Beauty & Melody

Wrapping up the Beauty & Melody tour

Beauty & Melody on stage in front of school children.

By Shigeyo Henriquez

The last stop, the last week of Beauty & Melody in the U.S., brought us to Knoxville, Iowa. Every day we could feel closer to the day to say “Goodbye.” It’s the toughest day of the tour, the final day.

A week went by as usual, workshops at Northstar Elementary school, West Elementary school and middle school. We visited the 3M factory in town, took a tour of the production area, and gave a mini performance for the workers.

The final workshop in Knoxville was for high school students.

Inspiring workshops in Bloomington, Illinois

Young woman stands, speaking on stage.

By Shigeyo Henriquez

Eric Zeal and Brandy Maloney, Bloomington Center for the Performing Arts (BCPA) staff, escorted us to every school we visited with hot water and green teas. The week went by fast. We went to see a B-52’s concert which was a blast, and Saturday some of us went to the magic show at BCPA, as well. All were generous invitations of BCPA.

Keeping busy in Terre Haute, Indiana

In a TV studio, musicians shake hands with a man.

By Shigeyo Henriquez

The week in Terre Haute, Indiana started with such a nice reception at the home some Arts Illiana board members, a performance at the library, workshops at the elementary schools—our schedules were filled. We often feel a bit of tired, but no one ever complains. Beauty & Melody members are always willing and proud to show their music and culture. Community people, young or old, are also eager to lean Chinese culture and their music!

Every new community we visit something happens unexpectedly.

Beauty & Melody in Sandusky, Ohio

Two musicians watch as seated man plays an instrument in high school classroom.

By Shigeyo Henriquez

We spent the week of September 20th in Sandusky, Ohio. It was sunny and warm; we were lucky to have such nice weather in the middle of September.

I visited the same schools and communities 6 months before with Agatsuma. I am back and glad to see the familiar faces again. The students, teachers and community people are just as I remembered—hospitable, thoughtful and appreciative.

Sightseeing in Chicago

The group poses in street clothes in front of the Cloud Gate sculpture.

By Shigeyo Henriquez

Beauty & Melody arrived in Chicago on September 14. Months and months of preparation for a concert at Harris Theater in Chicago unfortunately had to be canceled. This cancellation was disappointing, but we managed to keep ourselves busy and had fun.

Beauty & Melody - The End of the Tour

The view from backstage in Marquette, Michigan.

By Shigeyo Henriquez, tour manager

After 6 weeks on the road, warm days in Valley City to shivering in snow in Alexandria and Marquette, sunshine, rain and snow and all, the tour came to the end.

Marquette, Michigan

Elementary school workshop in Marquette, Michigan.

By Shigeyo Henriquez, tour manager

Beauty and Melody arrived in Marquette, Michigan early on the evening of Sunday, October 18th. This is our last stop of Arts Midwest World Fest tour.

Marquette is beautiful—filled with fall colors, yellow, red, orange, and tall dark green of evergreens.

Beauty & Melody: Week 4

Teaching the yangqin to Representative Pridemore

By Shigeyo Henriquez, Tour Manager

We are into the fourth week of the tour. We arrived in Hartford, Wisconsin on Sunday evening, October 11th. It was a long drive from Alexandria. Thanks to Joel, our bus driver, for his safe driving.

The first day in Hartford started with a visit to Erin and Neosho elementary schools. The students always amaze me with how well they behave and pay attention to the workshop.

From Aberdeen to Alexandria

Retirement community performance

By Autumn Patterson, Arts Midwest

What an incredibly busy two weeks it has been! In Aberdeen, the group visited not only the local elementary, middle, and high schools, but also the Parkside Retirement Community, and the 3M factory there.

Today, we have two reports from the road—one from Shigeyo, the tour manager, and another from Cai Lingyun, the band’s interpreter.

Conducting Workshops

High school chorus with Beauty & Melody

By Cai Lingyun, Interpreter for Beauty & Melody

In her second guest blog, Cai Lingyun talks about the experience of conducting workshops at schools in Valley City, North Dakota.

From September 21-23, we had 10 workshops for students and kids from high schools, junior high schools, elementary schools and kindergartens. Sometimes, 250 students for one workshop.

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