Pupils bring down the house on day One of music festival
By George Orido
Themes on education, health and the transition to adulthood dominated the opening day of the 85th edition of the Kenya Schools and Colleges Music Festival in Nakuru.
In a rendition full of colour and glamour, pupils from nursery and primary schools pitted their melodious vocals against the best as they made beautiful music that kept audiences on the edge.
Mirembe Primary School from Western took an early lead in their class with a graceful but tense dance on male circumcision.
Dressed in improvised but functional gunny bags, the boys wowed with their sheer energy and concentration as initiates in ingolote masks swayed menacingly towards the knife.
Musabale, Nawaholo and Koduol schools from Nyanza followed in that order.
Natiri FYM Primary School impressed with their Kamaveka dance, especially the infusion of a five-piece orchestra that blended well with the rest of the team. Led by soloist Charles Kakai, Ostine Wekesa on the drum, Musa Ngome on luengele, Godwin Mulongo on the litungu, Chefa Cheloti on kengele and Bramwell Mtenyo on siriri, their performance under the tutorship of Elizabeth Munyote was amazing.
Love in the air
Love was in the air when Mogoso Primary School from Nairobi hit the stage with a Turkana folk song, Ekriam, depicting a man and woman falling in love.
Dressed in brown costumes that made them look taller, they sang of this blissful pair who get engaged and blossom into an admirable couple ready to start an ideal family.
Their colleagues from Tala Boys emphasised the need to educate children as a sure way of guaranteeing a bright future.
The troupe presented a dance, Otondi, where a village beauty is the talk of everybody.
Her only problem is that she is overwhelmed by her natural endowment and is on the verge of abusing it by looking for shortcuts to get rich thus becoming promiscuous in the end.
Earlier in the day, kindergarteners entertained guests during the opening ceremony with calculated and thoughtful dance steps.
In their Class One performance, Gilgil Hills Academy from Rift Valley came tops closely followed by Sony Sugar and Blessed Kiranda, both from Nyanza.
Springboard Academy from Western took the golden trophy in yet another class for girls’ set piece, The Lass with the Delicate Air.
Runner-up positions went to Mogoon Primary from Rift Valley and Burumba Primary from Western.
“This festival began in 1927 and not even the Second World War could dampen its spirits,” said Prof Caleb Okumu, who noted that participation had grown from 300 to about 100,000 students drawn from schools and colleges around the country.
This year, pupils will have something extra to smile about after Colgate-Palmolive offered free dental check-ups and a gift hamper of toothpaste and toothbrushes.
Lions International will also conduct free eye check-ups.
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