Remember your graduation day? Remember the excitement you felt the morning of, when you left the house before your guests with your freshly pressed gown on a hanger and your cap that your mother somehow managed to have securely attached to your gown in hand? And if you were blessed enough to have your own car, you could not wait to place that tassel around your rearview mirror after graduation was over. The 20- step count walk across the stage was your moment to shine. Your moment to reap the benefits from all of the long hours spent in the library studying (well cramming for most) for exams. All of the finger calluses you experienced from typing countless papers (some of which where not yours, but others that paid a nice penny for your talents). I don’t know about you, but when I traipsed across the stage I was at my proudest, my pinnacle, I had reached the mountain top and was able to see a glimpse of what was soon to be known as my destiny. Only my wedding day would be the other time in my life that everyone felt and everything was about me!
So now I fast forward to a school in Hawaii called Kahuku High and Intermediate School. Known as “The Pride of the North Shore” the school educates approximately 1600 students in grades 7th thru 12th. Visually and with the assistance of my limited math ability, this is looking like a pretty large school. Where am I going with all of this you ask?
The school’s 2015 graduation went viral after the entire graduating class performed musical renditions and dances from various pop and hip hop artists such as Wiz Kahlifa, Bruno Mars, Mark Ronson, Jackson 5, and Silento’s “Watch Me.” They did the Nae, Nae and a tribute to their Maori culture by doing a Haka dance. Some comments in cyber world have been attacks on their character, upbringing, and class or as some feel the lack of.
I respectfully disagree with the naysayers on this one. I base my reasoning on the history of Pomp and Circumstance. Dictionary.com defines the word as: a splendid celebration with ceremony and fuss; also, the title of several military marches played at ceremonies, such as graduations. In the 1900’s Edward Elgar’s creation of the song Pomp and Circumstance was his biggest claim to fame. Its creation ignited excitement in England with shouts of “play it again!” It also caught the ear of the great contralto Clara Butt who planned to perform the piece at the crowning of King Edward VII before he fell ill.
So when did the celebratory nature and the reasoning behind the songs creation fade or get redefined? I have my suspicions but that is a whole other blog post. So I ask, what is wrong with a little 20 second dance when your name is called? Or a collective desire of the entire graduating class to create a High School Musical. This is the one time when you and your support network are one. They have waited patiently for your name to be called and are ready to shout and cheer for your accomplishments (and depending on where your name falls in the alphabet, the wait could be much longer than a New York minute). so why can’t you celebrate?
I say hats off to the collective and conscious effort of the students at Kahuku to make their special day truly once in a lifetime. Watch their video below.