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Feb. 8, 2009

Magnet schools audience in cultural display

by Katie Sint, Online Managing Editor
With flashing lights, spectacular fashions and exhilarating performances paired with great enthusiasm, Blair's annual Magnet Arts Night (MAN) reverberated with all the makings of a great time. In front of a packed auditorium filled on Friday, members of the Blair Magnet program rocked the house with melodious musical performances inspired from backgrounds in India, China, Korea and the U.S. Already known for their mathematical and scientific prowess, Magnet students proved that they had even more to offer on the stage.
Lawrence Cho, Christopher Hsing, Daniel Hwang and Nathan Kung came together to play "Bolero" on a single cello. Alex Joseph
Lawrence Cho, Christopher Hsing, Daniel Hwang and Nathan Kung came together to play "Bolero" on a single cello.


Led by upperclassmen, MAN was a result of hours of hard work and practice, including a five-hour rehearsal on Thursday. As the performers took the stage, every second of work poured into MAN showed, through synchronized dances, a wonderful "mash-up" of pop songs, stellar band performances and a humorous tribute to a certain YouTube hit.

Opening to a large crowd, juniors Kyujoo Choi, Elizabeth Lee and Michael Lee set the tone of the night. Keeping a powerful beat on their Korean drums, the three mesmerized the audience while masterfully twirling their drumsticks. As Masters of Ceremonies juniors Scott Yu and Nader Behdin and seniors Jason Arora and Elaine Chung cracked a few corny jokes, the audience broke out into laughter, waiting excitedly for the next performers.

A dance group comprised of juniors Janice Lan, Lucy Liu, Danielle Sok, Elaine Lin and Xinhong Qiu electrified a surprised crowd with a hip-hop routine set to "Replay," by SHINee. Issues with the speakers on the right side of the stage were barely noticeable compared to the eye-catching dance moves. The night took a graceful turn when juniors Pin-Joe Ko and Christopher Hsing (who recently picked up a $2000 scholarship from the Washington Post Music and Dance Scholarship Award) performed "Yearning" from the film "Crouching Tiger, Hidden Dragon" and senior Sally Huang calmed the crowd with an elegant performance of "Fragrance of the Jasmine Blossoms" on the guzheng.

A humorous sketch by seniors Anton Frolenkov and Joseph Lynch titled "Dead Calculator" brought the house down. Spoofing "Monty Python" while poking fun at the TI-83 calculator and a certain hapless salesman, the skit got big laughs from an enthusiastic audience.

Another big hit was the creative and entertaining performance by Hsing, junior Lawrence Cho and freshmen Daniel Hwang and Nathan Kung. All four skilled cellists played "Bolero" by Ravel - on a single cello. Eight hands on one cello kept all eyes captivated and fascinated.

Intermission brought along a chance for the audience to take a look at the astounding artwork displayed outside of the auditorium. Paintings, sketches, photographs and drawings by Magnet students attracted a lot of attention from the already-wowed crowd. Portraits of Willie Nelson and photographs of cherries were only a few of the different visual artistic samples.
Kyujoo Choi, Elizabeth Lee and Michael Lee kicked off the show with traditional Korean drumming. Alex Joseph
Kyujoo Choi, Elizabeth Lee and Michael Lee kicked off the show with traditional Korean drumming.


The second act was equally exciting, starting off strong with a jazz tribute to Rick Astley's "Never Gonna Give You Up." With musicians keyed up on the piano, trumpets and saxophones, the group had the audience never wanting to "give them up". A musical and Bengali dance performance by seniors Rutvij Pandya, Jitu Das, Anika Manzoor and Debattama Sen integrated cultural meaning with great rhythm for an evening highlight.

The second to last performance of the Red Hot Chili Peppers' "Dani California" by seniors Ji Jung, Anshul Sood, Aaditya Chandra-Sekar, Victor Wang and David Wasser reenergized the weary crowd as Jung fulfilled his rock star fantasy, running across the stage and performing back flips through the musical interlude.

The Senior Act, which traditionally closes the show with humor and creativity, drew out waves of laughter from the appreciative audience. A skit parodying some of the Magnet Program's most revered teachers pleased the crowd, as did a surprise cameo by recently retired former Magnet teacher Ralph Bunday. As the night drew to a close, the senior class rushed the stage and proudly busted out their own rendition of Queen's "We are the Champions" as a shower of confetti rained to the floor. Considering the great performances put on during MAN and the deafening applause from the audience, they certainly did seem like champions.



