Two dozen students from Rockland will travel to NYC on Friday as the only musical presentation during the 35th Annual Lions Clubs International Day with the United Nations.
The Nanuet Barr Middle School concert choir will be conducted by Elaine Royal and Dianna Bullard. Jack Gremli, the director of music for the Nanuet school district, will be conducting one of the songs. The choir is a mix of 5th to 8th graders.
“I feel very honored and excited to be performing for people from all over the world,” said Allison Hansen, 8th grade. She added that they’ve been rehearsing for weeks and among the four songs, one is accompanied with sign language and another is an African song. “One song is in an African language and we’re very nervous about that one because African representatives will be there.”
The LCI is celebrating a 68-year with the UN. This event is an opportunity to reflect on the common goals of the two organizations, the many accomplishments of working together, and a shared commitment to meeting the humanitarian needs of the global community, according to the LCI.
“One song that we’re singing is made especially for the event. It’s called, ‘Think about a World of Peace’ by Gary Fry who lives in Chicago and (the song) has been arranged by one of our own music teachers, Mr. Michael Minard,“ said Brendan Flanigan, an 8th grader who has been in concert choir for four years. “This is one of my favorite afterschool activities because I like to sing and it’s a great way for me to express myself.”
Gary Fry, an Emmy-winning composer, is friends with Gremli and recommended the school district to the LCI. Each year, the LCI hosts a peace poster contest. During the students’ performance, a slideshow of the posters will play.
Although their performance is only 20 minutes, this is a great opportunity for them to meet influential people from around the world, said Gremli. UN representatives will be present as well as Lions members from different countries. Among those who are tentatively scheduled to speak are:
- Wayne A. Madden—Lions Clubs International President
- Carl Augusto—President and CEO for the American Foundation for the Blind
- Nicholas Alipui—Director of UNICEF programs