The road show was ambitious and had serious logistical challenges of accommodation and providing meals for the children. Traveling long and arduous journeys could take a toll on performance standards but we persevered. The Music Project's first "Unite Road Show", 200 students, parents and teachers set off for Katunayake. The first performance was by 40 children of the Music Project's orchestra at the Bandaranaike International Airport. This was an amazing experience for the students and to be able to perform at your country's main international airport was a huge achievement for us. Niroshan Ranawake of SriLankan Cares worked closely with the Aviation Dept. to obtain the necessary approvals. For most of the children and teachers this was their first visit to the airport; it was an exciting experience. At the arrival lobby of the airport the children performed the following pieces: The Adventures of Tin Tin, Themes from The Water Music, Last Minute Latin, Ganga Adara, Pirates of the Caribbean, Nil Ahas Thale, Saree Ke Fall Sa, Radetzky March, French Can Can, Tequila. It was heartwarming to hear responses from international visitors who commended the children for their ability and the mission of the project.
The rest of children and parents were taken on an educational tour to visit an internationally acclaimed garment factory - Courtaulds Clothing Lanka. Here the students learnt the history of the company, the manufacturing process of garments and the advanced technological solutions utilised at these factories. This was a very valuable educational tour.
The 2nd day of the Roadshow, Friday 26 Aug – The Music Project Orchestra performed at the Kandy City Centre Kandy from 4 - 8 pm. We performed at the arcade ground floor to celebrate the opening of the new food court. After hearing the orchestra's performance, the KCC chairman Thusitha Wijayasena invited us to perform at the opening ceremony of the food court. It was a good experience for the children and it was well received by the crowds that gathered at the arcade. After a long day, we set off to Colombo where arrangements were made to stay at the British School of Colombo.
The 3rd day of the Roadshow – the kids were excited as performing in Colombo was the highlight of the roadshow. The first session was at Good Market – appreciation from the audience, chats with the children by some of the donors and sponsors added much value to the overall performance. The challenges of performing in the heat when violins don't stay in tune, where sheet music flutters and where angst causes brass to not sound as expected, are all challenges the children learn from. The next performance was held at Independence Square – the students were buzzing with excitement – and then The Music Project Orchestra begins to play - the crowds started to gather round – amazed at the ability of these kids. It was an amazing performance, played with a beautiful background setting, with perfect lighting. The UNITE – Roadshow 2016, the resoundingly successful orchestra once again captures the audiences and leaves behind some inspirational moments.