U.S. Pacific Fleet Band ‘Big Wave’ concludes engagement in Samoa

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Apia, Samoa – After a successful week of jazz and music, the U.S. Pacific Fleet Band “Big Wave”, concluded its outreach and engagement in Samoa at the International Jazz Day reception held last night at the U.S. Embassy Residence, Vailima. 

Leading up to International Jazz Day, the Band were honored to engage with students from the Seventh Day Adventist Lalovaea College, the Le Amosa o Savavau Preparatory School, Papauta Girls College, and the National University of Samoa.

The Band had a great time sharing with students jazz music and showcased their brass tunes and rhythms. The energy and enthusiasm were off the charts as the band engaged in a cultural exchange with the students singing a few songs together at the end of the performances. 

“Music is a universal language. By sharing our music with others, we are able to create moments of joy, unity, and understanding that can bring people together and enrich their lives. Sharing music allows us to inspire, uplift, and connect with others on a deeper level, fostering a sense of community and mutual appreciation for the beauty and power of music,” said Chief Vincent Moody. 

The Band also had the opportunity to showcase their style of music with the Samoa Victim Support Group-Campus of Hope, it was an empowering and incredible moment to see how the songs resonated with the children at the Campus of Hope as they sung along and dances to the tunes.

 

U.S. Pacific Fleet Band visit and perform for the children at the SVSG – Campus of Hope.

The Band’s performance at the Tanumalala Prison received a similar reaction of appreciation and excitement, with a notable change in atmosphere set by the band to kick-start their week, in song, cheers and engagement.

“Music has the power to bring people together and uplift spirits, and we are honored to have been able to play a small part in spreading positivity and hope to those who need it most,” said Deputy Chief of Mission Noriko Horiuchi. 

The highlight performance of the week were open to the public to listen to the U.S. Pacific Fleet Band share their music and hear a rendition of “Samoa Matalasi” written by Samoan artist, Lesa Ilalio Tuanai.

MU2 Owen Sczerba plays the saxophone alongside the Samoa Royal Police Band during the morning parade on April 30, 2024

These performances included the Samoa Hotel and Hospitality Associations famous Night Market, where the band had the opportunity to provide entertainment alongside the Samoa Royal Police Band, the Island Touch Band, the Ombudsmans Band and the Samoana Jazz Band. The second public performance was a pop-up concert at the ACC Building alley, which drew excitement from Saturday shoppers and the public as they this was a rare sight for a Band to publicly perform a variety of songs and music.

“Sharing jazz music with the people of Samoa serves as a bridge that connects diverse cultures and fosters a greater understanding and appreciation for one another,” said U.S. Ambassador to Samoa and New Zealand, Mr. Tom Udall. 

Samoa is the Home of Taula. Enjoy responsibly.

The final collaboration for the Band was a Masterclass in collaboration with the National University of Samoa and the Samoa Royal Police band. The U.S. Pacific Fleet Band connected with local musicians, aspiring artists and sound engineers to share their passion for music and creativity.

On the day of International Jazz Day, the Band had the privilege to march alongside the Samoa Royal Police Band to raise the flag of Samoa and play the Samoan anthem “Vii o le Saolotoga.”

This event was a unique and special collaboration as in the spirit of cultural exchange it allowed the U.S. Pacific Fleet Band to share some tips and knowledge on march music with the Samoa Royal Police Band. 

The finale performance for the Band included a night filled with jazz and music, at the ‘Journey of Jazz Reception’ held at the U.S. Embassy Residence, Vailima to celebrate jazz and highlight music from local artist such as the Sinalei String Band and the Samoa Royal Police Band. 

The U.S. Embassy extends its gratitude to Samoana Jazz and Arts Festival for the great collaboration. Special thanks and acknowledgement to the Samoa Tourism Authority, the National University of Samoa, the Samoa Royal Police Band and the Government of Samoa for the support.

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