After last night’s roaring success, most of us didn’t get to bed until quite late. I’ll try to post audio if I can. My hosts and I stayed up until about 2 am talking about life, choral music, and our two cultures. Thankfully, we had a 9:30 departure time, so we could sleep in a little bit (but not much). We said a long, teary goodbye to our wonderful host families from Beek and hopped on the bus for a long drive back to Den Haag.
We arrived in the Hague around noon and stopped for lunch. Professor Costes, Erin K. and I went to an Indonesian restaurant and had their “Rice Table,” which is a huge spread of little dishes…all of which were excellent. By far the best meal we’ve had.
After lunch we drove to the American School in the Hague. The students attending this elite private school are the sons and daughters of Americans living abroad, or well-to-do locals who want their student to have an American educational experience. The students came from all over the world: India, China, Japan, the Middle East, Europe, and all parts in between. The students are very bright, and cultured…a good group to sing to.
First, we watched Dr. Andre Thomas lead a rehearsal with the kids:
Then, we took the stage for a little rehearsal ourselves, followed by a short performance at 4:00 pm. We sang all our “crowd pleasers” as the audience was perhaps not as interested in the Bach or the Petrassi. Again, we got an immediate, prolonged, standing ovation. Afterward, they gave us dinner, and I got a chance to visit with some of the music teachers in the American schools around the globe. They were very complimentary saying that it was good to have their music students exposed to “the highest caliber music making” and that they were grateful that we could show their students “just how much potential they have.” Two different people said, “You changed my opinion of North Dakota!” …too funny. I also spoke with a few students who expressed interest in coming to UND! Pretty incredible if you ask me.
After dinner we hopped on the bus for long drive to Brugge. We arrived late at our hotel, and I think all in all it was a quiet evening. Today, we sing for Mass and have a free day for sight seeing and, of course, shopping.