Second Advent Offers More Storytelling

Sunday, 08. December 2013

by Daniel Davis Wood

The Ecole’s Advent celebrations continued tonight with more special meals, more ‘Sing and Swing,’ and more storytelling.

As was the case last Sunday, students dressed up in formal clothing to enter a dining hall decorated with paper lanterns, pine needle wreaths, and other festive ornaments. Tonight’s pasta meal gave students a choice of three sauces — tomato, bolognese, and seafood — and once again, after dinner, students gathered in the entrance to Max Cassirer Haus for a ‘Sing and Swing’ session with Frédéric and Micha.

After the music died down, everyone split into two groups — those who prefer speaking German and those who prefer speaking English — and sat down to listen to readings of folk tales with overtones that evoke the spirit of the festive season. German speakers returned to the Grossen Saal where Fränzi read another story by Selma Lagerlöf, ‘Christmas Eve’ (‘Die Heilige Nacht’). The story finds a grandmother reciting the tale of the nativity to her granddaughter when both of them, for different reasons, are unable to attend church on Christmas Eve. In Haus am Bach, English speakers gathered to listen to the opening pages of One Thousand Nights and a Night, the tale of Scheherazade’s marriage to King Shahryar of Persia.

With these two Advent celebrations and the Nikolaus Festival now behind us, we have only Friday’s St. Lucia festivities and the annual Christmas Play still to come before all our students leave the school to return to their families and spend the end of the year at home.