Tuesday, January 22, 2013

Day 21 - Toasts and Final words

17 toasts to the students of "Listening Live":

To Jonathan, trooper through thick and through thin.
When the going is rough, he holds up his chin.

To Nick, who shows kindness to all he does meet.
He even cares for his teachers, how sweet!

To Scott, who managed a feat most sublime.
He always slept late, but showed up (mostly) on time!

To Shafer, who has proven, without indiscretion,
A talent for finding the proper direction.

To Braun, who willingly rose to the occasion,
Delivering flowers at Antonino's ovation.

To Owen, who wears a mischievous grin.
He knows a secret--his eyes let you in.

To Chris, whose laughter can fill up a room.
He'll shase away feelings of sorrow and gloom.

Here is to Jasmine, who says "No, it's not!"
Without her, our class would have been lacking a lot.

Here's to Miss Filmore, a sprightly young lass.
Go running with her, and she'll kick your ass!

Here is to Jessica, who did not mind the gap,
But kept calm, carried on, and did not make a flap.

Here's to Miss Laura, who had a sore gum.
We are glad that she'll live 'til she's home with her mum.

Here's to Victoria, who likes a good laugh.
Without her along, we'd have had less fun by half.

Here's to Miss Smith, who needs lots of sleep,
But if she's cut short, she complains not a peep.

Here is to Grace, whose last name is Erie.
She is full of grace, and in her quiet way, cheery.

Here is to Maddi, first to wake in the morn.
She is modest and humble, n'er to blow her own horn.

Here is to Ingrid, who plays on the flute.
If you talk to her long, you will know she's a hoot.

Here is to Tani, a blossoming singer.
When she sings Covent Garden, we'll have flowers to bring her.

In one sentence, what was the most memorable musical moment from the past three weeks?

Jean Valjean redeemed
Just beyond the barricade

Hearing the talented pianists performing concerti by both Beethoven and Britten.

I really liked hearing the songs of La Boheme and realizaing how closely linked they were to Rent (the musical).

Finally hearing the piece (SIegfried Idyll) I did so much research on.

Hearing Gangnam Style at the Pantomime/King's College choir. It was almost a transcendent experience. So beautiful!

"Stars" and "Bring him home" at Les Mis--best performances seen live of each!

Hearing the gong during the Gamelan workshop.

Getting choked up at the end of Les Miserables.

Hearing the Celtic music with the fiddle, penny whistle and bagpipes. I got the goosebumps!

Beginning of "Night Ferry." I was immediately on the edge of my seat.

Seeing "The Nutcracker."

I loved hearing "Night Ferry" and being able to see Anna Clyne, the composer.

Almost every moment in Les Mis was my favorite, but Enjorlas was the best!

My favorite musical moment was probably Les Mis--especially Fantine's death. It was so well connected to the audience.

My favorite musical moment was actually learning how to play the fiddle. It's not everyday that you're able to have musical opportunities like that.

My favorite musical memory was the opportunity to see Les Mis. The music was so powerful and the singing was phenomenal.

Day 20 - Back to London

My name is Jessica Edblom. I’m a senior Communication Studies major with a minor in Spanish at Luther. Last J-Term, I had the opportunity to travel abroad, heading down south to Argentina and Chile for my Spanish minor, and I absolutely loved it! There was no way I could pass up another change to travel abroad this year. I have always been curious about the music major whilst at Luther, and having dreamt about traveling to England all my life, there was no way I was going to pass this trip up. That being said, I have the honor of writing the last student blog post for Listening Live in London.

If you have been regularly following this blog, dictating our daily excitement in the UK, there is no denying that we’re had an incredible time. Between the variety of musical performances we attended, daily places we visited, and memories we made with friends, it is 3 weeks we won’t quickly forget. Needless to say, we’re all sad that our time here is so rapidly coming to an end. Today, we spend the majority of the morning and afternoon riding a train from Glasgow Central station back to London. The ride was very pleasant, about 6 hours of English countryside views. After we made it safely (and relatively on time) to London Euston, we walked a little ways to the Celtic Hotel. It’s a quaint bed and breakfast with homey rooms and tight winding staircases, which several of us girls struggled to get our suitcases up this afternoon. However, we settled in, and mainly enjoyed a relaxing afternoon.

Once 6 o’clock came around, we walked to a nearby Italian restaurant called Carluccio’s to have one final group meal. The food was absolutely delicious, and everyone shared pasta dishes, bread, and wine. While we ate, the professors surprised us with individual poems written about each student. It was very sweet, and I especially enjoyed the poem about me, which highlighted how I failed to “mind the gap” just the other day. It was a great time, definitely a perfect way to round out the trip.

