Monday, May 19, 2014

Singing at the Norwegian Embassy

On Friday the choir had the honor of singing at the Norwegian Embassy in Mexico City as part of their Bicentennial Constitution Day celebration. We were invited after someone from the Embassy saw us perform for Poland's National Independence Day back in November and we've been rehearsing since March.

Rehearsing at the Embassy
Source: Staccato's Facebook

They gave each of us in the choir a ribbon lapel pin with Norway's colors and coat of arms to wear during the celebration.

my ribbon lapel pin

Before performing, the choir with one of the Embassy Counselors who
helped us with the Norwegian pronunciation
Source: Staccato's Facebook

Before performing
Source: Ana's photo

Friday's program and my Norwegian ribbon lapel pin

Ambassador Merethe Nergaard giving a speech before introducing the choir
Source: The Norwegian Embassy in Mexico City's facebook

We sang Mexico's National Anthem, Norway's National Anthem ("Ja, vi eslsker dette landet"), "Vi ere en Nation, vi med" (a song that expresses that Norwegian National Day should also be a day for children), and a medley of "El Cascabel" and "Cielito Lindo." 

lyrics to the Mexican and Norwegian National Anthems in Friday's program

Performing  (I'm the one blocked by the director in the photo - hah!)
Source: Staccato's Facebook

You can listen to Norway's National Anthem below. 

**Edit - The Norwegian Embassy posted a video on their Facebook page of us singing "Ja, vi eslsker dette landet", which I've included below:

It went well: the crowd was attentive (always a plus and not always the case!) and we received positive feedback. One woman asked me how long we had been rehearsing to perfect the pronunciation and memorize the songs. Another woman commented that we "spoke" Norwegian better than she did and she comes from a Norwegian family. I assured her that our Norwegian was limited to those two, very practiced songs, but thanked her nonetheless.

After the speeches and performances, it was time for food, drink, and mingling. Waiters and waitresses circulated through the crowd, serving salmon, caviar, and another type of fish as appetizers. There was wine, beer, and a Norwegian liquor (Akvavit?) to drink. From there, the buffet opened. I had every intention of snapping a photo of both the buffet table and my plate, but after I ate everything I realized that never happened. I tried a small serving of everything, so my plate went something like this: salmon, roast beef, egg, salmon, cod, salad, and more salmon.

Much like the song "Vi ere en Nation, vi med," there was a special focus on the children in attendance. There was special kid food, including sausages, waffles, and popsicles; a troll-shaped piñata; a clown; a moon bounce; and a showing of Disney's Frozen, which was inspired by Norway.

I'm a sucker for sweets, so I obviously enjoyed the dessert table. There was kransekake (Norwegian Almond Ring Cake), brownies, iced cinnamon rolls, cake with Chantilly cream and fruit, a cake that reminded me of a tres leches cake and was decorated like Norway's flag, and ice cream in cone bowls 

Kransekake - Norwegian Almond Ring Cake
dessert table

It was an honor to be invited to sing and a fun (and delicious!) day! 

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