Canadian Standard English (CSE)
Every year, we can always tell when art festival is coming. For the weeks leading up to the festival, students begin mysteriously disappearing from our classes. At lunch, you’ll hear the familiar sound of saxophones and zithers echoing throughout the school. The white walls surrounding the school get a facelift of colourful paintings. Then finally the day comes, and it’s quite the spectacle. For starters, it’s strange seeing your students whom you’ve seen wearing the same blue and white uniform everyday for the past seven months suddenly wearing not only their own clothes, but their hair is down and they’re wearing make up. And they get on stage and begin to perform and some of the acts are amazing. You wouldn’t believe that someone who’s been sitting silently at the back of your class all year is an amazing pianist, or acrobat, painter, dancer, actor. It’s incredible. When you go in and teach the same students for so long, you forget that these students have a life outside of school, and have talents other than speaking English. And talent they have and such a variety as well. There’s always a wide range of traditional Chinese art forms mixed with modern acts. This year some highlights included a communist era acrobatic dance, two latin dancers mamboing to Hotel California and, my personal favourite, a boy breakdancing and “turning down” to Lil John. The parents are often there as well, beaming with pride as they watch their children on stage, performing with such life and energy. With this year’s festivities finally over, things will get back to normal. But I’m sure everyone is already looking forward to next years’s art festival!