29th annual performance
Third-graders from the Beacon City School District performed in the 29th annual Calico Ball on June 6 at the high school’s Seeger Theater. The event is a multi-cultural celebration of dance and music where each class performs in costume from a different country. It was launched by Pete Seeger in 1989 and is sponsored by the Beacon Arts and Education Foundation.
The performance opened with a South African folk song by the Beacon High School Chorus under the direction of music teacher Susan Wright, followed by 12 dance routines. Classes from South Avenue Elementary performed the Bembalay from Jamaica, the Mexican Hat Dance, the Hadrami from Yemen and the Plena from Puerto Rico.
Sargent Elementary classes performed the Farandole from France, and the Sweets of May (an Irish Ceilidh and step dance). Glenham classes performed the Dhandiya Ras (the Gujarati Stick Dance) from India, the Gumboot Dance from South Africa, and the Russian Troika. JV Forrestal classes performed the Maculele from Brazil, the Lion Hunting and Celebration Dance from Kenya, and the Chinese Festival Ribbon Dance.
Folk singer/songwriter Tom Chapin closed the performance with a sing-along of two of his songs, “This Pretty Planet” and “Walk the World Now, Children,” accompanied by all of the students.
The district also recognized JV Forrestal third-grade teacher Carol Salvas, who has attended 28 of the 29 Balls.Did you find this article useful or informative? Please consider a contribution to support our nonprofit journalism. Our annual appeal has begun! All gifts of up to $1,000 through Dec. 31 will be matched TWICE! Click here for details. We are able to provide this website and our weekly print paper free to the community -- and pay our writers, photographers and editors for their hard work -- because of the generosity of readers like you.