For those family and friends who have been reading these blogs each day, we hope these have provided you with a small glimpse into our adventures, and I’m sure you will get a more detailed recount when we arrive home tomorrow. So thank you, and see you soon!

Jessica Edblom

PS - shout out to my sister, whose 17th birthday is today. Hope you had a great day!

Monday, January 21, 2013

Day 19 - Loch Lomond and Stirling Castle

So I suppose starting out with introductions is the appropriate way to begin a blog post so here we go: My name is Jasmine. I play the cello. My favorite color is candy apple red. Favorite ice cream flavor is cake batter. I enjoy walks in the park and long luxurious bubble baths, as well as satiric literature. The bubble bath was a lie but I doubt that you're really that interested in my personal biography so I'll cut to the chase.

Today we went on a bus tour, lead by our driver, Patrick. We drove up to Luss, a small village off the shores of Loch Lomond, the largest body of water in England. The Loch is about 42 miles long and it even has a song written about it. We had a lovely sing along session on the bus as well as a rock rendition that I found very...interesting.

Anyway, after that we headed up toward Stirling castle, making a few stops along the way. Some of the more notable ones were the Doune castle and the William Wallace monument. My favorite part of the trip though, was definitely the Stirling castle. It was really beautiful despite the frigid temperature and the snow. I especially liked walking through the re-creation of the royal chambers. 

So yeah. That was our final day in Glasgow. Ended things on a high note for sure (see what I did there?). 

Day 18 - Learning new instruments and Spanish Civil War!

Hello from Listening Live! This is Ingrid and I am currently a junior at Luther. Although I am not a musicmajor or minor I am involved in varsity band and take flute lessons. I am an elementary education major and music has always been a part of my life. Enough about me, moving to the trip, today has been another music filled day. We spent the day learning different traditional folk instruments and attended another concert associated with the Celtic MusicFestival, Celtic Connections.

This morning we woke up and had a great breakfast in the bar of our hostel. We were offered the traditional Scottish food, Haggis, but many of us decided to stick with toast and cereal. After eating a delicious breakfast we headed up to the lounge to discuss what we thought of the concert the night before. Many of us enjoyed hearing traditional Celtic music, but at times we couldn’t figure out what was going on because most of the concert was in Gaelic. After class we headed over to learn some traditional folk instruments including fiddle, mandolin and ukulele.

I had the opportunity to learn fiddle. It was so fun. We learned the make up of the fiddle and spent time learning how to hold the instrument and what note each string was. We started out learning how to play hot cross buns and then when we became more “advanced” we learned twinkletwinkle little star. I loved being able to play a new instrument and take a class with people originally from Scotland.

After the class we ventured out in to Glasgow to find some lunch and do last minute souvenir shopping before heading back to the USA. We found the oldest pub in Glasgow and settled in for some fish and chips and a bacon buttie. I love the atmosphere here and Glasgow and although it is pretty close to London, the culture here is definitely different.

We met up with the class later to head the People’s Palace Museum. It showed the history of Glasgow from the war, to home life to what the people of Glasgow do for fun. We spent a while here learning about what makes up Glasgow and seeing what has changed over the years. The museum also had a conservatory where many of us took a chance to warm up and relax before heading back out into the cold.

Tonight we went to a concert called “Scots in the Spanish Civil War.” It consisted of many different artists who played songs that were either dedicated or written about the war in Spain. I enjoyed the enthusiasm from the audience and the excitement from the performers. The audience was very involved in the performance and it was fun to see how important this concert was to the Scottish audience.

And now we are sitting and reflecting on another great day in Glasgow. I am not looking forward to going home on Wednesday. It has been such a fantastic trip.

Sunday, January 20, 2013

Day 17 - to Glasgow

Greetings...blog readers! Nice to meet you. I'm Ally Fillmore, a sophomore studying art and communications. Lucky for you, I get to do today's blog post to make light of the crazy day that we just had. From forgetting a phone, not minding the gap, getting lost trying to find the station, train delays, today was a little unlucky for some of us. 

My day started around 6:30 am when I had to pull myself out of bed at the Nottingham Holiday Inn. We hopped on a connector train to Glasgow. When we got to the station where we were to switch trains, we got good and found that our next train was delayed...90 minutes later...Yey! The train!

The ride was gorgeous once all of our toes thawed after standing in all of the flurries. We all agreed that the countryside was amazing to see. The different places that we've been to seem very similar. Let's be honest, it's cool being abroad, but buildings are everywhere. It was nice to see what things are like outside of the cities. 

After miles and miles of sheep, snow, streams, countryside, and run down towns we made it to Glasgow. How do I know? I was greated by graffiti saying, "Welcome to Glasgow" as we pulled into the central station. Definitely a different crowd here, maybe it's just because it's a saturday night. 

