On March 26th, Charcoal Magazine hosted a fashion show at the Howard Thurman Center that broke previous event records with 422 guests in attendance. The show highlighted multiple creations from eight stylists inspired by the show’s theme “transformation and expression.” From the clothing silhouettes to the makeup, the entire Charcoal Magazine team held numerous meetings to make sure every detail was taken care of. The show aimed to provide a space for people to let go of their inhibitions, and it succeeded. Guests were told to come wearing what they would wear to walk down the runway, and everyone came to impress. The energy in the space was palpable, with each model welcomed with immense applause when they hit the catwalk.
“Everybody loves a moment,” says co-Editor-in-Chief Chike Asuzu, a junior majoring in public relations at COM. “Something to drop your jaw at and scream, ‘Oh my God, no, they didn’t!’ So, we did, each and every time, and never wanted our audience to know what to expect when they saw the next model come out into the spotlight.”
In between shows, singer Hannah Dedji, a sophomore majoring in business administration at BU, performed an original piece titled “Layers Deep” with Gabryl Adame accompanying her on the piano. Her performance captivated the audience with her song’s lyrics and soulful melody. Not only did the talented Dedji sing beautifully, but she also walked as a model in the show.
After speaking to Asuzu, it was clear that a fashion show was the perfect next step in Charcoal Magazine’s creative journey. An entirely student-run magazine at BU, Charcoal publishes artwork and other original content with the goal of creating a space for POC to come together and find a community. This especially resonated with Asuzu when he first heard of Charcoal. “They expressed how much this space could mean to me as someone struggling to identify themselves as a creative,” says Azusu. “I felt incredibly seen and safe in this community I hadn’t even fully met yet.” The organization has a print magazine and an online publication called Charcoal Connect and has grown significantly in the last two years.
A fashion show centered around expression was also a logical next step following Charcoal’s previous issue, Climax, which focused on rejecting one’s reservations and exploring what makes life worth living. “Between the phenomenal stylists planning their lines, to the incredible hairstylists, makeup artists, and production assistants…to our otherworldly models… this show became the physical embodiment of the answer we all came to after making Climax,” says Asuzu. The fashion show was surreal and acted as an outlet to allow stylists, as well as the audience, to express themselves. It also created a clear pathway for the magazine’s ninth issue titled “Ego Death” which was recently announced on Charcoal Magazine’s Instagram and is set to be released on April 30th.
Marta Laranjeira, Staff Writer
Marta is a second-semester graduate student in the M.S. Public Relations program. She is originally from New Jersey and attended Fordham University, majoring in International Studies. Before moving to Boston, Marta worked as an analyst in New York City. This is her first time working with The COMmunicator, and she is excited to see what the semester brings. Marta enjoys trying different foods, finding hidden gems in Boston while exploring the city, and taking yoga/pilate classes.
Audrey Ritchie, Senior Editor
Audrey Ritchie is a second-semester graduate student earning her Master of Science in public relations at BU. Ritchie graduated from The University of Texas at Austin with a B.S. in public relations and a minor in business in 2021. A life-long writer, she is excited to join the COMmunicator this semester. In her free time, she loves reading, exploring Boston, and playing with her dog, Bear.
Rachel Lin, Staff Photographer
Rachel Lin is a first-year undergraduate student at Boston University majoring in Public Relations in the School of Communications. Raised in Raleigh, North Carolina, Rachel has always been passionate about authentic storytelling and multimedia production. Her constant itch to travel has inspired her to pursue international PR while becoming a cultural documentarian on the side. With a background of advertisement photography for her family’s business and more, she hopes to gain more experience in her first semester with BU’s The COMmunicator. Little things Rachel enjoys are listening to openers at concerts, scrolling through Yelp’s “Cafes & Coffee Shops” section, and performing at dance shows.