On April 2nd, the BSS Friendship Touring Ensemble traveled to the Chang Zhou Foreign Language School. Chang Zhou is Buffalo’s Sister City so this was a special experience for everyone involved. We engaged in an exchange concert with students from the middle school. They performed first on tradition Chinese instruments, such as the zheng, and we followed with our concert program. The BSS Friendship Touring Ensemble motto – “World Harmony Through Music” – shined brightly through the concert hall.
The Chinese students presented their culture through their music and instrument choice and we shared our U.S. culture through our culture and string instruments. Despite the differences in our ages and the types of music we were playing, I could see the same passion for music in their eyes. Music truly is a bridge that can connect people from all different backgrounds. The most exciting moment for me in the concert was the audience reaction when we played Jasmine Flower. The students’ faces lit up when we started to play the familiar Chinese folk song. After we performed the piece once, we invited the students to join in and sing along. Some of the student had already been singing along or mouthing the words the first time because they couldn’t help themselves. The atmosphere of the concert hall at that instant was filled with joy, excitement, and an overall sense of friendship.
By Arya Pindiprolu