North Platte and Up With People have a long history together. First National Bank of North Platte has been sponsoring the groups' trips to town for more than thirty years.
This year, our students are from Belgium, Violette and Gauthier,
and from the United States, Tiffany from the Hopi Nation in Arizona. Working behind the scenes is another Belgian, Michael. I will offer my apologies at this point to the young men. We didn't have much trouble with Tiffany and Violette, but I'm not sure we ever pronounced Gauthier and Michael's names properly.
The Up With People show reflects the International scope of the organization.
Many of the students wear traditional dress of their native cultures, such as our own Tiffany of the Hopi Nation. The show includes the song Vrolijke Viernden (Belgium), Carrickfergus (Northern Ireland), Oye el Boom (Spain).
The American culture is very well represented, with a medley of folk songs such as Shenandoah.
A representative of First National Bank, Up With People's sponsor in North Platte for more than 30 years and the director of the North Platte Area Childrens Museum are called to the stage for recognition.
These kids give it their all. They spend all day in community impact programs, visiting schools, painting walls, then set up the stage, rehearse and perform.
The Love Medley, includes popular songs from America.
Other songs from around the world include traditional African songs It Takes A Whole Village To Raise A Child, Gumboot Dance, Shosholoza.
A special part of the program is when the cast brings their host siblings to the stage for a song. The little girl in pink in the front row stole the show with her performance.
Songs from Asia include Hanamizuki (a Japanese ballad written after 9/11) and Jai Ho (an Academy Award winning song from India).
Two of our host children Gauthier and Violette dancing up a storm.
From the program: The goal of 'A Song for the World' is to bring the world to the local city, give thanks to our local supporters and shine the light on members of the community who work towards a better future, while encouraging every member of the community to sing their song to give their gift to the world.
From the lyrics of "One Person" (What Can I Do?): Oh, oh - what can I do? I'm just one person, Woh, oh - what can I do? I'm just one person, same as you. We've seen walls tumble down, seen chains fall as freedom sings, because one person stood and answered the question. What can I do... what can I do?
North Platte is well represented in the cast, with Breton Shepherd playing the drums and two other cast members singing.
A fan club even developed around our friend Gauthier.
The cast performs another show tonight, then we get to spend a family day on Sunday. They leave bright and early Monday morning for a performance in Minneapolis, then on to the Chicago area before they fly out to the Philippines.
Thanks for stopping by. The coffee is always on.