Saint John — It’s Christmas concert season again, when the province’s children take to the stage to sing, dance, act and awkwardly recite seasonal poetry.
And while many stars twinkled on stage this year, none of them outshone seven-year-old Hannah Mason according to her grandmother Judy Hughes.
“Oh my gosh, she just took my breath away!” gushed 62-year-old Hughes. “She is so comfortable up there, and she never missed a beat. If she wasn’t my own, I’d be telling you a star is born! I know it sounds terrible to say but she was the best in her class by far.”
Over lunch at the west-side Coffee Mill, Hughes provided a comprehensive review of the entire event from start to finish to her best friend, Pauline Winters.
Kennebecasis Elementary School’s annual concert started at 10 a.m., but all of the seats were gone by 9:15 a.m. “It’s a good thing I sent my son-in-law early to save our seats,” she said, praising her own foresight. “I mean, we took up an entire row for just our family! I felt terrible for all of those parents standing at the back, but the early bird catches the worm!”
The event started with a Christmas drum circle to “Little Drummer Boy,” where the children didn’t sing but rather banged on pails, did cartwheels and twirled around using drumsticks with ribbons attached. “It’s a lot different than when we had our kids,” she marvelled.
Then, the junior choir took to the stage, where the kids stopped singing every time they had to do a hand motion. A boy in the back was beating a drum that no one could hear, while a little one with curls and a Santa hat screamed her song as loudly as possible. Next an older girl with a Christmas-themed eye-patch recited “‘Twas The Night Before Christmas.”
“She scratched her cornea,” gravely explained Hannah Mason afterwards.
After 1.5 hours of successive acts including “O Christmas Tree” in German, “Feliz Navidad” in Spanish, and “Silent Night” in French, Hannah Mason took to the stage with her Grade 2 class. To snap a quick picture, Hughes navigated her way up front through the sea of parents crawling around on the floor making videos. She froze in place as the Grade 2 class starting beat-boxing and bopping to “Hip Hop Reindeer.”
“She was a delight, and I could tell all of the other grandparents were jealous!” she confided. “She was singing and dancing up a storm! She’s at least a double threat, maybe a triple someday! Who knows!”
Then, some parents that she was standing in front of broke the spell. “‘Down in front, lady!’ they said, can you imagine? At a Christmas concert no less! Some people are so rude!”