During spring break 2019, LJCDS students and faculty embarked on memorable explorations around the world, including trips to China, Belize, Hawaii and Kentucky.
China: Twenty-three students from Grades 8–12 traveled to Beijing and Xi’an to immerse themselves in Chinese history and culture. With visits to world-famous cultural sites such as the Great Wall of China, the Terracotta Army, Tiananmen Square and the Forbidden City, students learned about the rich history of China up close. They also dined in a farmer’s home and took kung fu lessons. Students learning Mandarin had a chance to apply their language skills while interacting with locals.
Belize: Twenty-two students from Grades 7 and 8 took part in a Collaborative Leadership Program led by the World Leadership School in Belize. The program empowered students to learn more about their individual leadership styles in the context of global issues affecting Belize. They explored the Mayan ruins; went cave tubing and hiking in the jungle; visited an iguana sanctuary and took a night tour of the Belize zoo; snorkeled on Tobacco Caye; and participated in a reef clean-up, collecting 73 pounds of garbage in one day!
Hawaii: Twenty-five students from Grades 9–12, (12 orchestra musicians, 10 choir and three band members) traveled to Honolulu to perform and learn about Hawaiian culture and history. Memorable events included a walk through the USS Bowfin Submarine Museum & Park, a hike to the peak of Diamond Head, and a visit to the Polynesian Cultural Center. They explored the University of Hawai’i campus and participated in orchestra and choir workshops where they received valuable feedback.
Students performed along the water’s edge of Pearl Harbor, at the Ala Moana Center, one of the largest malls in the country, and on the last day of the trip, at Kapunahala Elementary School. When the orchestra played a joyful medley of songs from the movie Moana, the elementary students burst into song.
Kentucky: Five Upper Schoolers attended the United States Institute for Theatrical Technology (USITT) Conference in Louisville. They took classes and workshops on various topics such as women in technical theater, how to make a severed head for the stage, gender and costuming, positive failure, and sustainable lighting. Students had an opportunity to network with industry reps, college professors and summer stock theater companies.
One highlight included having lunch with Matt Williams, co-owner and president of BMI Supply, one of the largest theatrical supply houses in the country. He shared his stories from the theater business and the value of having a sales team made up of artists. The conference exposed the students to the many viable entry points into a career in the theater industry and provided an opportunity to make connections.