Video: SHS concert glows for Christmas

The Samoana High School Music Department put on a beautiful Christmas Concert — ‘Jesus is the Reason’— this past Thursday to a packed house at the Gov. H. Rex Lee Auditorium, which was led by the school’s Tautua Choir and the Samoana Band. [photo: Jeff Hayner]

The Samoana High School Music Department put on a gala Christmas Concert this past Thursday evening to a packed house at the Governor H. Rex Lee Auditorium. Called 'Jesus is the Reason'  it was led by the school's vibrant Tautua Choir and school band. The choir— which is led by Choir Director Pati Pati, had 205 members singing Carol of the Bells, along with patriotic hymns such as Star Spangled Banner and the Amerika Samoa National Anthem.
The band, which is led by Tavita Lemisio, also played Christmas classics that included, "We Wish you a Merry Christmas", Angels We Have Heard on High" and "When the Saints Go Marching In" — as well as Beethoven's Ode to Joy from Symphony 9.
“We have been working two months on this, and it turned out fabulous," said the Choir Director.
 "The kids should be proud of themselves. They worked hard every day and it showed with their performance. We thank everyone who came and helped out with their support,” said Choir Director Pati, adding that some choir members will be going on tour in March next year to Apia, Samoa.
Tavita Lemisio said the school’s young band just started playing this past August, and only started reading notes when school started, after which they began to learn how to play their instruments.
“The hardest thing with the band is that we only started here at the high school level, because there is no band program in the elementary school level,” said Lemisio. But when it comes to the choirs, he said, they sing everyday in the schools, churches and other places at an early age.
“At the high school level is when they start to learn how to play these instruments, and I guess that’s because they are expensive. From 1996 to 2000 there were elementary school bands but then they started to fade away. Now we only have a few high schools with bands and we are the largest one. I hope someday there will be more schools, especially elementary schools with bands,” he said.
Samoa News spoke with some of the choir members who said they had a great time  performing for the packed house at the auditorium. “I had a a lot of fun singing in front of my family, especially my mom and dad,” said one choir member. Said another, “I'm glad Pati is here working with us and it's good to hear the band playing at these events. I hope there is a lot more of these type of events with the band and choir.” 
There were approximately 500 people in attendance. The Tautua Choir also sang again yesterday at the High School Music Festival at the auditorium.
A video clip of the performance can be viewed on YouTube of the performance.

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