RIT’s Unity Fashion Show Celebrates “Coming to America” in Style, Nov. 5




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In the movies, comedian Eddie Murphy came to America in search of a bride. Those in search of stylish attire will be coming to Rochester Institute of Technology for the annual Unity Fashion Show.

Coming to America in Style is the theme of this year’s extravaganza, hosted by RIT’s Black Awareness Coordinating Committee and the North Star Center for Academic Success & Cultural Affairs. The event takes place at 7 p.m. Saturday, Nov. 5, in the Alfred L. Davis Room in RIT’s Student Alumni Union.

Fashions for the show are inspired by Coming to America, the 1988 comedy film in which Prince Akeem of Zamunda, played by Murphy, breaks with the tradition of his culture and travels to America to find a wife. RIT student organizers are partnering with high school and college students from several Rochester-area schools to coordinate the evening’s program.

“The college students serve as role models,” explains Wanda Dansler-Hill, program coordinator for the North Star Center and administrative advisor to the Black Awareness Coordinating Committee, “introducing the youngsters to a different side of college life—one that highlights the importance of teamwork, healthy social interaction and leadership.”

Up-and-coming independent designers—and RIT students—Reggie and Brent Shore of Kyle Jones Designs are the featured designers for this year’s fashion show. Work from Rochester’s own Nathaniel Johnson of Nathaniel’s Originals will also be showcased.

“Other highlights include live performances by members of the Frances Hare Dance Troupe, Musical Brothers Forever, and students from the In Control and Street Squad youth groups of Rochester,” says Erica Holder, president of the Black Awareness Coordinating Committee. “Models will work the runway with fashions from Xquisite Clothing Boutique, Fashion Flair, Men’s Warehouse, David’s Bridal and Tuxedo Junction.”

Doors open at 6:30 p.m. and admission is $10 at the door. Advance-sale tickets—$5 for RIT students and $7 for faculty, staff and the general public—can be purchased by calling the North Star Center at 475-4704.