Point of View

Piano Slam: The Music Speaks
May 11, 2009, 9:35 pm
Filed under: Miami-Dade County Public Schools | Tags:

Student poets from Miami-Dade County Public Schools took center stage for a free performance at The Dranoff International Two Piano Foundation’s Piano Slam on Tuesday night. The kids competed for the chance to perform their poetry as a part of this unique collaboration among the classical music piano duo Van Veen, local DJ The Brass King and local spoken word artists Deborah Magdalena and Mecca aka Grimo.

Students performers at Piano Slam. Photo by Ben Thacker

Students performers at Piano Slam. Photo by Ben Thacker

Our community’s kids shined bright on the Knight Concert Hall stage as they performed in their own words to a large Adrienne Arsht Center audience that included their peers, teachers, parents and friends. Student poet Daniel Joseph took the prize for Best in Show for his poem “Music,” as his family and friends from Horace Mann Middle School whooped and hollered from the audience chamber.

Jocelyn Lira’s (Brownsville Middle School) poem “Memories from my County” ended dramatically with the final stanza repeated in Spanish, Creole and English: “Songs, dances remind me of my country. I will never forget my country.” The entire ensemble performed the show’s climactic number, “Music Keeps Me Satisfied” by Nesley Ostral (Horace Mann Middle School), while the pianos and The Brass King’s beats kept the audience moving, rocking and riveted on every word.  Carlene Sawyer, the Dranoff Foundation’s executive director, enthusiastically thanked the Adrienne Arsht Center for giving these kids the opportunity of a lifetime to perform on the stage of Miami’s own world-class performing arts center.

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