(London)derry Day 2

Today was the 2nd day in Derry.

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Here’s what we did!

1. Ate delicious breakfast. There was a pancake machine which was amazing.

2. We had a walking tour of Derry, where we learned about the the history of the city, complete with all of the tensions between Protestants and Catholics, and Northern Ireland vs. The Republic. I don’t feel qualified to represent all the knowledge we learned, but it was definitely an eye-opening experience to learn so much about the RECENT bloodshed and civil war. The tour guide was a war child during the whole thing and it was absolutely fascinating to learn about all of the intensity from someone who had experienced it all firsthand. We drove past some graffiti art representing the events, walked along the wall, and ended the tour with the award-winning Tower Museum. I give it an A+

We returned to the hotel for a light lunch for sandwiches and then all individually departed for chamber music dress rehearsals at St. Columb’s Cathedral, where we had a 2pm chamber concert. The groups played amazingly. I am so proud of all of them!

4. After the concert, we had free time. Some people went to eat more, spend the last of our sterling pounds, or rest.

5. We had a delicious dinner again at the hotel.

6. We departed for our 2nd full-ensemble concert at the Playhouse Derry. MYWE played stunningly. I am so proud of them AGAIN! The concert was very well received. A representative from the national orchestra came and said that we were the first ‘wind band’ (european term for wind ensemble, virtually) that had moved her. Also, Ben Hartman (euphonium)’s little relatives sat still for a concert for the first time! :)

7. We are having some free time tonight before packing up and leaving Derry tomorrow. We depart very early for Westport tomorrow.

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A few notes from some of our students!

Akshitha Ramachandran, 15 years old from Winchester, MA

What is your favorite part of the tour so far?
Sightseeing and seeing all the picturesque views of island.

What are you looking forward to for the remainder of the tour?
More performances and imbibing more Irish culture.

What is something eye-opening for you about Irish culture?
How cordially people are in general. A 14 yr old girl talked to us for an hour an a half yesterday!

Dhanya Kumar, 18 years old from Shrewsbury, MA

What is your favorite part of the tour so far?
Talking to Irish school girls and learning what they watch on TV and what music they listen to.

What are you looking forward to for the remainder of the tour?
I hope to visit where game of thrones takes place.

What is something eye-opening for you about Irish culture?
Yesterday I learned instead of “what’s up” they say “what’s the crack?”

Tevin Li, 16 years old, Lexington, MA

What is your favorite part of the tour so far?
Just playing.

What are you looking forward to for the remainder of the tour?
More playing.

What is something eye-opening for you about Irish culture?
Honestly, right before my trip my younger brother kept asking me ‘is everyone in Ireland white and pale, named Seamus and have weird accents?’ I’ve learned that there are a lot of similarities between the Irish and Americans. The Irish are much different than as portrayed in the media.

Allen Yang, 16 years old from Jamaica Plain, MA

What is your favorite part of the tour so far?
The fireworks.

What are you looking forward to for the remainder of the tour?
Performing in more venues. Experiencing Ireland more.

What is something eye-opening for you about Irish culture?
There are not many Asian people around. It’s not as diverse as Boston.

Brian Rappaport, 18 years old from Wellesley, MA

What is your favorite part of the tour so far?
I very much liked Derry (Londonderry) and the European feel. Nice vibe. I enjoyed playing the concerts

What are you looking forward to for the remainder of the tour?
More concerts  and seeing more of Ireland.

What is something eye-opening for you about Irish culture?
I did not understand the degree to which the “troubles” and the separation of UK and Rep of Ireland impacted Irish life especially in Derry. It’s not something I’ve ever really known anything about and I found it very eye-opening.

Morgan Jackson, 17 years old, from Arlington, MA

What is your favorite part of the tour so far?
Exploring the walls of Derry and finding random hole-in-the-wall shops everywhere

What are you looking forward to for the remainder of the tour?
I’m really excited to visit Limerick, I’ve heard its a cool bohemian city!

What is something eye-opening for you about Irish culture?
The fact that it’s called “take-away” rather than take-out foods. Also the difference is striking- European sodas have real sugar and Fanta is made with real oranges. Like, what? Why don’t we have that in the US? It’s so much better!

Katharine Silva, 17 years old from Brookline, MA

What is your favorite part of the tour so far?
Getting to explore Dublin and Derry!

What are you looking forward to for the remainder of the tour?
Seeing the Cliffs of Moher- they sound beautiful

What is something eye-opening for you about Irish culture?
I’m still trying to figure out how to cross the streets

Colin Roshak, 18 years old from Boston, MA (Walnut Hill student)

What is your favorite part of the tour so far?
Kebab.

What are you looking forward to for the remainder of the tour?
Going back to get more kebab.

What is something eye-opening for you about Irish culture?
The kebab.

Nicholas Hooks, 18, Merritt Island, FL (Walnut Hill student)

What is your favorite part of the tour so far?
Having local Irish people come and see our performance.

What are you looking forward to for the remainder of the tour?
Definitely seeing more sights of Ireland and getting to know the culture

What is something eye-opening for you about Irish culture?
The amount of Middle Eastern restaurants that are sprinkled throughout the wee Irish streets.

Kristen Ingraham, 17 years old from Milton, MA

What is your favorite part of the tour so far? 
Making new friends with other MYWE students. I’ve made friends with people who I’ve never talked to before. This trip has brought us together.

What are you looking forward to for the remainder of the tour?
Tonight’s concert and the joint concert with the Mayo Youth Orchestra.

 

What is something eye-opening for you about Irish culture?
People are friendlier here. I’ve never known much about Irish history so it was interesting to visit the ulster museum and the history of Derry itself and the civil.

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Yours in Ireland,

Ana

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