Thursday, February 17, 2011

Pizmon Etzion

The favorite TV show of my dearest mother (ad 120) is Dancing with the Stars. There are these three judges, and they watch these movie/TV/music/sports stars tripping the light fantastic with professionals and doing usually a very terrific job of it. These judges meanwhile have to come up with clever and pithy comments after ever dance, while simultaneously rating each performer and keeping the crowd happy.

Well, that's sort of how I felt tonight as a judge of Pizmon Etzion, the class choir competition of the Orot Etzion Boys School in Efrat.
The boys in all classes from 3rd to 8th grade competed. They were judged on the song itself, their delivery of it, their choreography and performance level. Scores were based on 100%.
Twenty classes competed and I gave out one 100 during the evening. That 100 went to the 5th Grade class of Hei 2. They sang Revach from Miami Boys Choir. They were just fabulous performers. They were enthusiastic, together, and they even tried to get the audience to participate. (I hope I'll be able to find time to post their performance. I think I videoed part of it.)
The entire project was terrific. The boys rehearsed for three weeks in their classrooms. They learned their songs, and some clever dance steps. But more than that, they learned that the more they put into something, the more they'll get out.
Most students (whether in religious or secular schools) learn that the amount of effort they expend studying for a test or doing a homework assignment is parallel to the grade they're going to get. That's an individual achievement.
But when you perform, it's not about you being your best, it's about you being your best for your fellow performer. It's about the whole picture. It's a fabulous lesson in team work and in connecting to and encouraging others to do their best.
You could see many of these classes really "got it." They were in synch with each other. They were proud of each other. That's a tremendous lesson.
The other judges (Reuvein Quint, Yonatan Fund, Bentzi T. and Rivka Moriah) and I were very clear on the groups we thought did their best to: work together, unify for the good of others, AND sound great. There were three winners in each division of the school. But the truth is that all the boys won. They had a fabulously fun evening, they cheered on their friends and they were cheered too. The energy in the Efrat Matnas was turned all the way up, and the fun quotient was tremendous.
The MC, Rav Noam, was especially good. He kept the audience excited and happy the whole night.
Not an easy task, but a terrific night.

1 comment:

  1. Thank you for your upbeat evaluation of the evening. I would also like to add that every year the pizmon etzion improves. For instance, this year was the first time that the school was divided into 3 divisions rather than just 2 as it has been for the past 7 or 8 years, or however long the competition has been going on for. It was a valiant effort to reduce the crowding in the Olam, which is a HUGE problem, and it also allowed for more winners, and a more fair competition. As Sharon said above, "we were all winners;" whether the performers or the audience, a fun night was has by all!