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Insight | Cultivating the Performing Arts at Huili

09 November 2018
Performing arts is a discipline that encourages teamwork, whether that is in writing, creating or during the act of performing. Here at Huili, pupils have the opportunity to engage in creative collaboration, a skill that they will continue to develop inside our rehearsal space. At Huili, pupils receive a truly holistic education. Themes that are explored across different subject areas are all interconnected. It is important for our future leaders to see what they are learning in a practical setting and performing arts gives them a platform for self-discovery and collaboration. Why is performing arts important? Performing arts is fun! A true Huili pupil knows that in order to be the best, they must try their best in all subjects. There are five aspects to performing arts here at Huili that develop pupils into well-rounded young people and future leaders. 1. Emotional intelligence The ability to identify and manage your own emotions, and those of others, is a highly valued trait, both in society and our careers. Many workplaces now test job applicants on their emotional intelligence. Performing arts often relies on teamwork where pupils have to interact with each other to achieve common goals. Developing empathy in these situations is important. Pupils will be challenged to explore real-life situations and challenges in a safe, low-risk way. By understanding how others work, feel and see the world through drama performances, they will inevitably develop emotional intelligence. 2. Confidence and resilience Performing arts is about performing. This takes self-confidence and assurance. Being able to make and then move past mistakes, which are inevitable, builds a greater sense of confidence in pupils. This is an invaluable skill for making public speeches, sales pitches or simply being convincing during an academic or professional interview. Many pupils suffer from shyness when they start attending classes, but they will gradually become more confident as they find ways to articulate and communicate their ideas.

3. Communication skills Communication comes in many forms, be it written, verbal or non-verbal. Drama can help pupils develop great public speaking skills, become more comfortable with their bodies and learn to read other people’s body language. Communication skills can be accelerated through performing arts, as pupils learn to use verbal and non-verbal techniques in new ways to deliver their intended message. 4. Discipline and commitment Studying a performing arts subject usually means rehearsing or practising on a regular basis. Music and performing arts pupils who have regular practice routines develop good discipline and know the value of commitment. Rehearsal reinforces positive work habits that are applicable to all areas of life.

5. Creativity Above all else, the performing arts are about being creative. Through creative expression, pupils learn to understand the world in a unique way, preparing them to navigate challenges they will doubtlessly encounter in later life. There is also great crossover between performing arts and other disciplines – the creative thinking and study techniques learned during rehearsal can be transferred to all areas of study.  

"Creativity is intelligence having fun!”——Albert Einstein

Huili pupils have many opportunities to be creative. They understand the value of the arts and actively engage in music, visual art, design and technology and performing arts within the curriculum. Pupils also engage in creative CCAs. This term alone, pupils have enjoyed the opportunity to take creative CCAs in dance, drama, school production, art, set design, Chinese ensemble, choir, orchestra and many more. Pupils also get the opportunity to showcase their creativity here at Huili. Some of our pupils have already performed at our prestigious opening ceremony in front of their peers, staff and even government officials. On November the 2nd, we had our first annual Huili Arts Festival. This event typified what it means to be a Huili pupil. Grades 3 to 6 were invited to take part in a variety of sessions including a workshops delivered by our fantastic partners Round Midnight, a theatre group from the United Kingdom. Pupils took pride in their houses by exploring the theme of ‘Identity’. There was music, movement, drama, the creation of a large-scale, whole-school mural and more. The pupils certainly made the school proud by showcasing their talents. A big thank you goes out to all of those staff members involved for delivering such an excellent day. We are already looking forward to making it an even bigger and better event next year. Our Mini Fest for Grades 1 and 2, Little Red Riding Hood, and the Winter Showcase are fast approaching and the pupils are busy at work getting ready for them. There will also be our School Production in March and Summer Concert in June to look forward to.

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