Saturday, February 15, 2014

Arctic Orff

I can talk for hours about how music is the voice of the soul, the helpmate of intelligence, the pulse of the feeling heart and the connecting tissue between people, but now I have a new take on it: music as survival! Today I danced because I had to to stay warm. Body percussion took on a new dimension to get the blood flowing and help raise the inner temperature. Carrying Orff instruments up six flights of stairs became a welcome way to generate a bit of heat.

The fact is that Hong Kong is freezing! And worse than Finland, Iceland or Alaska in mid-winter because there is no structure for heating rooms! Everyone is taken by surprise. My host did bring me a stylish black winter coat that has me feeling pretty upscale— with a red scarf to boot! But most importantly— I felt warm for the ten minutes I had it on in the car back to the hotel! Oh, joy of joys!

Then I got to strut my stuff walking to the restaurant with my newly-found elegant self and enjoyed a lovely meal with my Orff friends Kalms and Manchi (and her husband and baby to be). While eating mango pudding shaped like a fish and fried banana, I took out the camera to take a picture of my plate for my kids at the SF School. A silly in-house joke— everytime I ask them to take off F and B from the xylophones, I say “Remove the fish and bananas.” Now I can just show them the photo.

Now back in the hotel planning tomorrow’s classes. If this weather keeps up, I think we’ll be doing a lot of jumping dances, contact improv., vigorous drumming, body percussion with gloves and mittens—whatever it takes to survive the cold.

Or maybe I’ll just keep my borrowed coat on and give a lecture on the elegance of Orff Schulwerk.

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