All posts by Mrs. Hillman

Childrens’ Musical Theatre, January 31st

Children’s Musical Theatre

Let the Grade 4 students take you to a land called Enchantia. This is a special occasion, which only comes around every few years, where the inhabitants of Earth can finally make contact with the inhabitants of this magical land so be sure to accept your invitation. With 50 Grade 4’s involved, there is certainly a lot of creativity being expelled, both on and off the stage. This is the show where even you will be part of the action. Without giving too much away, it is worth coming for the entrance alone.

Where & When: January 31st at 6pm in the FAT for Family and friends  (there are 2 other daytime performances for ES students at 1pm on January 31st and at 8am on March 1st)

AMIS Delegates travel to festivals

The first Arts trip for 2013 left on Wednesday, with 10 students travelling to Beijing to take part in The Association for Music in International Schools (AMIS) Middle School orchestra and choir festivals.  Then next Wednesday 2 more students head for Yangon, Myanmar for the band festival. Each festival consists of 3 days of workshops, large group playing or singing, and a final concert on the Saturday night. The 12 students all gained their places at the festival by handing in audition tapes early last semester. The selection process is quite rigorous so the following students can justly feel proud of their achievement:

Moon Hwan (Kyle) Kim (8)

Seok Hyun (John) Ma (8)

Akira Sugata (8)

Mitsuki Sugata (7)

Anne Safran (8)

Akshay Sharathchandra (8)

Jin Young Cho (8)

Eve Coleman (8)

Isaiah Filio (8)

Sebastiano Matera (8)

Young Joo Lee (8)

Won Ho Song (8)

Events in November

November Update

The first two weeks back after break have been extremely busy for the Fine Arts Office: there are a total of 5 trips going out, 4 of which are international events, and also many auditions taking place. In addtion to to this the premier Dance event and main HS Music concert for Semester One are taking place.

Global Initiative Network in Singapore- MS and HS delegates attend

Last year ISM hosted the Global Initiative Conference, (GIN) a massive undertaking with over 400 students in attendance. This year the conference has shifted to Singapore, with two school’s co-hosting a joint MS/ HS conference that brings together 650 students from around Asia. This was an excellent opportunity for ISM to send their first ever MS GIN delegates. Ms. Gitanjali Paul, Mr. Tom McLean and Mr. Cory Wiley chaperoned 6 HS students and 6 MS students for the 3 days of the conference. Besides participating in various workshops focused around the theme of ‘Time to Act; Time to Change’, students also went on ‘eco-excursions’ and listened to world-recognised keynote speakers from various NGO groups. There was also time for some fun and socialising in the form of a Peace Concert and Global NGO fair.

The workshops on the final day encouraged students to apply what they had learned to their own schools and to start formulating plans that encourage environmental and social change within their own community. Every year ISM formulates a school wide priority, which the faculty uses to guide improvement in a certain area of school life. This year one of these goals was formulated and implemented by students. The plans that derive from the GIN conference will be used to further enhance the environmental sustainability guidelines already being developed by the committee of students spearheading this initiative. If you would like to know more about this conference, please refer to the website:

Excellent Result for ISM at the Robotics VEX Competition in Taipei

This year a new course, Robotics, has been introduced to the HS curriculum. The Robotic club has already been a popular afterschool activity for some time and ISM attended its first robotic competition last year. So, as our team of 8, packed several robots up for the trip to Taipei on Thursday November 8th, hopes were high that our ISM Robots would impress.

The updates throughout the weekend were all promising and in the end one of our ISM teams made it to the final! With 16 teams in attendance, this was a fantastic achievement for such a new program. In the finals the ISM Team Narwahl robot and a Taipei American School (TAS) robot were in an alliance that was beaten by an alliance of two other robots by TAS.  This robot team consisted of Rom Villarica, Steve An, Steve Nom and Lucas Ramos.  The team also won the Inspire Award for the most helpful/ inspiring team and robot.

