Daycroft's Halls Ring with Traditional Chinese Music

Weeklong Exploration of Chinese Culture Culminates in Performances by Ann Arbor Chinese Traditional Music Ensemble

ANN ARBOR, MI (February 3, 2009) – In the days immediately following the Chinese New Year on Monday, January 26, students at Daycroft Montessori School (www.daycroft.org) immersed themselves in Chinese customs, crafts, and cuisine.

traditional chinese music ensemble

On Friday, January 30, the week's cultural exploration culminated in performances and demonstrations by the five-piece Ann Arbor Chinese Traditional Music Ensemble (View Yahoo Group Site).

The ensemble played at Daycroft's elementary school campus on Zeeb Road. The group's members include Master Kevin Liu on pipa, Mou-chi Cheng on percussion, Wan-Thai Hsu on dizi, Li Yi on erhu, and Yizhou Zhou on zheng.

Wan-Thai Hsu and Queenie Tsai, parents of Daycroft students Harrison Hsu (3rd grade) and Vincent Hsu (kindergarten), organized the musical event. The program began with an introduction to traditional Chinese music by Wan-Thai Hsu. The ensemble then performed "General Command," told a brief history of Chinese music, demonstrated their instruments, and answered students' questions.

Master Kevin Liu, recognized as one of the world's leading pipa instrumentalists, followed with a solo performance. The ensemble then played an encore, "Golden Snake Dancing." After the program, Master Kevin Liu remained at Daycroft for more in-depth demonstrations of the pipa with the school's 5th and 6th graders and Cheryl Theis, their music teacher.

"Our Chinese New Year events are just one way we celebrate cultural diversity at Daycroft," said Diane Mukkala, Daycroft's head of school. Mukkala cited other examples:

  • This past fall, Daycroft students learned about Diwali, the major Hindu holiday also known as the Festival of Lights.
  • The theme of this year's Culture Day program at Daycroft's elementary school is a schoolwide science fair, to be held this Friday, February 6. Daycroft students will teach each other what they learned from their experiments, and present their findings to parents.
  • Later this month – on Thursday, February 19 – students at Daycroft's preprimary school on Oakbrook Drive will hold a Cultural Night program called "Safari Adventure" telling in songs and words about wildlife from all continents of the world. Families will bring dishes from their native countries to be shared after the program.

About Daycroft Montessori School

Daycroft Montessori School is one of Washtenaw County’s leading independent schools. It began as a preschool program in 1968. Since then, Daycroft has grown to include a full-day kindergarten program, an elementary school program through 6th grade, before-school and after-school care, summer camp programs, and enrichment classes.

Daycroft Elementary School (grades K through 6) and Daycroft’s administrative offices are located at 1095 N. Zeeb Rd., Ann Arbor, MI 48103. Phone: (734) 662-3335.

Daycroft Preprimary School (preschool and kindergarten) is at 100 E. Oakbrook Dr., Ann Arbor, MI 48104. Phone: (734) 930-0333.

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Media Contact:
Chris Kochmanski
DesignHub, Inc.
(734) 944-8705
chris@design-hub.com

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