Alumni Stories

Since 1963, the Ye Wah and the Mandarins organization has offered young men and women a rewarding activity combining the Performing Arts with discipline, pride, good citizenship and sportsmanship, Asian traditions, and other important values. Adding friendships, travel, common goals, and more makes the “Mandarins Experience” a unique one, unlike any other youth program.

We hope this has helped our Alumni throughout their teenage, young adult, and adult years. Indeed, many have become doctors, teachers, dentists, lawyers, engineers, and parents, among other successful careers. But what has the “Mandarins Experience” meant to them, and what have they gained through it? Select the names below, for stories. We sincerely thank Alumni Members who have graciously allowed us to share their thoughts with you.

ALUMNI SPOTLIGHT: click photo for info

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MANDARINS ALUMNI CORPS IS ACTIVE!

The Mandarins Alumni Corps has been rehearsing since March for two exciting performances this summer. 

Our first “gig” was at the invitation of the corps director, JW Koester, at Family Day on June 18. Under perfect weather conditions (It’s usually super hot!) the Alumni Corps, including guard, percussion and brass, entertained the corps members, family, and friends at Rio Linda High School. The performance of “Prosperity” from the 2013 Mandarins show, “Destination America”, composed and arranged by Key Poulan, was executed with energy and excellence! Special thanks to guard section leaders Kim Wong and Joyce Fukuchi, percussion section leaders Adam Grant, Shekhar Khedakar, and Ben Prima, and brass section leaders Chris Langton and Dan Fong.

After the drum corps wowed us with the debut of THE OTHERSIDE (Becca Anderson – Creative Director), the combined Mandarins Dragon Brass and Alumni Brass played a stirring performance of our corps song – Year of the Dragon (Philip Sparke). The emotion of 116 brass players was something very memorable.

The next performance of the Alumni Corps is at our home show, DCI Capital Classic, on July 8 at Sac State’s Hornet Stadium. You don’t want to miss this fantastic evening! If you wish to join the percussion or brass, it’s NOT too late!

Contact:
Adam at adammgrant@gmail.com 
Dan at Dan.Fong@mandarins.org

COLOR GUARD ALUMNI TREATS

On Family Day 2022, the Alumni Color Guard gave each 2022 Mandarins Color Guard member a Goodie Bag of items to take on Summer Tour. What’s in the bag, you ask? Lacrosse Muscle Recovery Balls, N95 Masks, Gatorade, Snacks/Gum/Mints, and THE OTHERSIDE logo note card with motivational quote.
 
Ohana Leis were given out after the Family Day show.
 
From the Alumni Color Guard, with special thanks to Victoria Yee, Kimi Chow, Jennifer Chin, Sandra Yee Ichiho, Brian Coon, Laurie Moy, Janene DelMundo, Kalei Cablay, Cathy Lee, Jeremiah Wade, Lynnelle Lee, Michele Advincula, Kim Wong, and Joyceline Fukuchi. 

FAMILY DAY FEAST

The Mandarins Alumni-Hosted Dinner returned for its 7th year in 2022. Appreciative members and staff raved about the meal which featured fried rice, chow mein, grilled teriyaki chicken, stir-fried veggies, lumpia, vegetarian dishes, homemade cookies, and cupcakes.

This tradition is another opportunity to connect current corps members with alumni members, some of who marched in the Ye Wah corps over 59 years ago.

After dinner, alumni, families, and fans were treated to a preview of the corps’ production, THE OTHERSIDE.

Thanks very much to the 2022 meal sponsors Mike & Nanci Jan, James Chew, Michael Gammill, Robert Lew, Mark Dong, Holly Ong, Kimi Chow, Elliott Lim, Les Wong, Kevin Fong, Joyceline Fukuchi, Lisa Icard, Alice Swift, Laurie Moy, Liane Watanabe, Kevin Bowlson, Cristina Flores, Doreen Yee, Scott Jow, Karen Wu, Marilyn Chin, William Lubina, Steve Wong, Chris Thorntona, and Tony Antonelli.

MANDARINS DIAMOND ANNIVERSARY

The Mandarins will be celebrating their Diamond Anniversary in 2023 and we need your ideas! We plan to use this upcoming year to intentionally build and develop the cohesion of all Mandarins alumni through activities and events which celebrate you and your families!

What events do you want to see in 2023? Fill out the form here to submit your ideas! (This is not a commitment to anything, we just want your ideas.)

DCI TOUR KITCHEN CREW

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Several decades after they marched in the Ye Wah Color Guard, Jennie and Joyce returned to the Mandarins as Kitchen Crew members for the 2014 DCI Summer Tour. 

Word has it that they thoroughly enjoyed themselves, and the hard work didn’t slow them down at all! 

Booster Club and kitchen crew manager Cathy Sackett said it was a blast having Jennie and Joyce on her team. 

Alumni, here’s your chance to give back to the corps by volunteering for kitchen crew duties. Inquire here for more information.

50th ANNIVERSARY CELEBRATION

We celebrated our Golden Anniversary on September 21, 2013, with over 360 alumni corps members, instructors, and family.

The Planning Committee did a great job with location, souvenirs, entertainment, and more. 

Many thanks to Marilyn Chin, Roxie Tom, Diana Gin, Jim Tabuchi, Steve Wong, Alan Chinn. Karen Wu, Scott Jow, Jillene Sturgess-DaPrato, Kim Wong, Chris Thorntona, Jennie Fong, and Lonnie Wong for a magical evening.

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