to!

For those of you who are curious:

Thinkin’ Bout You (Original), Frank Ocean:

Thinkin Bout You, Daniela Andrade:



Macaulay Snapshot Day – A Reflection

Unfortunately, due to the dance competition I wrote about previously, I was not able to make Snapshot Day. Therefore, I will be reflecting on the image I submitted for Snapshot Day instead.

The picture I took (attached here), was taken on a LIRR ride going from Atlantic Ave to Oceanside, NY. It was a peaceful Sunday, and I was on my way home to have dinner with my family when I saw this sight. Although it was two months into the school semester, I can’t say it truly hit me that I was going to school in New York City, a global attraction, until that moment.

Although it seems insignificant, that picture really captured what I thought was going to be my experience in Brooklyn. The way the sunlight hit the buildings, halal carts lining the street near a meatpacking place, it finally hit me that I was in for a culturally enriching experience in my next 4 years.

And I have to say, the end of the first semester, I am beyond grateful for the opportunities Macaulay has given me to expand my knowledge of New York City.


**I can’t find the picture I submitted for Snapshot Day, so I guess you’ll just have to imagine it!! :)**

Macaulay Deewane at Adelphi’s Best Dance Crew 2015

Upon entering college, I looked for somewhere that I belong, like everyone else. I tried Student Government and was unsuccessful, and was therefore inspired to participate in something I knew I loved – dance.

To my fortune, Macaulay was just starting up its very first Bollywood-fusion dance team, a dance I had been learning for 14+ years. All it took was one faithful audition, and I was part of the team! During our first practice in October, although I was muttering under my breath (or lack thereof) because I was out of shape and out of practice, my body had no issue remembering how to move with the rhythm, perform the moves, and my heart was definitely in it. It was quite the experience to remember.

Fast forward about 2 weeks, we found out we were to be competing in a dance competition against 4 other well-established Bollywood dance teams. Although I was nervous, I was confident that my team, as well as myself, with the practice we needed and the inspiration, we could defeat any team that came our way.

The weekends following that were a blur. What I remember most is running from bio lecture to get food, stuffing my face with that food in the subway, and sprinting to the Macaulay building to change and get ready for practice. Now, repeat for the whole weekend. Yeah, that’s right. In the weeks leading up to the competition, our captain drilled us once during the week for a few hours, as well as during extensive practices on Fridays and the weekend. All of us, at some point, said we hated going and got completely fed up of taking the LIRR and MTA on the weekend, but we knew in order to accomplish our collective goal, we all needed to put in the work.

Fast forward even farther to the weekend of the competition. I remember that day being very stressful for me, because I had an interview for an internship I really wanted that same morning, but there was nothing stopping me from accomplishing all my goals that day. After my interview, I sped from Brooklyn to Adelphi University, where the competition was taking place, for a day full of practice and anxiety.

Rehearsal after rehearsal to dress rehearsal, I was tired by the afternoon, but I knew I had to push through. As more and more teams arrived, sly glances and force smiles were exchanged because we knew that we were going to battle for the victory a mere few hours later.

After seeing my mother for good luck, we proceeded backstage where we then performed.

As with my other performances, there are never words to explain what it feels like to perform. If I had to try to put it into words – everything around me blurs, and it feels like the light is only shining on me. Besides using my peripherals, everyone around me disappears, and after the performance has ended (although while performing I feel as if I am on the brink of dying), I am ready to do it all over again.

After our performance, and seeing our final competitor, we were sure that we were over. But, to our surprise, the 1st place prize went to us.

I don’t have words for how proud I am, but I have to say – it was all worth it.

St. Ann’s Warehouse – Henry IV

Despite the momentary confusion on how to get the venue, my experience was definitely worth it. Prior to the show, all the play-goers were crowded around the tables in the “lounge” area, where they enjoyed light refreshments and discussed other plays by the same company they also enjoyed, most notably Julius Caesar.  So, after hearing their rave reviews about the other show, I knew I was in for a treat.

One of the coolest things I observed in the showing was when the actors, or “prisoners” were escorted on the stage, which was actually a basketball court, by the security guards. I was immediately filled with excitement, because that opening scene gave me an impression of the show being a combination of Shakespeare, the great writer, and one of my favorite shows, Orange is the New Black (which is also set in a woman’s prison).

Anyway, skipping a summary of the plot details, the play was overall very well done by the performers, and the use of an all-female cast in this powerful story was very impressionable, and set many unique parallels, which made the showing especially enjoyable.

In addition, the use of the simple props and costumes, the modernization/simplification of the writing, and the physical proximity of the actors compared to the audience established an intimate connection between the audience and the performers, which allowed the audience to truly connect with the story.

Overall, I thoroughly enjoyed my time at Ann’s Warehouse, and it definitely made me more intrigued in these kinds of modern adaptations of old works, and it is definitely something I would consider going to again.

Tosca – the Metropolitan Opera

My night at the Opera, after being stuck in the NYC Subway for about an hour and half, was definitely worth the hassle.

After being graced by the beautiful fountain outside the Opera, the inside was no less beautiful. Decorated with crystal chandeliers and beautiful red velvet everywhere, the crowd dressed in their nicest dresses and shoes for a night out, the atmosphere was an accurate preview of what a grand night it would be.

