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10 April

Page history last edited by PBworks 18 years, 1 month ago

Monday 10th AprilArabella Churchill


The Programme:


9.00-10.00 a.m: SHOW 12 at Baznas Traditional School for Muslim Aid


5.00-6.00 pm: SHOW 13 AT TVRI Camp


The Diary


Dedi comes to collect us at 8.30, and we head to Baznas School. We were originally meant to work at this school on Saturday afternoon, but apparently they asked Muslim Aid if we could come on Monday morning instead. The address has been changed for some reason, and we ask Dedy to head to the new address. It is quite a long way out of the centre of town, so we decide we will ask Dedy to remain for the show and then drive us back again - we can't do workshops here as apparently there are going to be 150-200 children.


A lockout


We get a bit lost on the way, and Dedy asks many different people for directions - and eventually we arrive at what is a bit of rundown school. The main doors are locked, and there is no one in sight at all. We go round the side and find some people, and they say, "No, school closed today - holiday - Mohammed's birthday!" We knew it was a holiday today - many of the shops we have passed on the way are shut, but some things are open. As this is a "Daya", a religious boarding school for orphans and children from very poor families, we had assumed that we would be working with the children where they sleep rather than where they actually go to school. Anyway nothing seems to be happening here at the main educational school, and none of the few adults here seem to know anything about us - so we ring Muchtar of Muslim Aid and say, "Hi! We're at the address you gave us, but there's not a child in sight!" Muchtar speaks to the school people and to Dedy, and we set off again.


Performance in a Mosque, then?


We land up at a small house, about a kilometre away, and, hurray, someone seems to be expecting us - there are even a few children! A man comes and says, "Here are 21 children", so I think that's it - "OK", we say, we'll do a show here for the 21". "Oh, no", says the man, "There are 5 different boarding houses - there will be 150 children." "Oh great", we say, "Where are we going to do the show?" "Follow me!", says the man. So we get into the taxi again and follow the man in the van, and we land up at a beautiful Mosque. Masses of children are appearing and pouring into the Mosque. We get out of the taxi, and ask where we should do the show. The man tells us we should do it in the Mosque! "Are you sure?", we ask - as it seems unlikely that we would be allowed to do the show in a Mosque. He assures us that's where we should do the show. "OK", we say, and we start getting all Haggis's props out of the taxi boot.


The Mosque is a lovely building and we would love to do a show in it, but it doesn't seem right somehow. Just as we are about to start moving the props into the Mosque, a beautiful lady dressed all in beige turns up. She speaks some English, which is great. She is very religious and when offered Haggis's hand to shake, says firmly she cannot shake hands with him - but she clasps my proffered hand warmly in both of hers. "Where are you doing the show?", she asks. I tell her that the man has said we should do it in the Mosque. She looks deeply shocked, and I try to explain this was not our decision, but what the man said. Clearly, doing it in the Mosque is not a good idea, just as we had thought. Where then? "Here?", the lady asks. But no - for "here" is a car park with absolutely no shade - not only would Haggis suffer but all the children would suffer - it is far too hot to do the show outside without shade.


Back to the building we first arrived at


"Follow me!", says the lady and we walk round the Mosque and down the road, followed by all the children, and hey!, we're back at the original school building we first arrived at! The runaround has taken 45 minutes, and here we are, back at base 1. Hey ho! At least now there are children! We are led up to the first floor, to a very dilapidated but big classroom - all the children leap for the chairs and turn themselves into an audience. Unfortunately there is only power for our music one end of the room and all the children are facing the wrong way! Everyone turns around, with a huge scuffling of chairs, Haggis goes off to change in another classroom and I get the sound set up, and we're off into the show!


Juggling with a low ceiling



The children are a fantastic audience, and are completely "with" Haggis from the very first moment. The boys at the back are all so excited that they climb onto the desks in order to see better, but the teachers don't seem to mind, luckily! The girls are at the front and the boys at the back and they are both loving it. The hat routine goes down a storm. One of the balls from the five ball trick (when the children throw the different balls to Hags to put into the pattern) goes out of the window and has to be rescued. The ceiling is not very high, so Haggis has to do the 7-ball routine on his knees, which gets his costume very dirty. The club routine to the Saw Doctors' "Pied Piper" goes particularly well, and the children are all clapping their hands in time to Toni Basil's "Hey Micky" which orchestrates the fire finale. He has to grab a couple of the burning fire sticks to his chest during the fire routing, to stop them falling to the floor, and gets his shirt a bit blackish. A dirty show, but a very good one! Some washing needs to be done before this afternoon's show - more "Rinso" needed!


After the show, while Haggis goes off to change, the children keep shouting something at me - I eventually work out that they want more music, so I put "Hey Micky" on again, which they seem to love. So a long, long time to get to the right place, but a great show once we're back where we were meant to be! We tell them we will return in December if we can.


Clapping heard in London


A couple of Muslim Aid workers have turned up, with more Muslim Aid stickers for us to display and a large Muslim Aid banner that they string up. Apparently Fadlullah Wilmott (the head of Muslim Aid in Aceh) rang from London in the middle of the show to find out how we were doing, and was happy to hear the excited clapping and cheers of the audience. He wants us to email him some of our pictures of gigs we have done for Muslim Aid - I'll try to do that at lunchtime.


On the way back to the hotel, we stop at a supermarket and stock up with more "Rinso" for washing, isotonic drinks, fruit juice and water for the mini fridge in our room, loo paper and more "begone" Baygon insect repellant. I catch up with the diary and cut out 200 badge centres and Hags makes some more beanbags as the original 100 we had made have been depleted to only 40 - and we will need beanbags as well as badges at the TVRI camp later this afternoon. Off to lunch soon, and will post this up on the web then.







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