BY N. JAFFARY
MD Express, a new club at MD is dedicated to highlighting the importance of mental health and well-being. On March 3, they held a school-wide assembly full of artistic and musical performances to start a conversation about mental wellness. Performances featured some of MD’s own talented students as well as beloved alumni such as the Deputy Chief of Police and his band.
The morning started off with introductions from the Students MCs Emma Bignell, Ayesha Hadi, and Noor Jaffary, and Dan Gaudry, a representative from Friends For Harmony. Dan set the mood by engaging the crowd with a school cheer. After his introduction, the first of many musical performances started with a Burlington-based group, Zaya. They put on an energetic performance! Afterwards, there was a personal message for the Mustangs from Sarah Sin, a member of the indie-rock band Walk off the Earth. Sarah is good friends with Zaya and wished that she could have been there in person to be part of the morning.
Express members and other students started early in the morning, setting up chairs for students and teachers.
A side-stage view of Zaya and her group. Definitely a music-filled morning!
Mrs. Graham’s junior drama students performed an original slam poem about the reality of with struggling mental health.Their poem was beautifully performed and received glowing reviews from the audience. MD is especially proud of Jessika, Charlotte, and Nicole for their wonderful performance.
The girls caught up in their performance on stage. Way to go Mustangs!
The highlight of the morning of course, was the appearance of former Mustangs, Deputy Chief of Police and his band Jojo & The Chintos. Chief Nishan Duraiappah and his ensemble (yes, most of them were also MD grads!) performed their covers of Renegades by X-Ambassadors and Wake Me Up by Avicii. The crowd loved them and were happy to see them return to the gym as rock-stars. The band also shared their struggles with mental health, explaining that since their jobs were extremely stressful and demanding music became an outlet. Their contributions to the conversation were invaluable and we are proud of the success that our Mustangs have achieved.
Mustangs return to the stage to discuss the things that really matter!
The closing act for the morning was DTB (Danielle and the Boys), a band started by the senior Music SHSM students at MD. The uplifting music and the original lyrics were especially written by the band to promote the importance of mental wellness. DTB stole the show with their performance and were a great act to end with.
Their announcement really set the crowd abuzz; they are looking for students to be part of the music video for their song. If you would like to be a part of this video that will be showcased during Mental Awareness week in May, please see Mrs. Francis in the CO-OP office.
The assembly was a wonderful initiative taken by MD Express to start a conversation about taking care of one’s mental health. They are also planning future events such as a yoga and dance workshop. The assembly was a success and we look forward to seeing more from MDs staff and students. Use the #MDexpress to be a part of this conversation.