Alperton Community School’s International Evening Show 2013

On a very humid 4th July 2013 evening, a team of Hizen members (Armando, Nari, Chi and Antoine) performed a 20 minute Kendo demonstration as part of Alperton Community School’s International Art evening to an audience consisting of students, parents, school governors, local businesses and educational directors, and a special guest the Mayor of Brent.

We took the stage when we were introduced as members of Hizen,  the audience was very excited to see Kendo. Armando began to address the audience to introduce what Kendo is and to explain its nature and purpose. While Antoine was seated in Mokuso, Nari and Chi waited for Armando to signal to start Kata. The audience let out gasps as the cuts stopped just before making contact. After the pair completed the first seven forms of Kendo Kata Armando asked everyone to put the rest of their armour on. Whilst this was happening he explained what Kata is and how these techniques can be applied to Kendo training.

The Kendo part of the demonstration started with Nari receiving Antoine’s Uchikomi, shortly followed by Chi’s. After a few rounds, Armando put his armour on and joined the rest of the team to show a typical Jigeiko practice. The audience enjoyed the demonstration; often punctuating cuts with sounds of excitement. After changing partners twice, we finished with Ai-Kakarigeiko.

Upon the final Rei to the audience, we received a big round of applause. The audience was very appreciative and everyone who saw us afterwards commented on how enlightening, enriching and educational the demonstration was.  However, some teachers asked if they can have a few Shinai to use on some naughty students!