SEAband 2012

SEAband is the South East Asian Band Festival for both MS and HS Music Students. This year the event was host by Faith Academy nad so ISM decided to send 17 musicians to take part in 2 days of workshops that culminated in a concert on Saturday, November 10th. Learning to work as a big band and having the opportunty to work with 8 othere schools from around SE Asia made the event both memorable and educational. Pictures are to come.

Model United Nations Travels This Week

HS students are gearing up for IASAS cultural events this month. The first group travelled to Taipei American School on Wednesday for IASAS Model United Nations (MUN). If you are unfamiliar with the workings of an MUN conference, please feel free to refer to the event website:

Essentially, students are assigned roles that shadow the real positions used at the actual United Nations. Students then spend many hours researching and preparing to fulfill the responsibilities of their role in a simulated sitting of the United Nations. This year’s conference theme is ‘Public Health and Sustainable Development’.

One of the big honors of any MUN conference is being chosen to be an Officer of the Secretariat and therefore chair a specific MUN committee. This year we have two students taking up these challenging roles: Aksar Bonu will be chairing the United Nations Economic and Social Council while Mariella Salazar will be chairing the World Health Organization.

MS Drama attends Bangkok ISTA Festival

Back in August, Ms. Purdue and Ms. Grev selected a group on 20 students to attend an International Schools’ Theatre Association Drama festival in Bangkok. The festival runs from the 16th to the 18th of November and is hosted by Ruamrudee International School. The theme for this festival is ‘Fluidity and Change’.  Waves and canals and channels of communication. So organisers have opted to start with a tour down the main water artery of Bangkok city, the Chao Phraya River, with the aim of exploring the waves and canals as channels of communication. The field trip will culminate in a visit to a sacred Thai temple where the connection between old and new will be explored.

On their return to Ruamrudee, the students will then participate in workshops that develop different drama skills whilst developing the ideas explored on the trip.

AMIS Music Selections Are Made

November is the month where a lot of selective arts events run auditions and then start putting together performances that are often taken to international events. This process actually started back at the start of October when MS Music students submitted recordings to The Association for Music in International Schools (AMIS) in the hopes of attending one of the Asian festivals. The results were announced last week with 12 ISM students being selected to travel to various events.  This year the Asian Middle School Honor Orchestra &
Middle School Honor Mixed Choir will be held together and is hosted by the International School of Beijing from January 23rd to the 27th, 2013.  Four strings players and a choir of 6 will travel to this event. The next week, from January 30th to February 3rd, the International School of Yangon will host the AMIS International Asian Middle School Honor Band with 2 ISM musicians in attendance.

IASAS Cultural Convention Auditions

Auditions for Music, Dance and Drama Cultural Convention delegates are in process. Some names have already been announced but I will post a whole list here once the final decisions are in.

Forensics and Debate groups are already working together and will make selections once all students have had a chance to come to grips with the conventions of each discipline.

This year the Cultural Convention ‘season’ is especially exciting because we are hosting the Art/ Dance/ Drama Cultural Convention from February 27th to March 3rd, 2013. This will require a large group of student and adult volunteers so check your calendar and see if you are able to host any of the visiting delegates!

The month ahead in Fine Arts

This month there are many Arts events right here at ISM to come and enjoy:

  • November 20th– Grade 5 and 6  Beginners’ Music Recital in Little Theatre @ 5pm
  • November 23rd– Tri M Jazz Night in the LT @5.30pm (tickets are being sold at the cashier for this event and then all proceeds are contributed to charity)
  • November 24th– K-12 Dance Recital in the FAT @3pm
  • November 29th– HS Music Concert in the FAT @5pm (Theme: Myths and Legends)

HS Play on next week. Get your tickets now!

A reminder that the HS Play, an adaptation of Markus Zuzak’s best selling novel The Book Thief, is on next week. The story centers upon Leisel Meminger, a young German girl living in the midst of World War Two. As a book that is part of the Grade 10 reading list and also taught in MS Honors English, the play should prove to be both educational and entertaining.

