Soul Candy event showcases talent, diversity, community at Dominican

Soul Candy is in April Perez’s soul.

The Occupational Therapy major has participated every semester in Dominican’s longstanding live performing arts showcase since her freshmen year and with good reason.

“Soul Candy is one of the highlights of the school year. It’s one of the more popular events because it is music and it is something we can all relate to,” April says. “Students get to see their friends perform on stage and a big group can go and it’s free. It’s a fun thing to do. And the people who have performed now have a little bit of a following on campus.”

A record crowd of nearly 400 watched 15 acts perform in Soul Candy XVI on March 22, in Angelico Concert Hall. Created in 2008 to reflect and represent the diversity of culture on campus, Soul Candy -- supported by a crew of 15 students behind the scenes -- featured poetry, dance, ethnic and cultural dance and music of every genre.

April, a pianist, guitarist, and vocalist, has appeared in Soul Candy as often as she has appeared on the Dean’s List. She again performed an original song. Last year, she wrote and sang a love song “Now I Know.”

This year, as part of Dominican's annual "Unity in Diversity" celebration, Soul Candy included the announcement of the Melba Beals Awards for Excellence in Diversity. Kylie Timmerman, Vice President of Pride Club, was honored as the student recipient of the award while nursing professor Olivia Catolico was named the faculty recipient and Human Resources manager Casey Halcro was named the staff recipient.

Soul Candy was aired live on Penguin Radio and preceded by the Global Cultures Fair, produced by the Global Education Office, in the Angelico Concert Hall lobby.

April also helped organize the program with other students and Dr. Henry Shreibman, assistant professor of religion and philosophy in the School of Arts, Humanities and Social Sciences. Dr. Shreibman is the catalyst for Soul Candy. He recruited April to perform her freshmen year and she has evolved into the one of many students who host the event.

“He brought me out of my shell,” April says. “Now I’m trying to do what he did for me. I’m trying to get other students more involved.”

April was drawn from Southern California to Dominican by its five-year (4 +1) Occupational Therapy program that combines a Bachelor of Science in Health Science and a Master of Science in OT.

“I loved it from the beginning,” she says.

Next year as a graduate student, April intends to perform again in Soul Candy, as many recent alumni still do. It’s in their souls.


March 17, 2017