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Half-Time Towards the Youth Festival Goal
By Kiro Kiruza / Sunday, June 18th, 2006 / New York Culture Center

Strings, woodwinds, and percussions, oh my! - The Youth Band

Stepping through a vanilla steel door, I was engulfed by a strong wave of musical sounds. They say music sets the tone and emotion for any type of event and this is what the Youth Band will do at the festival. Greeted by a sea of musicians of all ages, I could feel the strong determination to perform a piece, which was crossover between classical and rock music. I could not but help but tap my feet to its hypnotic rhythm.

Two Songs and One Ensemble of Voices - The Youth Chorus

"Crush Sound Factory" was the first thing I heard when I walked into this practice. Intrigued, I began to listen more intently. The vocal coach was teaching her students on how to breathe properly in order to achieve the best vocal range. Sitting at the edge of their seats, with backs straight, they began to sing the two key songs for the festival, "Thank You Sensei" and "The Future is Now." To me, they didnít feel like ordinary songs. Anyone can sing a song, but the chorus brought genuine emotion to the lyrics.

Red Ribbon Dancers and Golden Drums - Asian Performance Group

The twirl of dancing red ribbons, the beating of powerful Asian drums, and clash of the cymbals. I closed my eyes for a second and imagined myself at a festival celebrating the Chinese New Year. Well, minus the fireworks. I opened my eyes again and effortlessly, the Asian dancers flitted across the stage to the beat of the drums. Red ribbons twirled and danced around the dancers as if they had a life of their own. This type of talent canít be replaced with special movie effects.

Barefoot and Free - African Dance and Drumming Group

Grace, dexterity, and rhythm Ė all the things I don't have in my two left feet. But these guys amazingly did! In sync with the beating drums, they danced, swayed, stepped, spun, and danced some more. As the drumming got faster, so did the dancers. You definitely felt the energy in that room!

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Journal 1 (April 23)
Journal 2 (May 14)
Journal 3 (May 21)
Journal 4 (June 11)
Journal 5 (June 18)
Journal 6 (June 25)
Journal 7 (July 1st)
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July 15th
July 16th

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