Our seats were high up, where the orchestra looked like little stick figures and it felt as if I could touch the ornate ceiling. But, armed with binoculars and the cute little screens in front of our eyes that translated the words for us, we were ready.

I won’t give details of the summary, plot, or setting, because that is not what made the opera stand out to me. Initially, going into the opera, the image I had in my head was a stereotypical one – a middle-aged European woman standing in one place, belting out notes and lyrics that were beyond anyone’s understanding. However, to my pleasant surprise, to say the least, the stage was decorated as was any other play, and the characters were engaged. They were expressive in their movement, powerful in their singing, and made use of the set, which despite the language barrier, really made it possible for the viewer to understand the storyline.

The combination of the visual and audio elements truly made the opera enjoyable, and redefined what an opera was in my eyes. It was no longer an unengaging, boring event, but instead an event that beautifully combined singing and acting in a way that a play didn’t.

Overall, I am very happy that I had the opportunity to attend the Opera, and perhaps if I didn’t, I would be stuck with the misconception that an Opera would not be worth seeing.


My title is yet another poor attempt at a pun, but here we are again.

My time at the highline in class was actually my first time there. Prior to going on the trip, whenever I imagined the highlane, I imagined a miniature suspending bridge, adorned with flower pots. I imagined it as a place that was aesthetically pleasing, only good for pictures with a loved one to remember you were there. But, I was pleasantly surprised to learn that the Highline is actually an elevated, linear piece of an old New York City railroad track, overlooking the Hudson. I was even more pleased to observe the art pieces that were displayed there.

In this post, I have chosen to display a piece called Panorama, by Damian Ortega. The piece, inspired by works of graffiti bent in metal, is displayed in three locations throughout the Highline. The description, however, to my disappointment, was brief and only explained that the art “hangs suspended in deconstruction”, and that his art “superimposes handmade writings onto the landscape”.
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My Night at the (Brooklyn) Museum

Okay, so that was my failed attempt at making a joke about my night at the museum being like the movie… don’t get it? Alright, moving on.

Upon being asked in class, I was ashamed to say that I never visited the Brooklyn Museum. But, fortunately with Macaulay, I am able to venture out of my comfort zone and explore all these places I have never seen before. After being soaked by the glorious Brooklyn rain, I dried off in the subway to the museum, not knowing what to expect, my imagination running wild with anticipation and excitement. However, as soon as I got out of the underground station, I was graced with a  funny sight — a rainbow arching right over the museum. It had to be a sign, right?

But, to be real for a second, it was a very hot day, so stepping foot into the museum provided immediate relief – a rush of cool air. After standing on the crowded line and getting through the beginning procedures, my eyes feasted on so many pieces of art and I was inexplicably curious to know just their name/title, as if that would give me insight to their story. Sure, in class we talk about art almost every session, discussing art on the micro level by observing brush strokes, and even the macro level by talking about possible motivations for specific pieces art, but this experience was completely different. I am not sure that my words will do justice in trying to explain the feeling I had, but the art felt brighter, more alive, and relevant to me. Looking at art through a projector was not even close to coming face to face with someone’s original thought, their expression, their hand-made creation. Even so, simply looking at the art a few feet away didn’t feel as if it was enough. I wanted to touch the art, almost hoping to experience the same emotion perhaps the artist did when creating their masterpiece.

Walking through the museum with my friends, of course like typical teenagers, we goofed around and didn’t pay attention to every single piece of art, but when we did, it was a surprise to all of us. What I found most funny was walking through the museum and seeing something we learned or discussed in class and exclaiming to everyone else, “OMG, DO YOU REMEMBER THIS?” or “ARE YOU KIDDING ME? I’VE SEEN THIS BEFORE”, and even, “Guys, I got this. Let me tell you a thing or two about [insert art masterpiece here]”.  In all seriousness though, it didn’t make sense because recognizing a piece of art should not make you so excited, but it was as if I was meeting an old friend – I knew things about that perhaps others didn’t, and that made it really special. But, I think my favorite part of the night was spending it with my friends. Instead of just talking to each other and having empty, virtually fruitless conversations as usually do, we were able to have real, authentic, intellectual discussions about art, which ended up opening us in an almost vulnerable manner, and bringing us closer — which was really nice, to put it simply.

But, wait, the coolest part was definitely the sneaker exhibit, which had every single sneaker you could think of, and the second coolest (or maybe a tie) was probably the special “light-up-neon-really-cool-fake-rave” exhibit (yeah, unfortunately I didn’t get the name of it by the end of the night), which showed New York, or so I thought, in the most ravishing colors and interesting images.

Overall, my experience at the Brooklyn Museum was one to remember, and you’ll definitely catch me there in the near future showing off this masterpiece in my new home, Brooklyn.

Here are some mediocre-iPhone quality images from the museum… enjoy!



As you can see from the gracious Snapchat tag, I was able to see the beautiful park slope not too far away from the subway.


Sneaker exhibition!


What I thought to be a really powerful piece of art, where the green glowing “dots” represented souls and spirits of loved ones lost due to HIV/AIDs.


“They’re definitely taking a selfie!”


I tried to be artsy with my angles…


“Angles” part 2.

P.S. There was some really awesome party being thrown for the director of the museum right near the Egyptian exhibit, so, uh, hey Macaulay, if you ever want to have a party for your awesome Class of 2019… *cough, cough*