We're staying in a hostel with all of the girls in one room and all of the guys in one room. Let's just say that it could be worse. After getting settled in, we had a Celtic concert to go to. Definitely a new experience. People speaking in Gaelic, bagpipes, mandolins, fiddles, the works. I loved it until we hit the 3 hour mark of the concert and I mentally checked out. Don't get me wrong, I loved it! But it was a long day! After a chilly walk back, we all crashed in our beds and listened to the glamorous sounds of the hostel. 

We'll see what tomorrow brings!

Saturday, January 19, 2013

Day 16 - Nottingham

    Hello to all of the friends and family reading the Listening Live blog!  My name is Braun Oldenkamp and Ill be reporting on todays activities.  I am a sophomore Music major, and I sing tenor in Collegiate Chorale and play cello at Luther as well as other clubs and activities around the college.  It has been an incredible experience to be on this trip and to have the opportunity to see so many wonderful performances.
    It was really quite nice to have a change of scenery this morning as we all woke up and got ready for breakfast.  While it was a great experience at our Earls Court flats, I think many will agree with me when I say it was really nice to shower in a hotel this morning!  We all had a nice breakfast at the hotel and set off on our own adventures for the day!  Im not certain what everyone set off to do when we parted ways after breakfast, but I know a few people went to a Robin Hood museum.  I have heard nothing but good things about that experience!
    I set off with Laura Peterson, Victoria Peters, and Ingrid Wangaard-Tjornehoj to see some of the local life.  We decided to walk through the city center and go to some shops.  We also ended up at the Victoria Centre, which is an indoor mall.  Dont worry mom, I only bought a pair of jeans!  After we explored that area, it was time to find something to eat for lunch.  The four of us stopped at a restaurant called Capocci.  As it turns out, we were the only customers in the whole place (theres a photo below of the empty restaurant).  We all enjoyed a nice meal there, and returned to the hotel to take a short walking tour to the castle with Dr. Joyce and Dr. Reed.
    We had a short break for more exploration before we went to the flat where the Luther students in the Nottingham program live.  Once there, we learned about the Pantomime that wed be seeing later in the evening.  A man named David was the one to talk to us about the pantomime.  He lives next door to the Luther Nottingham students and received the Spirit of Luther award in 2008.  David was a real treat, and we would see him later at the performance.
    When we left the flat the Luther Nottingham students lived in, we went to a place called Taste of Delhi which is an Indian restaurant (Ive included a picture of some of us seated at the tables).  We waited there for over an hour for our food, but we eventually had to leave to get to the pantomime on time.  Dr. Joyce stayed behind to get the food to go so we could feast at the hotel following the performance.  W arrived at the pantomime on time.
    A pantomime is defined by Wikipedia as a form of musical comedy stage production, designed for families, developed in the UK and mostly performed during the Christmas and New Year season.  Tonight we saw a pantomime about Robin Hood.  It was hilarious and entertaining for all of us, especially through the use of all of the popular songs we recognized.  Pantomime is audience responsive and interactive, at one point we were all on our feet dancing to Gangnam Style!  We all left the theatre in high spirits and went back to the hotel to have Pizza together.  Apparently there was some mix ups and issues at Taste of Delhi, so we ended up having Pizza ordered to the hotel.
    Now, as the snow falls lightly on the city of Nottingham, I say good night to you all.  I look forward to tomorrows journey on the trains to Glasgow.

Friday, January 18, 2013

Day 15 - Cambridge

Hi from the Listening Live crew. My name is Victoria Peters and I'm a sophomore at Luther studying to be a music history major. The trip has been a blast so far and our trip up to Cambridge today was no different.

We had to leave out flat at Earl's Court today, which was a bit bittersweet because it had been our London home for the past 2 weeks, but a change in scenery was needed. It was a hectic start to our morning, packing up our belongings and cleaning out our rooms as well as getting all 19 of us through the tube to Liverpool Street station. Unfortunately, our train arrived and left the station without being announced, so we had to take a later one up to Cambridge. It was nice to leave the city and see there was more out there and the countryside was lovely. We made it to Cambridge and met bus driver Bob who managed to cram all of our luggage into a very small bus and dropped us at Kings College. We then got a very insightful tour around the city and learned about the history of the colleges and university as well as all of the buildings around the city center. We all met as a class and went to a sung eucharist service at the Kings College chapel. The architecure was gorgeous and the boy choir sounded amazing. We then had a great group meal at the Green Man pub before heading off on a two hour bus ride to Nottingham. We all got settled into our hotel and went to sleep excited to explore Nottingham tomorrow!