Category Archives: Music and Art

Finding Music and Giving Voice

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Rodrigo Solórzano, international writer and music composer, joined the Traveling Teacher for a 5-day Tell Your Own Story Project at Burmese Refugee Primary School 42 near Mae Sot, Thailand. He led 8 students in a unique musical and digital photography project. He shares his experience with us…

It appears as a natural pact, an unbreakable edict: the bigger the pain, the bigger the appreciation for the simplest experience. Continue reading

Proud to be Burmese

While discussing the upcoming ‘Tell Your Own Story‘ workshop with Burmese refugee students at Best Friends School (also known as School 42 Kilometers) near Mae Sot, Thailand, it was suggested that the boys team create a video about Burmese games. We decided to take them through the brainstorming process anyway. And it was these young boys who came up with the idea to make the video “Proud to Be Burmese”. It was a simple, yet beautiful topic. And they moved through the brainstorming and video capturing almost effortlessly. They KNEW their Burmese Pride very well. Watch their video…

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Angklung, Baby! Sharing an Instrument in Malaysia, Thailand and the United States!

Recently, I wrote about the power of music to bring students together around the globe. I had just visited with Marching Band Students at the St. Xavier Institution in Penang, Malaysia. During my visit, the students treated me to a performance of the traditional Malaysian Angklung. It seems to have started an Angklung Playing Craze during the past few months…

It inspired Sparta Alpine School Band teacher Patricia Curtis to introduce her students to the Angklung.

Today, during my visit to the beautiful Settabutr Upathum Primary School in Bangkok, Thailand, I noticed an Angklung set in the music and dance room. Continue reading

Lady Gaga and the Universal Language of Music in Malaysia

Recently, Homa Tavangar of ‘Growing up Global’ asked me via Twitter my thought on how parents can raise “happy, informed global citizens”. I’ve had a myriad of answers to this question during the years, but Homa’s recent question has caused me to think about my experiences as I’ve traveled and interacted with global cultures. During my most recent school visit in Penang, Malaysia, an entirely new, and very exciting answer came to me…
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Art in Cambodia — The Search for The Sounding Room

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James Russell Fritsch, Label Manager for Public Guilt and Deadverse Recordings, went in search of The Sounding Room in Phnom Penh, Cambodia. He shares his love of music and art with us…

When trying to find a hotel in Phnom Penh, Cambodia, I found the Diamond Palace. The price was affordable and it was a 20 minute walk away from the center of town which had many of the cities famed sites (Royal Palace, National Museum, Wat Ounalum, and the beautiful riverside.) One of the customer reviews stood out in my mind,”Nice room, breakfast is okay. The problem is the location. You have to pass by a really terrible slum area which clouds your vision. Hard to believe people can live in such squalor. I would not stay here again because of that.” Upon arrival, I passed the building on a few occasions and took note. While it was old and crumbling, it also reminded me of parts of my hometown, Baltimore. Continue reading