The last four days the PULSE group has visited the Northern Cape region. Saturday we attended the Field Band Foundations Northern Cape Regional Championships in Kimberley. Despite the biting cold weather, and the desert dust the FBF kids were excited and prepared to do their very best in order to qualify for the National Championships in Johannesburg in August. The kids were wearing costumes and carrying flags in all different colours, brightening up the stadium and giving the place a good vibe. All 5 bands were grooving with such enthusiasm that us in the PULSE group and the audience were tapping our feet and shaking our bodies so that the biting cold ran away quickly. We Norwegians even got the pleasure of hearing several Norwegian tunes among the performances. Especially Vamp’s “Maanemannen” seemed to be a favourite hit this year. Also John Legend’s romantic song “All of Me” was a knockout among the audience. PULSE managed to perform and introduce the project to the crowd and got several Tutors interested in joining the project.
Sunday was a day to relax for the PULSE group and we celebrated Anne’s birthday with chilling, listening to South African house music and eating Bruce’s homemade traditional Pooitjie at his house in Kimberley. While the Pooitjie was cooking we had the pleasure to witness parts of a Zionist Church service that was going on in the back-yard of the neighbours’ house. The service was filled with song and dance to praise the lord.
When the evening came we all gathered around the fire and sang traditional South African songs under the star-filled sky, just like in a scary movie about good friends camping before it all goes wrong……..
Luckily nothing went wrong, except if you were among the ones rooting for Argentina in the World-Cup soccer final.
Monday our PULSE journey continued to Danielskuil, a dusty, but charming little place in the middle of nowhere in the middle of Northern Cape. Here the PULSE group had the pleasure of meeting the Danielskuil tutor staff and Girlfriend, a lively FBF dance tutor from Kuruman. We had a fun and educating two-day workshop with them about music and health in the Field Band Foundation. We were living and eating with friendly local families that took us in for the night. The main topics for this workshop were how to communicate with the local community and how the FBF activity could be linked to the members’ well-being. We shared stories and learned a lot about the staffs work in Danielskuil. Tuesday morning started with a nice cup of coffee in the sun with the local families and a short walk around the neighbourhood. After this nice start to the day we had the pleasure to be thought different instruments and dance moves from the tutors during a practical workshop session.
After eating lunch the long journey back to the free-state and Johannesburg began. 8 hours on dusty roads and only 5 bags of chips later we arrived safely, but exhausted back home.
These four days have been busy, memorable and eventful and we have had the pleasure to get to know even more members of the FBF-family. Next weekend it’s the Gauteng regional championships and we are looking forward to see what the bands from this region can come up with. Look out for more PULSE updates in the nearest future.