Saturday, December 24, 2011

Christmas Song Festival

My school just finished up the much-anticipated Christmas Song Festival, which was heartwarming in all the ways that seven-year-olds singing "Santa Claus is Coming to Town" can possibly be (and more).  Behold, the festival program!  (Warning: there is loads of YouTube embedded in here, apologies in advance if it chokes your computer.)

"Happy!" by Mocca

This one was performed by two classes.

First, my youngest and lowest-level class (except the girl in the back, Pisa, who is an English genius and also Travis' best friend at this school).

And from the second round of the older elementary school kids (who ended up winning their "division").  At the line about "life is a bowl of cherries," they actually threw cherry candy into the audience.  A cute idea, but also a potentially deadly one.

"Santa Claus is Coming to Town," by Mariah Carey or Justin Bieber

The version performed depended on the class, two of them used Mariah Carey's version but one class used (grudgingly) Justin Bieber's version.

For the full creepy effect, here's the Mariah Carey video they used (they set up a laptop with a projector to display the video and lyrics for the students to sing along to).  I apologize in advance for the nightmares this is about to fuel.

One of my younger advanced classes, they're all adorable students and very chatty.  They won their "division" on the first day of the festival.  One of the girls (not pictured) also sang Mariah Carey's "All I Want For Christmas Is You."  Alas, I don't have a picture of it.

One of my "intermediate" (the school calls it "Step 2") classes.  They also won their division, for which I am thankful, because I think Travis (all the way on the left) may have had a meltdown otherwise.  He came close to one after a very awkward solo and a cappella performance of "Sorry Sorry" (individual students could also opt to perform as a sort of talent show, if they wanted).  From left to right: Travis, Sophia, Jasmine, Timmy, Diane, Cindy, Lina.

But look how happy Travis is during it all!  And he's a pretty good little dancer.  Just not a very good singer. Plus contemporary K-pop doesn't sound all that good without synths and such.

The other boy in that class, Timmy, also did a solo a cappella performance, which was much less awkward.  I think it was my favorite piece of the entire day, because Timmy is a consummate performer.  Bonus points: one of the slightly incomprehensible quotes that are showcased all over the building: "After death, to call the doctor."

Two of the girls from that class (Cindy and Jasmine) also did a duet of Avril Lavigne's "What The Hell."

"You say I'm messing with your head / Because I was making out with your friend....You say I'm messing with your head / I like messing in your bed"  Think about those lyrics, and then go back and look at the picture to see exactly how tiny they are.  But Cindy is funny little diva (and English genius to boot), I wish I had a picture of this performance. Another picture I'll have to wait to borrow from the school's website.

This class used Justin Bieber's version of The Worst Christmas Song of All Time, which is basically the same as the Mariah Carey version.  They were miserable the entire time, though, so instead I opted for a picture of them during the talent show: recreating a skit from a Korean variety show (in Korean), which they did VERY well.  I about peed myself laughing.  The smaller girl, Alice, however, is a pretty good little dancer and got a special spirit award for doing such a good job with it during their otherwise lackluster dance routine.  I didn't get a picture of that (but I hope to gank one from the school's website some time next week).

"Jingle Bell Rock," Bobby Helms

Two classes chose this song.

And here's the only class who performed it that I actually teach:

From left to right: Albert (who showed off his hula hoop skills), Tom (who gave a solo recorder performance of "Roly Poly" by the K-pop girl group T-ara), Mark (who acted like a crazy banshee the whole time, to the point where the other boys actually took it upon themselves to restrain him), Leo, Paul, Alex (number one nose-picker), Sally, and Amy.

"I Like to Move It," Reel 2 Real

Though the video they used was from Madagascar, the song sounded like the original and not the version from the Madagascar OST so who knows.

One class performed this, and a few of the boys from one of the basic classes (that I don't teach) also did a tae kwon do routine set to this, for which they won first place.

Another intermediate class. The little boy in the big coat in the back is Harry, and his enthusiasm for everything is absolutely uncontainable.  His Korean teacher said he got into a fight with one of the other boys the day before because he wasn't being excited enough.  He's adorable.

But really, the winner for "most awkward" performance had to go to the only older advanced class to participate.  Or rather, "participate":  One of the kids actually sung (and rather enthusiastically) while the rest hung back and looked embarrassed.  I guess middle school is too old for anglophone pop song talent shows?

Maroon 5, "This Love"

Again, think about the lyrics to this one: "I tried my best to feed her appetite / Keep her coming every night / So hard to keep her satisfied..." and "My pressure on your hips /  Sinking my fingertips / Into every inch of you / Cause I know that's what you want me to do..."

And then instead of Adam Levine singing, you have this:

The other teachers and I couldn't contain ourselves.  Giggle fits ensued.

And here's what I wish they had sung:

"Father Christmas," The Kinks

John Lennon, "Happy Xmas, War is Over"

(Not the original music video, since that one's kind of NSFW with gory war images and all.  You can watch in public at ease.)

The Jackson 5, "Santa Claus is Coming to Town"

(The only version of this song I actually enjoy, because it's funky enough that I can ignore the creepy/emotionally abusive lyrics, though there's no small amount of irony in the fact that it comes from one of the most exploited child stars of all time.)

Now I'm off to LotteMart, as I owe some people my trademark "way too much whisky" whisky chocolate truffles and I need to get cracking.

Merry Christmas!

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