BLOG PAGE: A View from the Bridge
By Mr. Clayton
By Mr. Clayton
Last week I thanked my lucky star that I had been fortunate enough to land a ticket to watch Madonna in concert in HK. The concert was miles away and we drove through the rain but the show was worth it for sure. She certainly played for way more than 4 minutes. I can’t say that I am a die-hard fan, maybe borderline at best. Now don’t tell me that you don’t like her or never heard of her, because like many people of my age she remains an iconic part of our lives. It is certainly her music and her persona that people cherish.
There are several things that mark her out as being always in vogue. One is obviously her longevity in the incredible and competitive field of popular music and culture. In fact it seems that she has always been a kind of sound track to our lives. For a start she certainly did not look her age (around 57).She must have inherited some good genes from her mother and father. She can teach us a lot about change and how to manage it on a personal level. She has reinvented herself many times. In the early part of her career she was a real trendsetter, totally into the groove. Now she has adapted and she has been able to move with the times and not become a bad girl, but a genuine superstar, a ray of light for us all. She has an uncanny knack of knowing when to take a break, a kind of holiday, if you will, and when exactly to return and take a bow. She certainly is very resilient and can teach us about taking advantage of opportunities.
The second thing that I admire and that I’ll remember about her is her amazing creativity. The show was a tour de force of songs, dance, music, theatre, audience participation. It was a sheer celebration of a show and the number of highly talented people on display was breathtaking. Behind the scenes there was an army of people, some girls and some boys who were working in marketing, lighting, sound, merchandising to mention just a few. On stage Madonna’s advice to everybody was summed up in one simple phrase, ‘express yourself.’ This is great advice when applied to school and it appears in many forms.
Recently I have attended the primary Mandarin assembly and I have been thoroughly impressed by the art exhibition which showcases art from both streams: clear example of a masterpiece in the making. I have seen great pieces of artwork all over the primary school too. Our students know how to be creative, and so do most of our teachers, those that aren’t promise to try and you can’t ask for more than that!
Another area of life that she has arguably influenced is that of promoting the image of a strong and in control woman. She has always had a great sense of what it feels like to be a girl in the modern world. In fact the deeper and deeper that you examine her influence many have likened her to a modern day Joan of Arc. Her critics have accused her of being a girl gone wild, but her advocates say that she has been misinterpreted and that she merely has a rebel heart. I think that she has been instrumental in ‘turning up the radio’ on women’s rights, a true blue women’s role model. Obviously at school it is important for us to uphold the values of equality and tolerance and to get together and fight racism and sexism to name but two.
In conclusion, I do realise that not everyone will share my views, that’s just human nature. I also understand that as she gets older some girls even might ask of Madonna, who’s that girl? I say to those that don’t like or respect her, it would be crazy for you to ignore her influence and that you need to open your hearts and give her one more chance. I don’t need to justify my love for her, she is definitely not my best friend, I’m sorry but there is clearly no substitute for love as the audience proved. As we left I felt a little sad, the power of goodbye I guess. However, what cheered me up that night was that the voices of everybody were as one- they felt Madonna had conquered HK and just like Caesar himself she could justifiably live to tell the phrase, ‘Veni, Vidi, Vici.’