Tuesday, July 19, 2011

Strathmore: Taikoza

As you all know, I'm always looking for new and fun summer activities to take Gage to or have him be a part of.  That's why I was super excited when the 1st week of summer, I was contacted by a manager from the Strathmore- a performing arts center nearby.  Mike was nice enough to invite Gage and I to one of their summer concert series.  And you all know, I love a good kids concert! 

The Strathmore, located in Bethesda, MD, is a hugely diverse center that has a little bit of everything and something every member in your family can enjoy.  It's a center that features 'a lively and diverse program of art exhibitions, concerts and performing arts programs, and literary lectures and events.'  If you check out their website, there's so much to choose from.  I was especially interested in their summer family entertainment.  There is a free summer concert series every Wednesday night at 7pm and on Thursday mornings there is a Backyard Theatre performance both at 930am and 1130am.  Unfortunately for us, Bethesda is a little bit of a hike and we won't be able to make any of the Wednesday night concerts because of Gage's bedtime.  However, we were definitely in and excited for the Thursday morning Backyard Theatre!  What makes these concerts so neat is the wide diversity of entertainment.  The Strathmore has organized it so there are shows from all around the world and each week focuses on a different genre/area of music.  I think for older kids it would be a really cool learning experience.  You can check out all of the different concerts right here

In any case, because we couldn't make it to the night concerts, Gage and I packed up last Thursday morning and headed for Bethesda.  It was quite a ride, being that I live outside of DC and at that time in the morning there were still people headed to work.  Thank goodness for the HOV lanes!  The traffic sucked, I won't lie, but we persevered and made it with just a few minutes to spare.  The Strathmore was very easy to find and the parking was wonderful.  It was right beside the TENTED stage.  And yes, I was very excited about the tented stage, as hot as it's been around here lately.  What a great idea!  We didn't imbibe in one, but they were giving away free sno-cones as well, which seemed to be a big hit with the older kids!  We checked in, spread out our blanket and it wasn't long before we got to hear some Japenese drums, called the Taikoza!   The performance lasted about 45 mins, which was the perfect length for kids and we couldn't have asked for more beautiful weather.  Gage danced some, but was mostly mesmerized by the big drums and bright costumes of the drummers and other performers.  It was definitely a neat performance with some Japenese dancing as well.  Again, an AWESOME learning experience for an older kid.  Did I mention the concert was right behind the beautiful Strathmore mansion?  So pretty!  If it hadn't been close to nap time, we might have checked out the interior, too!

Unfortunately I didn't get any pictures good enough to post.  We were sitting on a hill and Gage was dancing, so I had to focus on watching him and making sure he didn't fall down, instead of taking too many pictures!  It is too bad that the Strathmore is a little too far for us to travel to on a regular basis.  It took us a little over an hour in rush hour traffic.  They have some pretty awesome programs.  If you live in the area, I highly suggest you checking out their website and heading over there.  In addition to kids programs, they have all genres of music for adults.  Let me know if you check it out!

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