The Culture Festival

I was going to write this post on Monday evening, but I had a sudden change of plans. My old Japanese/English conversation partner from the U was in town on business (he’s a lawyer in Tokyo) and we met to grab some dinner and catch up. He’s doing well, although he reports that his 4-year-old son has already lost all the English he’d picked up. He still has the phonology, though, and that’s not bad at all. But I’ll restrain myself and not digress into linguistics. On to the Culture Festival.

The Culture Festival was a two day affair. On Friday, we had a chorus competetion between the classes. Each class sang two songs; one that every class in their grade had to sing and one of their own choosing. The teachers judged the performances and the winning classes sang again on Saturday.

Ah, but the teachers didn’t just stay in the audience. We sang, too (divided by grade, like the students). I’m officially a 2nd grade teacher, since that’s where I sit in the teachers room, and we weren’t too bad. Especially considering that the first time we practiced was Tuesday of that week. That was also the only time I practiced with the others, due to my irregular schedule (ward meeting on Wednesday and at my other school on Thursday so that I could attend the festival on Friday). But anyway, we did okay, all things considered.

Then, on Saturday, we had the actual Culture Festival. This was the schedule: three opening speechs (they love speeches here); performances by the winners of the chorus competition; a play, written and performed by the student council; lunch; an audio drama, written and performed by the broadcasting club (which naturally, also provided the announcing during the festival); the PTA chorus (they were actually quite good); dancing by the PTA (we all could have done without that bit); a long set of songs from the exceptionally good school band; and a short closing speech. All this tookplace in the gym. Meanwhile, two floors of classrooms were filled with art projects. But unlike some schools, we didn’t have any class-run food stalls, or things of that sort. It was really more of an all day assembly than a festival. Nevertheless, it was (mostly) a lot of fun.

But I didn’t take a single decent picture.



3 Responses to “The Culture Festival”

  1. The Drunken Vandal Says:

    Everytime you mention that you had to sing it brings a tear to my eye in laughter. I can’t imagine you like doing that very much…you crooner you. The weather here is getting dwon right fridged. Though I am a bit of a wuss.

    Until you post again…I won’t hold my breath. :)

  2. Nicole Says:

    hmmmm, I don’t believe I have ever heard you sing. No fair that it finally happens hafl-way around the world! I’m glad you got to see your old friend – is he still living in Tokyo? It sure is fascinating how the typical USA perception of Japanese education is it being all science/math and long hours….at least I hadn’t heard of what sounds to be such an emphasis as well on sports (for all) and arts/culture (for all).

  3. Mari Says:

    Hi Kevin,
    Perhaps along with pictures you should post an audio file of your singing!
    It’s winter here now, 22 degress this morning and everything was white with frost.

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