Since the beginning of the year, we’ve been preparing and gearing up for the 2015 Season Finale in December: Our Inaugural Concert-Tour to Yunnan, China!
Jet-setting orchestra : The Melody Strings’ Chamber Orchestra is going off for an 8-day concert-tour! This inaugural event entitled Mélodies, took our orchestra to Yunnan China this past winter! Having checked into Kunming’s Green Lake Hotel, the orchestra was treated to a wonderful dinner of local flavors at Shi Ping Hall, by our generous Director!
Sight-seeing : We set off to see a UNESCO site together – the South China Karst, commonly known as the Stone Forest. Nicknamed “City of Eternal Spring” due to Kunming’s perpetual comfortable weather, the snowy weather that delicately capped the majestic rock formations with white highlights was a wonderful surprise! Kiddos used to the tropical heat were ecstatic to experience snowfall!
Noodles and Rehearsal : We try out a local noodle dish most representative of Yunnan Cuisine – Guo Qian Mi Xian (literally – Bridge Noodles)! With happy warm bellies, we begin rehearsal of our concert repertoire at Tian Ma International Art School. Kiddos also gave interviews to the Yunnan Television Station!
Stage 1 : We take to the stage at Hai Bei International School! After a round of sound-checks, we performed to a full auditorium of local students! We were rewarded when Principal Huang, together with her faculty and students, expressed their appreciation of our presentation with much hearty clapping! The Hai Bei souvenir teddies were a wonderfully thoughtful gesture!
Stage 2 (and 3!): After the morning’s impromptu rehearsal at our hotel lobby; with special permission from the hotel management!! Our little musicians take to the impromptu stage that is the hotel lobby to rehearse for their big night! Finally, after months of intense rehearsals, our little troopers take to the stage at Kunming Theatre. It was a wonderful night where we got to share our music with a full house!
Post-Concert Celebrations! : Our friends from the Tian Ma International School arranged a celebratory dinner post-concert for the entire Singapore contingent; specially keeping the mall open past 10 pm for our post-concert dinner at the teppanyaki restaurant.
Tour! : Our entire contingent of little musicians, teachers, with parents and grandparents set off on our tour of the beautiful old city of Dali! We’re putting up at the beautiful Gurong Hotel for 2 nights!
Tour! : The Melody Strings party embarks on a historical tour of the mansion belonging to the prominent Yan family, and were treated to a cultural performance right in the hall of the stately mansion! Rounding off the first half of the day was an exciting horse-drawn carriage ride in the old city! After a hearty lunch, we board a cruise in the waters of Er-Hai, a high-altitude lake where our Director generously sponsored 2 private cabins that came complete with snacks and karaoke systems; high spirits on the ‘high seas’!
Home Bound! : We’re up bright and early to make our way back to Chang Shui Airport to catch our flight back home! There was one more surprise awaiting the kids at the airport; our director presented each of our little musicians with an ethnic musical instrument – the Hu Lu Si, as a memento of this trip!
Our Inaugural Concert-Tour to Yunnan this past winter was a rousing success!!
Our spirited kiddos lived out the experience of [Work Hard, Play Hard(er)];
each of them exemplifying the precious traits we hope will see them through life… certain grit, zest, discipline, optimism, curiosity, social intelligence… all the while being humble and readily thankful always.
Such is the essence of the Melody Strings school creed for all kiddos who pass through our school doors!
“always, a musical stringendo”; onwards to new adventures!
Here’s what you missed on the night of the full-house at Kunming Theatre in its entirety! Enjoy~