Sunday, November 22, 2009


On Friday at the beginning of class, one of my students asked me if she could make an announcement. I told her as long as it was quick that would be fine. She proceeded to write on the board in Chinese. The only thing I could read was 999 written in the middle of her Chinese characters. When she was done writing she announced that the whole class was going to the KTV that afternoon, and then she turned to me and told me I was invited. Normally when I am invited to do things with students I try to graciously duck out because I don't want to blur the line between Teacher and friend. I want them to like me, but I don't want them to think that they can treat me like on of their buddies, especially since I am only 2 years older than them. Well, on this occasion almost all of my students turned to me and asked, "are you coming?" "do you have plans?" "you want go with us?" "are you bringing your husband with you?". And then the statements and pleas started. "You have to come" "your husband come with you" "we meet at 1:30 and we wait for you". Even though their English is a little broken, there was no mistaking that almost all of my students wanted and expected me to come, and they expected McKay to be in tow. So, we went. McKay came a little bit grudgingly because singing karaoke, especially in front of a bunch of Chinese teenagers is not his cup of tea. But, McKay loves me, and he wanted to have a new adventure so he came for part of the time.

When we got to the KTV I was really surprised at how fancy and upscale it was. My class had their own private room reserved, room 999. It was really cool. There were 2 levels to the room, the bottom level had 2 tables surrounded by couches, a computer monitor to choose your songs, a bar area, two T.V. screens and a little stage with a monitor and a stool for you to perform on. The second level had a long counter with bar stools looking down on the lower level performing area, a private bathroom, a big circular booth where the students were playing some dice game, and more couches against the walls. On top of all the space and amenities the ceiling was mirrored and the room was lit up by fiber optic and neon lights that kept changing colors. The room was fairly dark, but it was really colorful and pretty.

Waiting for our turn with a handful of students.

It took them a while to get the karaoke equipment working properly, but once they did my students decided that McKay and I were going to sing a duet first. That worked out just fine because McKay was only going to be there for 30 minutes so he needed to go first. Their English song selection was lacking a little bit, and if they singer is at all popular they have a name in Chinese, so only the unpopular singers have the artists name in English. The First song we came across that we both knew (and could actually tell what the song was) was barbie girl by Aqua. McKay and I made complete fools of ourselves by singing loudly and a little off key, and we danced around a little bit to make it even better. When that song was done they told us we were doing another one, so we sang Apologize by One Republic. It didn't go so well... but it was very entertaining for the students and we got a lot of applause from them.

Singing Barbie Girl and Apologize
A little after that 3:00 hit and McKay had to go back home because he had a class to teach, so I was left alone with 25-30 Chinese kids, luckily I knew the majority of them. I voluntarily sang a solo because I happen to enjoy singing, and they happened to have one of my all time favorite songs, Cry for You by September. It made me feel really good to hear them all clapping and cheering for me when I was done. I thought I would be done after that but we stayed at the KTV for another 2 and a half hours, so, I ended up singing a number of songs. I even sang a duet with one of my students. Her English name is Day and she is quite the little singer. For some reason Avril Lavigne is really popular here in China. I like Avril Lavigne as well, but it still amazes me that out of all the English speaking singers out there, Avril is the one the Chinese people have latched on to. Well, I sang a duet to an Avril Lavigne song with Day, because Avril's songs were the only American songs she knew. Before we left they got me to sing Hot'N'Cold by Katy perry, Halo, by Beyonce, and like 4 other songs that I cant remember at the moment. It seemed like every time there was a break in people who wanted to sing, or whenever someone started to sing multiple songs in a row they would decide that it was teachers turn to sing again. It was fun, but I wonder what my students think of me now and what kinds of comments I will be met with in class next week. I had fun though, so it doesn't matter too much.
(I couldn't hear myself because I had a cold, and it was really really noisy.
Plugging my ear seemed to help.)

Since then I have been wondering whether or not a KTV or a high class karaoke bar would have any potential in america and think it would be really cool to open one, and then I remember that most people back home wouldn't think that paying to possibly embarrass yourself in a fancy karaoke club would not be that cool. Oh well, at least I got to enjoy it while I am here in China.

McKay singing his guts out...

Sitting with Yolanda, Day, Stefanie, Vanessa, Miracle and Alice

With Ozzie and Easy Glass
(I know, Easy Glass? He picked it, not me!)

Outside the building with some of the girls. They told me that it is very popular to take your picture in front of that water fall thing, so, we decided to be very popular.

Thanks 3C kids, I had a blast!


Heather said...

That looks so fun! They had you sing a lot of songs!

Kayli said...

That does look so fun! I'd love to sing karaoke in front of a bunch of random Chinese teenagers. Haha! If you open up a place like that, I'll be sure to come. :)