Tedx Youth Day

YP junior reporter Sophie Cheung
YP junior reporter Sophie Cheung |

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Jake Shimabukuro plays the ukulele
Universal Children's Day, on November 20, was the inspiration behind Tedx Youth Day, a programme of self-organised events around the world inspired by the original US-based Technology Entertainment and Design programme. It is aimed at encouraging curiosity, igniting new ideas and empowering the world's young people.

In Hong Kong, there were a large number of excellent speeches focused around one message - find your passion, and pursue it. One speech stood out from the rest - Jake Shimabukuro's Music is good medicine. Shimabukuro is a world-renowned ukulele player who won a Grammy for a joint performance with cellist Yoyo Ma.

The ukulele has four strings and a range of two octaves, but amazingly, Shimabukuro - strumming it like a mini guitar - played a variety of genres with this spectacular little instrument. First, in flamenco style; then classical; before finishing with a song by The Beatles. Apart from his outstanding performance, he inspired everyone to dare to dream.

Another impressive speech was provided by three instructors presenting Laughter Yoga, who asked the audience to get on their feet and start forcing themselves to laugh. "After a while, fake laughter will become real," they said. At first everyone felt slightly self-conscious, but - yes - eventually everyone's artificial laughter became authentic, despite us not laughing at anything. Tedx Youth Day in Hong Kong proved better than I envisioned. All the speakers urged us to chase our dreams and passions. I will be sure to do that from now on.