Sunday, September 20, 2015

Summer - Yale International Choral Festival

And so..... after many practices and screams by our coach (TT).... the day is finally here!


The NUSChoir
43 singing souls who were leaving Singapore to Yale, USA for Yale International Choral Festival!

On the Emirates plane! Everyone was so excited before the 22 hours flight haha! Thanks to this X-Pro selfie tool, we get to take tons of selfies including everyone during this trip!

Took this photo before flight. Err thanks to the burgers and fries in USA, i can no longer see myself like this now LOL

After 22hours flight + 2hours transit time in Dubai Airport, the plane finally touched down at JFK Airport! Well anyway I enjoyed a lot on plane watching tons of movies like Cinderella, 失恋急让, 点对点, 红颜露水....

Once we exited the airport, the strong wind blew on my face and I was shocked! It's summer and the weather here is just like spring! Luggage was filled with all summer clothing but the weather here was soooo chilling! Well, let's see how am I going to survive here for 2 weeks.

Took 1+ hour travel distance to the Yale University and arrived the Branford College.
This college, was the place we practised, we debrief, we had fun,we....well, we actually spent much time on singing alone haha.

Look at this.


And this.
And I know this is what we said, Love at first sight awwwww. I wished my hostel can be that nice and unique! Until someone told me this actually looked a bit like a haunted place LOL

And this was the lovely room I had been staying for a week! Nice right??? YES IT IS hahahahaha. It was actually a suite including 6 rooms and 1 bathroom. Oh talking about bathroom, I wonder why all toilets in USA have noticable gaps at the doors.= =

Despite the tall bed frame which made me have to climb onto the bed, I confirmed this was my true love after seeing this. It was extremely cosy and comfortable =)

And they are my group members =) Group 1, Linus, Joel, Michelle, Sarah, Sara and me. All five of them are joining the summer program in Boston University till August and I hope they are still safe and happy in USA. =)
Can't believe that I actually spent my first week in USA with 5 of them! This combination was so weird to me at first, but the chemical within us worked quite well I guess that I actually bonded new friendships here,but not in Singapore. LOL 

Look at this place! It's our dining hall OMG. Ain't this look like one of the scenes in Harry Potter???! Ok la I don't really watch Harry Potter lah but I just simply like this place!

After dinner, we went to watch the first concert by Yale Choral Artists. They were so good but the jet lag effect worked on many of us that we actually failed to control ourselves from sleeping! @@ By the way, the weather in Yale is so chilling that air-cond is not needed here. Hmm but it's summer, I wonder what they do in the winter.

Decided to make myself wake up earlier and jog a bit before the day officially started. Only began to sweat after running 3 miles here! With blushing cheeks and picturesque scenery, I took this selfie in Bradford College=)

I wished I could see this view every morning! Sobs....
And I thick-skin-ly named them my little beautiful courtyard haha

And we spent the rest of the day singing, eating our meals and going concert. So called Artist Life uh haha!

The 13 Altos. When practice was too hardcore for us, selfie is stress-relief activity haha.

These are actually the libraries in Yale! Cool right! I spent some time visiting them when I was free but too bad I didn't get the chance to visit the nicest one! =(
This is the Bass Library that we would always passed by when we had to go for dinners and concerts.

The very amazing Sprague Hall, where the concerts of all five choirs were held =) I think all singers  felt happy to have the opportunity to sing in this hall.

To give you more idea, the YICF program is just one of the programs held by the Yale University for this grand event. More performances and activities which are relevant to this event like dance,drama,... are also ongoing at the same time! And Yale University is actually very well known for singing in the USA! Woots!

I must say the EntreVoces Choir from Cuba is really good! OMG I love the songs and styles they performed! Each of them are so talented and can sing so well. Despite the language barrier, they never fail to deliver the joy and fun, music is really a language among the singers!=)) Do check them out on the YouTube!

Morning guys! We finally had some free time so we decided to tour a bit around the school!=DD
We walked along the Broadway, which is the shopping street in Yale campus. There are many branded shops like Apple, GAP, The Face Shop and famous restaurants along that street as well. But they weren't our target. We went for the YALE COOP haha!

The college logos on the wall next to COOP.

I like how big and neat their coop is. Their customised products are all so nice that I would buy all of them if I had the money! 

Nice hor!! but so expensive *sobs*

And after that I split up with the group and hung around on my own =D
The very cute school bus! Guys this isn't Yale's in campus bus la ok, I think it's for primary/secondary school one~

The School of Music! It's actually quite small but it has been training so many talented people in Yale! 
Talking about the Americans/Westerns taking photos for Asians, they will always say "Oh you look amazing/you look gorgeous!" NO MATTER how ugly you are in the photo LOLLLL. Maybe this is what we call Western Courtesy ahaha

Look at his shoes! I don't know his name HAHA but so many people touched his leg for good grades (regretting for not touching his shoes also grades this sem.....)

Well.....did I just said we had some free time to tour around???  Oh man, why so serious?!  I just kidding la.... obviously,arts people sings and attend vocal classes all day err day.LOL -_____-
Attended conducting class (which i don't understand at all LOL)  and then headed to the Whitney Humanities Centre to do combines with the YAC. The respectful feeling really arose from the bottom of my heart the moment I see the silver hairs still singing, it's their passion to music that made me feel touched. After so many tiny little things happening, me myself really feel the persistence towards something isn't easy to maintain :/

A for Altos :)

Then dinner! and then watched a concert and then practice and sleep! Artist life is like that one *erhemmm*

we practiced all day err day

But before that we get to visit the morning market in the campus! So many fresh products selling at very cheap price! YAY

And I bought this at 3USD I think? OMG la so cheap and nice! 

