Saturday, March 10, 2012

It's hard to believe that the week is already over!

This morning the HONO bunkhouse is alive with the sounds of packing and preparations for departure - the last few days have been exciting, fulfilling and alternatively magical and inspiring for the team. 

Thursday we finished our after school arts program at the YMCA with a performance by our students for their peers and parents.  Performances ranged from demonstrations of "The Human Knot" to Salsa dancing!  In the end, every teaching team's group had their moment up on stage.  Afterwards, the school's impressive marching band gave us an impromptu performance on the street outside. 

Earlier in the day, we had a performance of our own - a show right on the Habitat for Humanity worksite.  Mike and other volunteers built us a stage with the same materials we were using to complete the house.  Our progress in our short three days on site - roof beams, insulation, Tyvek, and windows - was evident in the background of performances including the actors' hilarious improv game, Philip's "If I Loved You", and other group collaborations. Even with the quirks of a passing motorcycle and helicopter, the team enjoyed being able to present a show to other volunteers we've come in contact with over the week.

Yesterday we concluded our "workweek" with a day of masterclasses at NOCCA. Because Houston's High School for the Performing and Visual Arts (HSPVA) happened to be visiting the school on the same day, the classical musicians got an extra bonus of working with their students in their respective instrumental masterclasses in the morning. After recharging with Brian's delicious jambalaya, the whole team split up in their respective divisions to work with NOCCA's students for the afternoon. Overall, it was a great way to end the week.

We celebrated the week's accomplishments with a team dinner at Mulate's, where Gia and Midori got certified in Cajun dancing as our one-and-only Chelsea performed on the fiddle with the band! It was an exciting night for the whole team, and a perfect way to end the trip.

Until next year, New Orleans!

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