Message of friendship and peace orchestrated for annual Daniel Pearl World Music Day

Musical event will have an evening performance on Oct. 26

Maia Hito

Mirabelle Chernick and Alyssa Cancio

Music teacher Wes Hambright directs vocalists sophomore Andi Mendoza and juniors Taylor Devlugt and Jared Medrano who are performing for Daniel Pearl World Music Day.

As the bell rings and school comes to an end, students rush to gather musical equipment for that day’s rehearsal, another part of the hustle and bustle in preparing for the 8th annual Daniel Pearl World Music Day.

“Last year, we needed more rehearsals,” music teacher Wes Hambright said. “This year, we have more rehearsals for longer periods of time. The entire rehearsal process is after school so missed classes don’t affect grades.”

Daniel Pearl World Music Day (DPWMD), an international musical event occurring in over 140 countries, honors journalist Daniel Pearl’s heroism and celebrates ideals of peace and tolerance. It annually takes place in the month of journalist Daniel Pearl’s birthday, October. This year, it’s seeing new changes to make sure all the songs are fresh and every performer is at the same level. While the theme of world peace has always been the central focus each year, this year’s DPWMD is specifically recognizing the value of friendship through the chosen songs.

“Friendship is a big word,” junior Taylor Devlugt said. “It’s a very good theme because it unites all of us. That’s how we continue to grow.”

Devlugt, one among many first-time performers, will sing “I’ll Be There” by Michael Jackson and “Are You Gonna Go My Way” by Lenny Kravitz. She believes experiences like this are a great opportunity to learn from since she wants to become a singer. Other than school, Devlugt practices at home to make any adjustments to her tempo and because of this, has no nervousness for the upcoming event.

Retired choir teacher Marsha Taylor volunteered to assist in vocal performance, just as she did in years past. With the choir now participating in eight to nine songs, as opposed to last year’s five songs, a greater emphasis is placed on the collective voice rather than individual voices. The choir’s main goal is to improve on creating more harmony.

Along with an international greeting, a total of 14 songs will be played, 10 of which the band will perform in. In between every three songs, junior Amanda Jimenez will present poems from singer Princess Nokia and actor Charlie Chaplin. Senior and Student Body President Dean Khazanov will be the master of ceremonies.

Junior Ceejay Posis will perform a Tagalog song while playing the guitar and sophomore Olivia Bullock will perform two Klezmer pieces on the violin, a popular style of music to the Jewish culture.

“Really any kind of music can be appreciated by people around the world,” Bullock said. “Music can bring people together in this way and I think that’s really beautiful.”

  Dress rehearsals will occur on Oct. 25, with three shows during the day for all students. The actual event will take place on Oct. 26 with a performance in the evening at 7 p.m., which Dr. Judea and Ruth Pearl will attend.

“I want the audience to be happy and think about some of the messages that were emphasized,” Hambright said. “They should leave the hall feeling better about society than they felt coming in. More optimistic and positive.”