Last Sunday I went to the Saitama Culture Centre in Minami- Urawa to play a part (albeit a very small minor one) in an English recital of ‘The Ugly Duckling‘, ‘Humpty Dumpty‘, ‘The Three Little Pigs‘ and ‘Do Re Mi“.
However, this was nothing to do with my day-job but voluntary (though slightly enforced!) assistance for Ai who doesn’t just work in a top Tokyo hotel but also has her own English school. She runs this from the basement of her parents house along with her sisters piano school which was also doing a performance in unison with her own one. This school is essentially a nice, small, friendly local school for the kids in their village and one or two others.
This was basically a bi-annual performance put on for the sake of the students’ parents getting the chance to see their young ones in action on stage.
The piano side of things took up most of the time and then seven of Ai’s students took over for the remainder before being joined by all the pianists for a rendition or two of ‘Do Re Mi‘. My contribution was short and just involved working the on-stage projector via clicking on the computer mouse after each line was read to display a new picture to compliment the students reading. The kind of job any muppet could do really but Ai insisted that it was a job for a native English speaker. That part ran smoothly thankfully apart from Ai’s laptop running out of battery power just prior to the performance. Luckily I discovered this during the intermission and she could drive the short distance home and back to collect the plug adapter lead.
Overall, I was very pleased to see and hear such young talents and very proud of Ai for organising such an event as well as running the school on top of an already heavy workload at her hotel.