In June, 30 Honours Band students took part in the longest and most exciting music trip yet as they headed to Japan for ten days. The group teamed up with Ichikawa Subaru High School to perform in a concert at Ichikawa Zennikkei Hall, before performing in a culminating fifteen-minute set with them at Tokyo DisneySea.
Bruce B., Grade 12, wrote about his experience: “As a member of the Board of Directors for Honours Band, my experience on the Japan trip was extremely rewarding. To me, the most "worth-it" part of the trip was the collaboration with Ichikawa Subaru High School. We were embraced by the Japanese students' hospitality, especially the meal prepared by their parents that really helped us establish friendships.
I was truly inspired by the Japanese students' work ethic. Coming from Vancouver, our group were all struggling with the hot and humid weather as we rehearsed together in one room; but the Japanese students were fully dressed in school uniform every single day, running up and down the six-storey building to accommodate us.
As we became closer, I found out that the Japanese students spend hours on their bikes every single day just to go to school and return home. Their school hours are typically from 7:00 am to around 7:00 pm, with two hours of band practice guaranteed every single day. Even on weekends, they rehearse from morning to evening. Witnessing their day-to-day experience really made me reflect.
I was really proud of our band because we all worked extremely hard, perfecting our playing and memorizing all the choreography in just three days. Our performance at Disney Sea was very successful as a result, with a large audience watching.”
Angela S., Grade 12, said: “The Japanese trip was so meaningful because we worked on a huge collaboration with another school band. Japan was just...oh my gosh. The culture is so clean and polite and friendly. It was great to work with people from a different place and culture. Our band was treated like celebrities, with people in line to take pictures and get our autographs."