NO. 818

The TKU ‘Blessings for Japan’ Concert

At lunchtime on the 23rd of March, a ‘Blessings for Japan’ Concert was held at the Fu Yuan Garden of TKU’s Tamsui Campus. Students planning to attend were encouraged to wear yellow clothes or bring yellow accessories as a sign of offering blessings to those affected by the recent disasters in Japan (In Chinese culture, yellow symbolizes positive blessings). 50 students from the TKU Department of Information and Library Science bordered the square patch of grass at the immaculately landscaped Fu Yuan Gardens, holding signs that read ‘‘Japan, We Send Our Love’’. In the middle of the grass field sat a student orchestra, with members that held violins, cellos, clarinets. A conductor stood in front of them, waving his hands emphatically, and led them in the performance of Satoshi Yagisawa’s inspirational classic, ‘‘Hymn to the Sun with the Beat of Mother Earth’’. By now, the streets surrounding the Fu Yuan Gardens thronged with students, many of whom stood on their tiptoes to get a better view. The symphony concert was followed by a minute’s silence for those in Japan who had lost loved ones.

The TKU choir then sang ‘‘A Thousand Winds’’ by the Japanese singer-songwriter, Arai Man. As part of the concert program, TKU students also handed ‘blessings cards’ to ten students who represented the entire contingent of Japanese exchange and international students at TKU. One of the student representatives gave a speech. She expressed her gratitude for all the warmth and concerned care she and her fellow Japanese students had received from Tamkang students. After her speech, the emcee read out a poem that had been written by TKU’s Extracurricular Activity Section. The poem ended with the line “We are willing to stand silently by your side. We are one family!” The final performance saw a group of students clad in yellow sing the song ‘‘Love is Grand’’, with accompanying dance moves. The program concluded as the entire body of TKU students and teachers chorused the slogan ‘‘Japan, We Send Our Love!’’

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