Sunday, November 24, 2013

Pat's Schoolhouse Graduation Musical 2013 - Jerald Has Graduated from Preschool!

Jerald has finally graduated from preschool and shall be advancing to his next level of education in 2014! As his beloved uncle, i am thankful to be given the opportunity to attend his graduation musical yesterday. 

Location was at the 126 years old grand dame of Singapore: 
Raffles Hotel's Jubilee Hall!

In addition to the musical "Land of Oz", there was also individual class skit (known collectively as "Magic of Love") performed by the six graduating classes from both Mount Emily and Serangoon branch. 

I was late!!! Luckily my seat was at the back and my arrival created no disturbance. Actually, back seats were the best as they were elevated; making it much easier for me to take pictures. 

Jerald's class skit was the fourth and talked about a terrorizing monster snake that had created much havoc in a small village. 

As expected, many parents in the audience were taking videos and photographs to record these precious moments. Everyone was reminded to be considerate towards the people sitting at the back and that there should not be any flash. 

Coming back to the story, a Taoist priest was eventually engaged to chase away the snake (i initially thought the priest was Jerald) after much discussion among the simple villagers! 

Jerald starred as one of the many adorable villagers! 

With blinded encouragement from the priest, all the villagers were persuaded to join in the crusade to expel the snake from their village.

They failed because of the incompetent priest! Nevertheless, the little priest has had to save his "face" and suggested to the villagers that a human sacrifice would be necessary to stop the snake from creating more harm. 

Pink girl volunteered despite the objections from her parents but instead of resigning to her fate, she battled the nefarious creature and won victory over the great evil!

End of drama.

For a production involving kids no more than seven years old, i was taken aback by the quality of these skits! Bloody, i don't even remember having all my classmates performing such stuff when i was in kindergarten! 

Granted the dialogue was dubbed in Mandarin, the preschoolers displayed utmost confidence in presenting themselves to a big audience, even if they were masquerading roles way beyond their tender age.

Of all six dramas, i particularly enjoyed the one on Hua Mulan; a legendary lady warrior in ancient China who decided to take her father's place when he was called up by the imperial court to be conscripted in the army.

The battle scene was impressive! 

And came prepared with violence that was unusually endorsed by the many parents seated in the audience who yelled "fight" and clapped with laughter when the kids finally did. Tsk tsk. 

Of course, our dear Hua Mulan returned to her hometown after twelve years in the battlefield and was betrothed to a general by the emperor. 

After all six skits, the actors and actresses came together to perform a dance item for the audience; if i recollect correctly, it was something about love, harmony and stuff.

Conclusion of the first segment for the night.

Reception for all guests while the kids prepared for the next heavyweight item of the night; Land of Oz!! 

Cute Jovyn grabbing a bite of the delicious cake! She couldn't stand the darkness in the hall and was super pleased to be out. Plus, she totally love cakes! Oh, and sweets! Sighs...

Now a bit about the charming Jubilee Hall (i could not resist not talking about this as many of you are aware i really like old, heritage stuff) - it was designed in the Victorian style and was built as an extension of Raffles Hotel in the 60s or 70s. 

While everyone is using energy saving lighting, the bulbs in Jubilee Hall were still the filament type! I don't know what the eco activists would say but i thought the filament bulbs are more appropriate to create that classy Victorian ambiance.

The foyer outside the Hall, where the reception was held. I cannot imagine how much the rental would cost although we must keep in mind that Raffles Hotel is Singapore's oldest (and likely most expensive) hotel! 

Back to the show; Land of the Oz. 

Jerald again! 

The staged drama was divided into different acts with each class performing each act. That means we would see a few Dorothy, a few heartless tin men, a few cowardly lions and a few brainless scarecrows! 

Love this little actress for her evil portrayal of the Wicked Witch of the West! She was so full of vile; i was prepared to step onto the stage to banish her to the underworld! 

Banking on the strong love the group of four had cultivated during the journey, the sixth Dorothy finally managed to destroy the wicked witch! 

The Tin Man, Scarecrow and the Cowardly Lion had their wish to come true. 

Wizard of Oz didn't have any power to speak of (i bet he must have gotten his degree from a magic university not endorsed by the Singapore government) to help Dorothy to get home although his cuteness still managed to shine! 

He offered a hot-air balloon but as we are all aware of the storyline, it took off without Dorothy on board. Anyway, she got home via the magical shoes she had been wearing all along. 

Grand finale where all the performers congregated!

The last picture included all the dedicated teachers who were involved in the extravaganza! It's never easy to teach young children and to be able to get all of them to work together for such spectacular performances; i am incredibly impressed!

Woah, the school really treats their charge like stars! We were all requested to leave a passage for the performers to parade from the theatre! Kaoz, star-like treatment that only lacked a red carpet! 

Photographs of our big boy who has grown (not just in waist size). It was barely a few years ago when i held him in my arms and to think he is already going to primary school next year. Damn, i do feel old. 

Okay lah, a few photographs of the brat who is still living in my house. 

For our dear Jerald, i am wishing you all the best in your next journey and to enjoy your childhood like every child deserves to! 

"Education is not about competing with your peers on who is ranked top and comparing who is better than the other. 
It is about learning who you want to be and to enjoy that complicated yet simple process without the pressure piled on by many parents" 

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