If you are interested in getting a taste of the narrative, Random House Publishers has exerpts from the novel on this website:

Tickets are available from the cashier. Here is the poster designed by Grade 12 student Tanya McCorkle:

2012-13 Calander

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Pictures from Jazz and Dance Exchange

IASAS Jazz Exchange was held in Taipei between the 7th and 9th of September, with 10 ISM students taking part in the intensive weekend workshop. Instrument-specific instruction formed the early stages of the workshop whilst Big Band work, specifically in the area of improvisation and performance, became a focus in the later parts. All this culminated in an evening performance. The students were asked to consider how improvisation can be used to enhance the performance for audience members and musicians alike.  Here are some images taken during the weekend:

 The next weekend 10 ISM Dancers travelled to Singapore for the IASAS Dance Exchange. They were treated to 6 different workshop possibilities from instructors who hailed from various parts of the Globe. The classed ranged from Ballet classes for different experience levels to a class on London Contemporary taken by Michael James, a London-based dancer. Filomar Tariso, a Filipino dancer currently based in Singapore, was also on hand to lead a class entitled Contemporary Fusion. This class utilized both contemporary and traditional Filipino music to inspire “a very stylized, neoethnic contemporary class”. Perhaps one of the more physically challenging lessons was the suspenion training workout, which looked at ways for dancers to develop strength and stamina. To round off the hard work on a more social note, all students and teachers attended Potted Potter, a show that has also recently toured in Manila. Here are some pictures of the weekend:

September in the Fine and Performing Arts: IASAS Jazz and Dance Exchanges/ Preparation for the HS play and Filipiniana Day

Now that we’ve been back a month, things are really starting to get busy in the Fine and Performing Arts area of ISM. This past weekend saw dance workshops running for HS Advanced and Company dancers . The tutors were professions from USA based company Hollywood Dance and are in the Philippines on a professional engagement but made time in their busy schedule to run six workshops. The dancers worked hard and were very much challenged by the diverse styles explored.

The first IASAS exchanges are leaving this month. First up, we have the Jazz Music Exchange travelling to Taipei from the 7th to the 9th of September. The weekend focuses on collaboration with other IASAS schools to develop and enhance the musicians’ talents, both as an individual and as a member of a band. One part of the weekend will focus on working as a Big Band whilst the other part involves specialist instrument workshops.  The group consists of the following musicians:

Kang Heun Huh/ Yifeng Yang/ Kyu Hee Cho/ Suk Jin Hong/Ariana Mapua/ Ji Min Park/ Benjamin Jemenez/ Sidney Tinny/ Dauki Kukriyama/ Richard Shih

A week later the IASAS Dance Exchange will be taking place in Singapore between the 14th and 16th of September. The exchange program is varied with six workshops, ranging from Contemporary Fusion to London Commercial Jazz and even some suspension training thrown into the mix. The group of dancers attending includes:

Dominique Purdue/ Bianca Jimenez/ Isabel Lilles/ Nacho Tambunting/ Stephanie Kim/ Chaewon Kim/ Chandlar Lorch/ Maxine Adarme/ Natalia Pena/ Samantha Villanueva

Meanwhile, back at ISM the rehearsals for the school play are in full swing. The cast of 40 and crew of 45 is putting on an adaption of novel The Book Thief. This students taking on key roles on and offstage include:

Student Directors: Natalia Pena and Paula Palamino

Stage Managers: Hara Connell (Head), Lenny Alcid (Tech), Adrian Wibowo (Backstage)

Actors: Lloyd Taylor (Death), Juliana Ocampo (Young Liesel), Dominique Purdue (Old Liesel), Daniel Lloyd (Hans Hubermann), Natalia Pena (Rosa Hubermann), Max (Jacob Hobbins)

The show is set in Germany during WWII and explores four years in the life of Liesel, a young girl who is fostered by Rosa and Hans Hubermann. Liesel’s reactions to war are tracked by two narrative voices: an older version of herself who reminiscences about past joys and difficulties and Death himself, who provides a wider context of what it is like to live in the midst of so much suffering. Opening night is October 18th; in the meantime, get yourself a copy of the book and start reading.

