M.C. Perry, Japanese students spread holiday spirit throughout MCAS Iwakuni
MARINE CORPS AIR STATION IWAKUNI, Japan -- Students from Matthew C. Perry Schools hosted their annual holiday celebration concert at the Sakura Assembly Hall at Marine Corps Air Station Iwakuni, Japan, Dec. 7, 2016.
The concert showcased various musical groups from M.C. Perry and brought base residents, students and staff from Suo-Oshima Municipal Elementary School, Waki Junior High School and Otake Municipal Ogata Junior High School together.
“The significance of the concert was for the kids to portray and perform what they have worked on throughout the semester and celebrate the holidays,” said Allen Strawbridge, the music director at M.C. Perry High School.
To start the concert, the symphonic band played “Angels We Have Heard on High” to approximately 300 guests inside the theater.
The Samurai choir then played “Down In The Valley,” “Carol of the Bells,” and “Elijah Rock.”
“I enjoyed seeing the kids’ hard work pay off because they came together to make this happen,” said Strawbridge. “We practiced throughout the week with morning and afternoon rehearsals and put in hours of practice.”
Guests then enjoyed more performances by the concert band, M.C. Perry Voices, the Pentatonix, and the symphonic band, which featured songs such as “Jingle Bells,” “Ode To Joy,” “We Wish You A Merry Christmas,” and “White Winter.”
“I like participating,” said Makenzie Schmitz, a ninth-grader at M.C. Perry High School and Pentatonix performer. “I have been a part of this concert for three years now and performing with the Japanese is always fun. I believe the concert gets better every year.”
At the concert finale, performers and Japanese guests gathered on stage and encouraged the audience to sing along to “White Christmas” before exchanging gift bags to end the night.
“It was a good experience being able to engage in this event together,” said Rion Miyake, a seventh-grader from Otake Municipal Ogata Junior High School. “I like how we were able to join and participate in a sing-along for the finale. I want to come back next year, and I had a great time.”