By Spring Ashleigh Lin Yiting (22J07)
“Onward Singapore''. As National Day approaches each year, these two words are always sung differently – with more gusto and a greater sense of pride. Yesterday was no exception, a day which possessed another notable difference: the first live mass celebration in RV after two and a half years.
The bird’s eye view from the school field yesterday bore witness to a beautiful sea of red Li Hua T-shirts -- the school gift for this year’s celebrations. Their wearers buzzed excitedly and admired the precision of the Uniform Groups’ (UG) parade march. This red sea remained unparted and revelled in the performances in the school hall.
A vast sea of red watching the parade march in the school field
It is wondrously apt that the entire RV community was joined together again in patriotic celebration to commemorate a highly unifying event in Singapore. The feeling of togetherness was undeniably conveyed through the high spirits and lively atmosphere.
I believe that the performance was incredibly refreshing and a much needed reversion to pre-pandemic times. Nothing beats the experience of being seated among a crowd and watching an elaborate performance unfold. The performers’ expressions are more clearly seen, the emcees’ inflections are more closely heard, and the chance to watch is more greatly appreciated.
National Cadet Corps Girls perfecting their moves during a rehearsal
Jacob Kwek Yu Le of class 1C is one of the many Secondary One students who experienced their first live mass celebration in RV yesterday. He shared that compared to previous online celebrations, “it was very new and fresh”, and had “more interaction as seen in the Kallang wave and mass singing.”
Hopefully, this celebration will mark the gradual return to normalcy with more live mass events. As we look back on this year’s celebration, let us shine the brightest spotlight on its behind-the-scenes preparation.
Unknown to many, the Organising Committee (OC) of RV’s National Day celebration put in their heart and soul to make the performance a success, staying back in school frequently to facilitate rehearsals and staying up late to discuss over Zoom calls.
National Day celebration 2022’s wonderful OC members!
OC chair and Street Dance (SD) performer of class 22J20, Chyann Cheah Yu Han, shared that “it’s exciting to spearhead something that has not happened in so long.” When asked about the challenges faced, she stated that it was tiring to juggle between planning the celebration and practising for her SD performance, but she pushed through with the help of those around her.
Chyann in deep concentration at a rehearsal
Chyann added that she wants audience members to know that the OC has worked very hard to actualise the celebration and hopes that the audience will appreciate how much effort has been put into it. She shares that the audience holding even a fragment of this thought would mean that all the planning and execution was “very spectacular”.
SD performer of class 22J01, Jamie Chan Jie Min, revealed that putting her item together “was quite rushed” as SD had “only started learning the choreography after the mid-year exams and experienced many delays”. Nevertheless, she is content that SD has “worked hard together to produce a good performance”.
Jamie (bangs) rehearsing with her SD members
To the contingent members who marched under the hot afternoon sun, the performers who polished their moves and became one with their instruments, the emcees who practised their lines, and the OC who ran the event as smoothly as possible, this is a grateful nod to all for working so tirelessly for the celebration.
The Road Ahead may seem daunting, but Tomorrow’s Here Today where Home is and Singaporeans can be counted on to Reach Out For the Skies In a Heartbeat. And just like this year’s official National Day song goes, let us always remember that we will rise Stronger Together.
Happy 57th birthday, Singapore!