16 and 17 September 2015 - Jablonec
Saturday, 17th October 2015
The past two days whizzed past in a blur! We are not the only guest choir here in Jablonec to celebrate iuventus Gaude's 10th anniversary. Also here is the Lielvarde Children's Chorus from Latvia. The logistics of hosting so many people at once, catering for everyone's specific needs, and the uncooperative weather conditions, made for MANY changes in plans, and at times we felt a little bit like a flock of sheep being herded backwards and forwards in preparation for the international sheep dog championships! Somehow it all worked out though, and with the great bunch of kids that we have here, we managed quite capably.
Our first stop on Friday morning was at the Swarovsky factory, where the children were able to make some bracelets and necklaces to take home. We were pleasantly surprised to see even the bigger boys participating enthusiastically, and really like the results of their labours!
From there it was off to a school in neighboring Liberec for lunch, before going back to the music school for a rest and warm-up. The latter part of the afternoon was spent rehearsing in the town theatre for our performance, as well as for the mass performance at the end of the evening.
The concert was a happy affair, with the first half spent on Iuventus Gaude's celebrations. Unfortunately all the proceedings were in Czech, so we are unable to tell you exactly what happend. It seemed to be a happy affair, though.
The Lielvarde Children's Choir recently won a gold medal at the World Choir Games in Riga and gave a very polished performance of some of their traditional music. They have a very interesting costume.
Lionel said in the bus today that the thing he will remember about this tour was that the choir sang consistently well throughout the tour and it is true that, even in the non-ideal acoustics last night, they sang their hearts out and brought the house down (or up into a standing ovation) after Sithi Alleluia, with the entire traditional programme bringing endless applause.
This morning we visited the Trosky Castle - ruins of a castle dating back to the 1300's. Even though it is still overcast, we enjoyed the views from the top and the physical activity was good after being indoors most of yesterday. Lunch at the local restaurant was most welcome after the fresh air and exercise!
Unfortunately our trip to the Czech Paradise did not realise, but the kids had another chance to do some shopping, which is always a popular choice. Tonight we spend in our families before our last two performances (and our last full day in the Czech Republic) tomorrow.