The PISTA council is also in the middle of organising the entertainment for Filipiniana Day 2012. Mark your calanders for October 25th and get ready to enjoy food, music and dance!


HS Play Auditions

This year’s HS play is an adaptation of Marcus Zuzak’s novel The Book Thief. It is set in Nazi Germany during WWII and explores the lives of  working class German people during Hitler’s reign. The plot focuses upon  Liesel Meminger, a young German girl who is fostered to Rosa and Hans Hubermann because her mother is too poor to feed her. The family lives on Himmel Street in Molking, a small town near Munich, the birthplace of Nazism. Liesel is illiterate but has a way with words and Hans soon teachers her to read. With little money available for luxuries such as books, Liesel takes to stealing to feed her new-found passion for literature. Her accomplice in many of her escapades is Rudy, a boy who is the physical prototype for Hitler’s imagined ‘superior race’; however, Rudy’s his innate desire for equality means he does not buy into the propaganda.  As the play progresses, the Hubermanns risk arrest by hiding a Jewish man, Max,  in their basement. Liesel strikes up a power friendship with Max because they share a clear understanding of what it is to be haunted by nightmares. Through her experiences with the Hubermanns, Rudy and Max, Liesel becomes conscious of the insidious evil that is fascism and the dangers it holds for all the people she loves most.

When people begin reading The Book Thief, the most striking element is perhaps that the story is narrated by Death. The adapted play will keep this character as one of two central narrators, which leads to moments where images of the war outside Himmel Street are explored. Death also has a group of four Alter Egos; after all death is ever-present and everywhere all at once. The other central narrator will be an elderly Liesel Meminger, who upon her death is finally reunited with a book that she once though was lost forever the fires of WWII

Besides the main and supporting roles, there are many exciting minor speaking parts, which will be taken on by members of the ensemble. We really need a flexible ensemble this year because they will be taking on a wide variety of roles: soldiers, Hitler Youth members, Death’s helpers and small children to name a few.

Obviously, we also need a dedicated and creative crew to make the magic happen: costumes, props, set art, publicity design, projections and film, back stage  crew, stage management, lighting, sound, makeup etc.

Please click on the link below for details of characters that you can read for:

Cast List for The Book Thief

Once you have decided what role you wish to put yourself forward for, please sign up the Performing Arts ‘Announcements’ notice board, which sits on the wall near the AMR between the FAT  two dressing rooms. The auditions will be held on the 9th and 10th of August after school in the FAT (Thursday and Friday this week!), with Monday the 13th set aside for callbacks and new or late returning students who may have missed out the week before.

Specific audition scripts are avaliable for the following characters: Old Liesel, Young Liesel, Death, Max, Hans, Rosa, Giltine, Yamaraj, Thanatos, Pesta, Alex, Frau Holtzapfel, Ilse Herman, Hans Junior Huberman.

If you wish to audition for minor and ensemble roles only then please choose a supporting role from the list above that suits the minor role you wish to go for the closest. If you can’t decide then I would prefer that you take on one of the Alter Egos of Death so that I can play with piece of casting bit.

As always, if you come prepared with your lines revised, you are much more likely to impress. If you are auditioning for lead you can try for two roles but you must be prepared if this is the case. I may ask you to read in for parts other than your first choice. It is certainly to your advantage to try these suggestions out.

I can’t wait to get started. Opening night is the 18th of October so Saturday the 6th and 13th of October are compulsory for all cast members. Leads will need to commit to at least 5 Staurday rehearsals. Please do not audition for lead roles if this is not possible.