Kendall presents multicultural presentation on Christmas Around The World

By Kristina Gabalski, Correspondent Posted 25 December 2015 at 12:00 am

Photos by Kristina Gabalski

KENDALL – Mrs. Petrosino, wife of Kendall Junior-Senior High School Social Studies teacher Joseph Petrosino, describes Christmas in her native Croatia to Kendall students during an assembly Wednesday afternoon in the Jr./Sr. High School auditorium.

With a population that is heavily Roman Catholic, Christmas is an important religious feast day in Croatia, she said.

“We have snow every seven to ten years,” she noted, “which is very nice, actually.”

Croatians also celebrate the Feast of St. Nicholas on Dec. 5 and plant Christmas wheat on the Feast of St. Lucy on Dec. 13. The length of the newly sprouted wheat on Christmas day indicates how much success can be expected in the new year.

Members of the Kendall Senior High Jazz Band perform holiday favorites Wednesday afternoon during a multicultural assembly in the auditorium.

Students heard from members of their own school community about life in other countries of the world – including Christmas celebrations; listened to fellow students perform holiday music; and had the opportunity to participate in the making of calypso music on steel drums with members of the Panloco Steel Drum Band.

Mrs. Mirjam Bauer, a high school counselor who is from the Netherlands, told students about life in her native country as well as their Christmas tradition of Sinterklaas, who visits with gifts on Dec. 5-6 along with his helper Zwarte Piet.

Fellow student Nathalia Quiles Rivera, who came to Kendall from Puerto Rico, told about colorful Christmas lights in her homeland and the “huge” parties that are held outside at this time of year with singing and dancing.

“Here you can’t go outside,” she said. “You literally freeze.”

Nathalia also told how Christmas and Three King’s Day (Epiphany) are important religious feast days in Puerto Rico.

Kendall students join Ted Canning and sons Jon and James of Panloco Steel Drum Band to make music with drums and other West African percussion instruments.

The Kendal Sr. High Jazz Band performed a medley of Christmas songs, and the Panloco Steel Drum Band gave students a taste of West Africa with drumming, as well as Trinidad with calypso steel drum music.

Students were able to play with the band following brief instructions from director Ted Canning, who related the history of the development of the steel drum to students.

Kendall Jr./Sr. High School Students and members of Panloco Steel Drum Band combine to form a “Garbage Band” – Panloco director Ted Canning used the “garbage band” to explain the historical development of the steel drum.

Kendall students were also able to join Panloco playing on steel drums. Director Ted Canning was able to include the students on musical numbers after a brief instruction.