Wednesday, November 6, the Forever Young Modeling Troup (FYMT) presented “Destination Unknown Fashion Show” in Leone Cole Auditorium.
Established in 2009 by founders DeAunna Harris and Darron Carter, FYMT is an eager group of students that are active on campus and in the community in their efforts to express themselves through fashion.
The boarding pass, or ticket for the show, said the ‘flight’ would take off at 7:00 p.m. It did not take flight until 7:28pm. Talk about being fashionably late.
Passenger seats began at $3 for coach, with attendees paying more to sit in first class. All enjoyed the music spun by DJ Jaski and eagerly anticipated the start of the show. The dimly-lit auditorium brightened as the hosts, John Morton and Myah Knight, welcomed the audience to the fashion show.
The show began with an opener entitled, “Prepare for Take-off” according to the U.S. passport styled program. Finally en route after a half-hour delay, models Jarius Harris and Bianca Holmes strutted down the runway styled in flight attendants’ attire. With a few Tyra Banks inspired twists and turns, both models were working the tiled catwalk.
The first stop in the “Destination Unknown Fashion Show” was Africa. Two dancers from Komplex Royalty Dance Crew performed a modern African-inspired dance with a hip-hop twist.
The mixing of tribal print and vibrant colors at the destination was impressive and stunning. The models walked bare foot in crop tops, bandeaus, wrap skirts, and African-inspired head-wraps. Two models even walked with baskets on their heads, mimicking the way most women from Africa carry their belongings.
FYMT model and JSU Freshman, Satin Gordon said, “My favorite look was Africa. It was very traditional and I always wanted to get the feel of how true African culture really is”. For her first semester as a part of the modeling troupe, Gordon was not shy walking the runway in her African inspired outfit wearing a black bandeau, hot pink turban, and below-the-knee yellow printed skirt.
Following the trip to Africa was a brief intermission. Local Atlanta rapper and student of JSU, ACE (stage name) performed his song “Bad Chick in Chanel”. During his performance to get the crowd hyped, the troupe models were backstage getting ready to take us to our next destination.
The next stop was Tokyo. Familiar with the eccentric Japanese street style, most were prepared to see an overload of costume-styled clothing and accessories, crazy hair and make-up, loud colors, and mixed prints.
There were only a few styled this way, but the manner in which the models were choreographed to walk was phenomenal. As the up-beat hip-hop infused Japanese music played in the background, all the models involved in this scene walked out and were lined up with enough space between each other to strut through in a zigzag formation.
When each model reached the end, he or she struck a Japanese influenced pose and proceeded walking back. The end of the Tokyo trip consisted of slow serene Japanese music, as model LaAsia Bell sashayed down the runway holding an orange orchid, wearing a soft hunter green short dress with kimono sleeves. Her outfit was a crowd favorite.
After the Tokyo destination, there was a second intermission. During this time the host and hostess directed everyone to look under their seats to find a hot pink sticky note. Three random audience members had to compete in a walk-off with the winner being Delta Sigma Theta member and former FYMT model Nakia Lewis, who took home a gift card for her best model walk.
The final destination for the night was Paris, commonly named one of the fashion capitals of the world. The color theme for this destination was black, white, grey, and a pop of red.
“Rich Girls” by Gwen Stefani played while models Yunnie Hyatte and Leneldra Brown owned the runway strutting in their all black Parisian get-up. Hyatte’s outfit reminded audience members of a modern day urban CoCo Chanel with her short black wrap dress, black hat, sleek black gloves, and Virginia Slim.
Also used during the Parisian destination was black faux leather skirts, pants, and tops-a favorite fall trend this season.
Jarius Harris, sophomore and first year FYMT model, said his favorite look was from Paris as well. Harris stated his definition of fashion.
“Fashion is expressing who you are through fabrics and materials without any boundaries. Take it there!”
And that he did when he wore his black faux leather skinny pants, black faux leather top, black blazer, and a gold chunky lioness necklace.
Harris’s Parisian look was one of the crowd’s favorite looks from the stop in Paris.
The last intermission for the night was a heartfelt spoken word performance by JSU student, Trey. Following his performance, the passengers arrived at the final destination, the land of the free and home of the brave, the United States.
This was a destination that everyone could relate to as far as styles and trends in America go. Model Brittany Dale sang “Empire State of Mind” by Alicia Keys as model Satin Gordon started off the show in her bright citron green sweater, pink knit infinity scarf, destroyed denim shorts, and blue heels.
Then a remixed rendition of “American Boy” by Estelle played as the troupe models walked in their best U.S.A style. A combination of bleached skinny jeans, oversized tanks and tees worn as dresses, combat boots with knee high socks, and denim shorts were all a part of the destination to America.
As the trip came to an end, the troupe models did their finale walk to Jay Z’s “Forever Young”. Forever Young Modeling Troupe President LouNique Bell claimed her favorite look of the night was the American street style. Bell said that she would label the show a success. “I am very proud of FYMT,” she exclaimed. Audience member Ericka LaShaye, who saw the show from the first class point of view, said though she loved the intermissions, she wouldn’t have changed a thing from the show.
The fashionable students of Jacksonville State University can’t wait to see what’s in store for Forever Young Modeling Troupe in the spring of 2014.