By David Ahn
I believe many people already heard the good news about the FTA between South Korea and China. To explain briefly, FTA stands for the Free Trade Agreement, and thanks to this agreement, hopefully there will be more frequent and active trade between the two nations. Personally, I was very glad when I heard the news, because our school orchestra and other teams had been hoping to perform in a concert to celebrate this ratification.
As a person who saw a lot of members practicing hard for the concert, it occurred to me that the ratification must also be a result of strong aspiration and great preparation. Zhongshi Orchestra did spend a great deal of time practicing for the concert. I think we shouldn’t forget to mention the effort of orchestra members. Although many members were busy for different reasons, we all willingly sacrificed our time for practice. Each part of the orchestra practiced individually and together for a few weeks before the concert, and kept in step to make sure students could master their part. For two days, Mr. Kang and the all the members stayed at school in the evening to practice for longer than 3 hours. Honestly, there were some songs that were really hard. For example, ‘Arirang Rhapsody’ was very difficult especially for Violin players, and at first, some thought it was almost impossible to play that music. However, I was really impressed that all the players spent extra time to practice the song and surprisingly, we could actually play the music very well by the time we had our final practice. For the concert, I can confidently say that the performance was amazing, for we could play with passion.
Although we successfully finished the concert, there were also difficulties, because I needed to prepare for an important exam. I had to make myself fully focus on the test, but I also couldn’t forget about the orchestra practice because I was concertmaster. Therefore, I had to manage my time wisely so that I would not neglect school work and orchestra practice. Although some students might worry that the orchestra activities hinder them from concentrating on other things, I think the orchestra is not a nuisance, but actually an energizer for an otherwise monotonous life. Based on my experience, I know that we can both participate in the orchestra and do what we need to do. Thankfully, I could get good results in the test, and also prepare well for the concert. I think good performance in the concert was more significant, because I practiced and spent time for the concert even though I was busy doing other things.
Although there were some challenges as we prepared for the concert, I am convinced that the concert was meaningful not only for the local government and organizing body, but also for all the members who prepared for and participated in the performance. Lastly, I would like to express gratitude to Mr. and Mrs. Kang who always put our orchestra as a priority, as there wouldn’t be this orchestra without their effort. I am proud that Zhongshi Orchestra is now serving for the good of the society, and I am looking forward to seeing our orchestra grow as a mature team with greater responsibility.