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Someone help those poor Madrigals!

Original post made on Apr 21, 2010

Thanks to an erupting volcano in Iceland, the Mountain View High School Madrigals have spent the past week trapped in Paris. But they're making the best of it.

Read the full story here Web Link posted Tuesday, April 20, 2010, 6:45 PM

Comments (13)

1 person likes this
Posted by jane
a resident of North Whisman
on Apr 21, 2010 at 4:23 pm

Take care, you teens and parents! Years from now you will have quite a story to share with others...what an adventure.

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Posted by Foxy Loxy
a resident of another community
on Apr 21, 2010 at 5:45 pm

LIke global warming, this volcano nonsense is based on decisions by people who know nothing about flying or airplanes. The warning issued by the London VAAC regarding Volcanic Ash Concentration was done by the same liars that played with the temp data and con-cocked global warming. Flake science causes these problems. I would suggest that the Madrigals along with Delta Airlines sue the pants off these modern day chicken littles.

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Posted by charley
a resident of Old Mountain View
on Apr 21, 2010 at 6:17 pm

I am 62. I have never been to Paris, or even Europe. I am working 2 jobs trying to keep my house. I had to put a half gallon of milk back in stock last night because I was short of grocery cash. Boo hoo, Wah, wah, Madrigals. Typical overindulged "me centered" Silicon Valley Brats. So sorry you are missing your boyfriends and families.

The adults covering this story need to grow up as much as the kids.

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Posted by Doug Pearson
a resident of Blossom Valley
on Apr 21, 2010 at 8:46 pm

The New York Times online has a Recommend link that can be pushed (it says Thanks and can't be pressed again--at least that visit); they also keep track of how many recommendations they get. I think that's a good idea. Maybe the Voice should try that.

Other sites may have other variations including Bad as well as Good. I don't know how far down that path you would want to go.

In response to charley, I am 75, I have been to Paris and Europe and enjoyed it. I'm sorry charley has never been able to go there, but I'm glad the Madrigals and Gunn students did get the chance, even with the extra cost of the extra days.

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Posted by Don Frances
Mountain View Voice Editor
on Apr 21, 2010 at 9:05 pm

Don Frances is a registered user.


I know what you mean. You put up a cute little story and some crazy person starts ranting about volcano conspiracies and then a guy named Charley becomes enraged because he never got to go to Europe and can't afford milk.

What can you do? I'm not sure how helpful those buttons are. Someday, it may be, all comments will require registration, at which point there will be fewer commenters but those that do will more likely have something to say.

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Posted by eric
a resident of another community
on Apr 22, 2010 at 12:22 am

Maybe so, Don, but I think you should use your moderator authority to weed out mindless comments bashing on a group of kids that have done nothing to deserve angry rants from a bitter man.

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Posted by Anne Sanouillet
a resident of Old Mountain View
on Apr 22, 2010 at 1:11 am

As the Nice, France-based grandmother of one of the Madrigals, I'd like to admire the way the choir director has turned adversity into opportunity for the group. The trip to London and Paris was already a superb occasion at their age to get a glimpse of life in the European capitals, and being able to stay on longer in Paris can hardly be considered a major disaster. What their "poor" parents will be obliged to shell out this year will most likely be repaid with interest by this experience in living in a foreign society.

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Posted by Foxy Loxy
a resident of another community
on Apr 22, 2010 at 8:49 am

Somewhat of an insult there Don. That dig would seem to be beneath your standing as a leader of a public product. But hey I could be over respecting your position. I suggest you look more closely at the facts. It seems to be all over the news. But let's take a big one.

"With aircraft having flown successful test flights for several days, recriminations have begun over why governments took so long to give the green light to the aviation industry, The head of the airline industry body, IATA Director General, Giovanni Bisignani, told the BBC:"This is a European embarrassment and it's a European mess". Or how about Richard Branson Virgin Atlantic boss: "I don't think we will ever, ever see a blanket ban again"

As for the goofy claims of safety, I put my trust in those who fly and make the airplanes and engines over some puffy keyboard cubical hamster trying to meet his/her global warming quota.

This was and is an over reaction by some bumbling bureaucrat. Remember Mt. Saint Helens? Did we in the US shut down flights from Denver to New York or LA to Seattle? nope we did not.

Reality, facts and the truth my dear editor.

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Posted by parent
a resident of Waverly Park
on Apr 22, 2010 at 9:36 am

I second what Eric said.

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Posted by Meesh
a resident of another community
on Apr 22, 2010 at 5:59 pm

The parents and relatives of those kids sure have got a big bill on their hands. Better pay that off quick; the interest will build up like crazy. I, on the other hand, will be donating my money to Doctors without Borders.

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Posted by Student
a resident of Castro City
on Apr 23, 2010 at 7:31 am

Charley. Sure they're are spoiled los altos hills kids but maybe you think about the kids like me who have 2 jobs as a junior in high school high schools and who have payed the whole trip off with they're own money because they're parents couldn't afford it. Or the kids who have worked the whole year to get scholarships. Sorry you haven't traveled but don't take it out on us.

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Posted by Randa
a resident of Old Mountain View
on Apr 23, 2010 at 5:54 pm

I was a chaperone on this trip and have just gotten back to Mountain View. Like all the other families, we saved and planned so my daughter and I could take advantage of this amazing opportunity for our children to share their wonderful music with audiences in London and Paris while expanding their knowledge of themselves and other by travelling outside our country. None of us planned for the additional 6 days of Parisian expenses and, for some families, this will be a real financial hardship. I can assure you that Jill Denny did an AMAZING job of controlling the costs while keeping the kids safe, busy, and in good spirits--and singing for even more audiences all over Paris during the extra days!

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Posted by Anonymous
a resident of another community
on Apr 26, 2010 at 11:54 am

As a former madrigal, I understand how important donations are to the program. However, as much as I sympathize with the adults and the money that has been accumilated from this setback, (and I do not understand the full extent of the financial situation), I do see how less expensive compromises could have been made to save money.

Putting the students in an extended stay at a hotel that has one of the most pricey views in Paris probably wasn't the best idea.
As much as they claim to have looked, it was probably more convenient to just keep the kids there rather than moving them all to a different location. I'm sure that in the whole of France (or even England) you could have found one cheaper hotel. If they went to the news for donations, they could have appealed to hotels as a stranded student group to potentially help them out. In all honesty, it doesn't sit well with me for Jill Denny to be asking the general public for donations, especially considering that the department relies on a substantial amount of donations as it is. You have to understand how it can be hard for people to sympathize when(according to this article) they've been spending money on the same lodging and on keeping the kids "entertained."

I agree with Anne and Charley, as I, for one would not complain for a second about being in Paris for an extra week and would relish every moment of the experience. If I was one of those students, I would rather do more impromptu perfomances (or rehearsals) and would not want my director or chaperones spend even MORE money, just to keep me happy. I would personally be fine with making sacrifices so that even more money wasn't lost. It shouldn't be an extended vacation, but a humbling experience. Basic accomidations and food would be more than enough. It's not like the kids are babies that need to be kept "busy" and in constant amusement, high school kids find ways to keep themselves entertained. Then again, that's just me.

Having said all of that, I think that a fundraiser that raises money through performance or a cd of the music is an excellent idea, and a MUCH better way to raise the money. Rather than saying they might do it, the group should already be getting that organized for when they get back. In fact, I'm sure that they probably are. Raising the money through art and performance rather than hoping for other people to give money has more integrity to me. I hope that they raise the money they need to get all the funds back.

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