June 24 – Satsumasendai
Our warm and sunny day from two days ago was replaced with wind and pouring rain. It wasn’t a typhoon, but still pretty strong. Once again, the park was our central meeting place for everyone. More hugs, more tearful goodbyes. One of the homestay families accidentally locked their keys in the car – including two of our students’ luggage! A locksmith was called, and although they didn’t make it to the bus, they were able to meet us at the ferry. Yes, a ferry! It is faster to travel by ferry than go back across the bridge and around.
* Arrived at the Satsumasendai Concert Hall. Met the host families, who took the students’ bags for the time being.
* Ate bento box lunches provided by our hosts.
* Rehearsed for an hour. Dr. Chapman ended the rehearsal with “Carry Me Back” and asked the seniors to listen from the audience. Very moving and tearful.
*Dressed in concert attire, took a group photo under out concert banner!
* Full rehearsal with all groups for the finale number, “Sing Sing, Sing.”
* Concert (actually a festival) began at 4:30 pm local – Taiko drum group, elementary band, community band – all were fabulous!!!
* 2nd half – OSU’s final concert was incredible!
* After festival party for all the participants and host families – lots of fun, good mix of food, but very loud!