The road was filled with endless conversations as the Koinonia Touring Choir and the Teh Campanas Handbells Ensemble traveled to Texas. The twelve-hour ride would be the beginning of an unforgettable event. The first day was spent performing for the Abilene Adventist Junior Academy. Although it was a small crowd of five students, it didn’t stop them from producing a big applause. Mr. Yves Clouzet allowed the young students to try out the handbells. The next stop was to the home-church of Logan Vega, a senior member of Koinonia: South Austin SDA Church where the students delivered a full performance.
After a full night's rest, the students were up and running, ready for a fun day to Six Flags and Riverwalk. “When I rode the boat to tour the river, I was amazed with the beautiful plant life everywhere,” explained freshman Shelby Waller who plays in Teh Campanas.
After a day of break, the musicians set up for their next performance which took place at the Hays Nursing Center. Koinonia lifted up their music folders and sang from the bottom of their hearts and Teh Campanas overflowed the room with a moving melody. The senior citizens were touched and some began to tear up because of the music. “We went there thinking it was just another concert, but in the end, we realized it was more than just playing bells,” said sophomore Dominick Maldonado, “it was us sharing the love of God through music.” It was a beautiful way to begin God’s Sabbath on Friday evening.
On Sabbath, the musicians performed for the San Marcos SDA Church and took over the entire service with a variety of songs. Students Austin Rotinsulu and Ashley Halvorson participated in the service by leading the scripture reading and prayer.
The students toured Southwestern Adventist University and the nursing department. Koinonia was asked to do an impromptu performance for the SWAU students. SWAU asked the students to stay by and watch the Acrofest performances that happened in the gym. It was exciting to see others perform their passion and do amazing things.
All of the music department students wish to thank the sponsors and hosts who took care of the students and made sure they arrived safely to and from Texas. Music department directors Yves and Melissa Clouzet, along with Charles and Kristi Reeves, Kent Kast, Bill and Sherry Hay, Clinton and Leah Anderson, and Erika Faría all played big roles in making the trip happen. Erika Faría is a college student from Brazil and is a volunteer this semester at Campion. She is working with the Clouzets to learn how to be a music teacher. She conducted the Teh Campanas performance of “Bound for the Kingdom.”
Obed Barrera, a Koinonia member reflected on the tour experience, “It was fun performing in front of little children and older teens. It was nice to see their smiles! I hope that our tour inspired people to come share God through music.”
Christian Marin, Senior, Guest Contributor