Monday, August 5, 2013

July 19th: The Koreans - Our Final, Final Gig!

Our time was cut short when we were called to board the bus for the last time. Our last show was for the Korean Exporters Association at Sofitel Hotel...a strange, last-minute request that happened to be added on to the last day of our tour. Honestly, we all felt apprehensive about this final performance, since we were placed with an odd amalgam of drummers, salsa dancers, and a "Gangnam Style" singing group. Also, at this point in time, we were all so exhausted from a full day of activities and could not wait to have our two days of freedom once the IP Rondalla Tour officially ended. Thus, we told ourselves to make this performance short and sweet.

When we got onstage, though, we were utterly surprised! The Korean businessmen with their wives and children were so intrigued by our group! Everywhere, you could see cameras, iPods, and cellphones, all held in different angles so that they could videotape our show with the least amount of blockage. I may be joking, but it was as if they were scrambling to get the best seats in the house. When we played songs like "Raindrops Keep Falling on My Head" and "Maria Cristina," they couldn't take their eyes off of us, and by the time we took our final bow, they couldn't stop enthusiastically clapping for us! It was like we were a rare, ethnic species never seen before by the human eye. I felt shocked but also humored by their fascination with our oddly-shaped instruments and Filipino-American music and dance moves. It was definitely ah, let's say...a unique ending to our colorful tour.

I guess after seeing (and being bombarded by) a lot of contemporary, pop, hip-hop, and other Americanized performances, for these Korean audience, the sweet, delicate sound of rondalla music was such a welcome respite.

The IP Rondalla kids sitting and waiting our turn at one of the dining tables before practicing on-stage at Sofitel Hotel

After the surprisingly successful show with the Koreans at Sofitel Hotel (*Kudos to JR for making the BIGGEST smile onstage*), all of us dashed backstage like little, jittery kids, finally set free from our parents' reins. That was it. No more performances. Just two days of family time and a plane ride back home. That's it. Done.

As nice and relaxing as that sounded, we were all crestfallen by the time we got our stuff to leave the room. Some of us were weeping. All of us tightly hugged each other. As we stood by the bus to get our bags, we could feel an air of sadness. Although we would still be seeing each other in America, at the hotel, and on the airplane ride back home, it wasn't going to be the same. We all shared an experience that just couldn't be reproduced elsewhere - a memory that was truly ours and ours alone. These last three weeks will truly be missed by us all.

Although this is the end of our show, I'm sure this won't be the last you'll hear from us...we're looking forward to doing this again in the Philippines! It's just the beginning, so watch out for the next IP Rondalla Tour!

Thanks a ton for these three weeks of nonstop performances.

Sierra Jamir

Now, lets talk about that vacation of ours, shall we? Oh right...did I hear another R&R?

To be Continued...(don't worry, this blog is definitely not finished...onward to new adventures)

No comments:

Post a Comment