Ok we got 1 hour break before hell practice and rehearsals started! I begged my group leader to let us visit the Bass Library. And yay I finally visited library here!:)

Library here is really beautifulllll, loving the red bricks and wooden furnitures here~ And their library even lending out movie CDs for students! Cool right!

I don't know what do you think but I think the shelves here are much taller LOL

 Secretly tell you I was reading the book in an upside-down way hohoho. Don't judge me k life is too hard to study during summer hahaha.

 Rehearsal time! Finally have the chance to sing this beautiful white stage! Can you imagine the stage is really all white??? They really take good care of this very much and they told us many rules before we actually started the rehearsal.

 To me, the feeling to sing on this stage was much more overwhelming than singing at the Esplanade! I seriously love and miss this stage!!! It's so comfortable to sing here (although we are singing no-so-fun Asian pieces hahaha) The most 要死 part is that I say the last note of an Asian piece wrongly and I feel Nelson was going to kill me LOL. Ok la I sang very loud for that song cause he always scolded Altos that we weren't confident for our own part and sang so soft even we had 13 people LOL. My effort almost killed myself LOLOLOL.

After rehearsal is self practice and dress up make up prepare hahaha
Nice warm up area!

Actually among the 5 choirs of this festival, we are the one which had the longest concert(90mins) and the only choir who changed clothes in the middle haha!(cause it's weird very gowns and suits singing Asian songs lah haha)! But actually after Cuba's choir we(even Nelson) could feel the pressure la hahaha, so we must go out all for this concert!
 But we were so happy that they actually loved our Asian pieces (which we hate them so much ahaha)
And I don't understand why their back stage got SO MANY stairs omg! Wearing heels rushing for the next program ain't fun at all lol I can feel like the feet didn't belong to me anymore.

First half: Singing VV15' Stars pieces
Actually singing them again with only half of the NUS Choir members here was quite hard, to me at least. Cause it's a challenge for 40 people to create a grand and fulfilling atmosphere I think!

Second Half: Asian pieces
Still loving Somnia!!! and also Home! OMG tears always run in my eyes when I sing them!

So we are done with the first performance in USA! WOOHOO!!!
Yale ah, really everywhere is a good spot for photos!

This one nice lah *LOVE*

Morning! Breakfast session and took a group photo with Jerusalem Choir! ;)

yeah no more performance in Yale so no need practice today! *petals petals*
Oh nono, still got the last grand performance with all choirs!

1st stop: Sterling Memorial Library
Their libraries are really worth visiting! And some of the libraries all connected! This is so cool! And they protected the books and resources so much that everyone need to go through a security check of your bag before entering!
The saddest thing I that I didn't get to visit the most beautiful library here cause it's closed on weekends! *SOB* No choice loh, had been doing an artist during the weekdays LOL

I really really love these interior designs and wood elements. Don't you think they are perfect match with books??? hahaha

2nd stop: School of Art
It's modern compared to the old school buildings (yet I love them), which is something like NUS BIZ building, mainly made of by glasses. Maybe this was why I feel nothing special lah haha!

And inside the school there were balloons everywhere!!! HAHA thick-skinnedly asked a 7 year old kid(super handsome) to help me take this hahaha!

3rd stop: Yale Art Musuem
Some days in a week there will be free admission! YAY

I don't know why but I love these math arts the most! #sonotme

lazy edit ah sorry hahaa

3rd stop: Common hall
It's really nice! OCD people must be loving all these asymmetric styles here!
I could even see Korean couple taking wedding photos here! Mmm wondering if they purposely came here for this!

4th stop: Yale Repertory Theatre
This is exactly something we can see in US dramas eh! haha

5th stop: School of Drama

6th stop: College Street Music Hall
OMG isn't this cool to have a Music Hall in campus!!! Super artistic pleaseeeeee!

Last night in Yale!

 And we were going to sing here~~~ This is a classic and coolllll! OMG if we were watching an orchestra here, that would be super awesome!
And it rained today! :/

So 5 of the choirs gathered here and sang together! We need really practiced all together but 5 choirs finally united in music!:) 
And surprisingly everyone loved our green gown LOL

And then party night after concert!!!
Walao the party is so atas with so many high class food buffet and the singing party still go on! You could never imagine how this party goes! It's everyone eating an communicating with each other, and then the choir PK started again haha! It's like a choir will suddenly start singing then ater a while another choir will start singing again! hahaha it's just like Pitch Perfect scene leh! It's such a different and playful party!

NUS Choir :)
We had so many meetings and practices for this. Happy with the musics, get scolded,....
Hmm Thanks for the wonderful opportunity here!:') Singing in choirs for 10 years and I finally widened my very tiny music world. You guys are amazing but I get to see some other styles that I should learn from the rest! I was really inspired and it's really a great takeaway to me! Music, language with no barriers ;)

NUS Choir 14/15 Batch :)

NUS Choir Alto :)

BYE YALE, gonna miss this musical place!


Maira Gall