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  • Josh Snyder (View Email) on February 8, 2009 at 9:47 PM
    Pro: It was an awesome show.

    Con: I missed it
  • jia on February 9, 2009 at 1:15 AM
    i wish i couldve been there
  • Anonymous on February 9, 2009 at 9:55 AM
    you forgot to mention nearly half of the acts that performed, especially some of the best ones, like maxwell's silver hammer
    it would have been a better article if there were fewer holes riddled throughout the article
    • xD on February 9, 2009 at 6:57 PM
      Katie may have left out some acts because the acts included SCO staff members and SCO probably doesn't want to appear biased by mentioning its own staff members. But if you feel any good ones deserved to be mentioned, just mention them here.
      • eh? on February 10, 2009 at 1:28 PM
        that has to be the lamest reason ever. there's always the option of adding one of those "blah blah is whatever editor on sco."

        sco does it all the time for those political activism articles, which from what i've seen print editors are always involved in.
      • Anonymous on February 10, 2009 at 6:38 PM
        I know that you are trying to help explain the reason the writer wrote how they did but you must note that out of the total number of acts(19 excluding the senior act), 9 of the acts had members of the Silver Chips staff (online or print) in them. Now, out of the total number of acts mentioned in the article(8 excluding the senior act and the cello), 4 of the acts had one or more members of the Silver Chips staff in them (none of who were mentioned at the bottom of the page). That doesn't seem as if the writer took extra care in making sure that she did not over mention Silver Chips members because usually only one or two are mentioned in an entire article. I am not saying that Silver Chips should not mention any Silver Chips members but that cannot be used as an excuse for the reason certain acts were picked.
        • chillaylay on February 10, 2009 at 8:11 PM
          OMG WHY is everyone freaking out? this is a positive review. she wrote nice things about their performances. she said you did a great job. take a compliment, and get over it

          it's a review, not a recap. she doesn't need to mention every one of the 19 acts
    • Think again on February 10, 2009 at 5:04 PM
      Or, despite what you think, those acts just weren't that noteworthy.
      • Anonymous on February 13, 2009 at 3:03 PM
        maxwell's silver hammer was definitely noteworthy and had the crowd reenergized before dani california
    • chill on February 11, 2009 at 10:55 PM
      chill out the whole thing was great. back off of katie.
  • Anonymous on February 9, 2009 at 3:51 PM
    I think it's a little insulting to reduce the effort of the emcees to "cracking a few corny jokes" between acts.
  • whoot whoot on February 9, 2009 at 6:31 PM
    that show was amazing! i so loved those four guys on the single cello, you guys are awesome
  • Anonymous on February 9, 2009 at 6:53 PM
    i actually thought the mc's were funny
    • Anonymous on February 10, 2009 at 6:28 PM
      So did I.
      • Anonymous on February 10, 2009 at 7:53 PM
        just because something is corny doesn't mean its not funny. stop being so sensitive
  • .... on February 9, 2009 at 10:38 PM
    Magnets gettin pressed. Back down.

    Sum yall get so defensive for no reason.

    Not erything yall do is perfect.
    • Anonymous on February 10, 2009 at 8:15 PM
      That comment about being perfect is incredibly unnecessary.
      They were just mentioning how some of the really good acts were completely not mentioned.
    • C on February 12, 2009 at 10:56 PM
      Lol.
  • who are you: on? on February 10, 2009 at 8:56 PM
    Personally, I thought the MCs did a better job last year. Saying that the jokes were "corny" is really an understatement and very nice of the writer. The bad puns made me laugh because I felt obligated to.
  • humm on February 11, 2009 at 5:14 PM
    i think it's funny how nearly every single review of MAN done in the last few years has a zillion defensive comments at the bottom of the page.

    this leads me to two conclusions: magnets read chips too much, and you guys are waaaay too sensitive. chill out. go worry about your SATs or something
  • senior 09 on February 11, 2009 at 7:14 PM
    this has nothing to do with MAN, but i just wanted to say that (you should add comments to the galleries...) i think it's hilarious that logan and ellen are smack on chips when i see them (and their...hugging etc) EVERYWHERE around school for some weird reason
  • Sona on February 14, 2009 at 12:08 AM
    congrats and great job to everyone who performed! wish i could have seen the show!
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