Panthers of ISKL #207: The IASAS Music CulCon Delegates (2024)

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Panthers Of ISKL - IASAS Music CulCon Team

HS IASAS Music Team Photo

From March 6 – 10, 2024, 27 HS students headed to the Singapore American School (SAS) for Season 2 of IASAS Music!

A few special shoutouts go to Abhig R. (’27), who the piano adjudicators chose to perform his solo in the masterclass as ISKL’s representative. Charlotte B. (’24), whose solo was featured at the Friday night honor showcase concert, along with our band, strings, and vocal octets. Anderson W. (Class of 2024) represented ISKL in the composition category, and the adjudicators received his work well. Congratulations to Mei Y. (’24)for participating as a delegate for the past four years. It was a truly inspirational weekend for all involved!

We met with the three divisions, Band, Choir, and Strings, to hear about their best moments, what they are most proud of, and advice to future delegates!

Here is their story:



(Words by Jihan C. (‘25))

Describe your most memorable moments as a team during the IASAS tournament.

The most memorable moments as a team at the Cultural Convention in IASAS were the mass band rehearsals and the results of a Festival Concert. Playing with the best musicians from six different IASAS schools and playing challenging wind ensemble pieces was exceptional. Mr. Ignatius Wang, the guest conductor, was humorous but also gave descriptive comments to enhance the performance. At the Festival Concert, facing the audience as a committed group of musicians was a special and fantastic experience.

As a team, what were you most proud of?

This year, memorizing the piece to focus on the musicality and more than playing the right notes was a challenge for all of us. Eye contact, synchronized movements, and breathing were some processes we went through. Numerous rehearsals bonded us to get to know and support each other.

Ultimately, we were not only a group of musicians but also played successfully as a united ensemble. Our team was proud of the adjudications and performances in front of all the IASAS teams.

What advice would you give to other students who wish to participate in the IASAS Culcon Band next academic year?

My second year in the IASAS Band was full of joyful moments and amazing performances by us and other teams. Even though it was the same event, it was a totally different experience with many students around Southeast Asia with great talents and efforts.

Being committed to an extracurricular activity that represents our school is challenging. Still, it is a rewarding and wonderful experience and opportunity that isn’t common in any high school or even life after high school. If you enjoy playing a wind, brass, or percussion instrument and are willing to share your talents, the IASAS Band will be a great experience for you!


(Words by Ferran K . (‘24))

Describe your most memorable moments as a team during the IASAS tournament.

Our most memorable experiences were bonding with each other and the other schools. You have to be really comfortable with one another in order to sing well together. Our octet formed those relationships by singing together, making jokes, lifting each other up and helping each other be their best self in and out of practice.

The mass choir is really cool as you suddenly find all these people who have also put several hours in over the past few months, and share similar experiences. During Culcon we bonded with the other schools between and during group rehearsals, exchanging affirmations and banter when we had a moment to speak. These moments are irreplaceable and represent the privilege of attending an international school and the interscholastic experience. We learn about each other’s cultures and struggles which creates the opportunity for strong friendships to be made. When you are surrounded by other hard-working individuals with a common goal, great things can happen and you find yourself achieving more than you could on your own.

As a team, what were you most proud of?

As a team, we were most proud of our octet adjudications. We had been singing our pieces for months, pushing through days of tired voices and extra sessions. After recitals and before leaving for Culcon, we had gotten the pieces to their strongest. However, it was becoming tiring to maintain the quality we established. Having practically exhausted these pieces, it would be so unfortunate to sing at a decent level but knowing we could do way better. Wasted potential is a deeply painful feeling. Ultimately, we decided to trust the process. When we finally went up and started singing during the adjudications, we immediately struck the level of relaxation that we were striving for, and everything flowed naturally. I strongly believe we peaked at the right time and our blend and ensemble singing were at their strongest when they needed to be. We were very much a group; a whole unit rather than eight individual singers. Our stylistic ideas came off really well and were received positively. It felt good to finally be done with these songs and give them their due diligence.

What advice would you give to other students who wish to participate in the IASAS Culcon Choir next academic year?

I would advise them to be bold and have no regrets. Take every opportunity by the reins. Participating in an honor choir should not be overlooked, and is one of the greatest experiences you can get out of this school. I started choir in Grade 6 and I couldn’t sing to save my life. I am so glad I stuck to it despite wanting to quit several times. You can’t see the final product when you are working on it, but you must continue to believe in it and build confidence through hard work. It is one of the most rewarding things you can do in any discipline. It doesn’t matter what other people think. Not everyone will understand it but that’s okay, that’s part of being a creative. Choir is so cool. All the extra hours, preparation, and stress will be worth it. Singing is one of the most vulnerable forms of expression, and music is universal. We are all performers and life is the biggest stage of them all.


(Words by Greg T. (‘24) )

Describe your most memorable moments as a team during the IASAS tournament.

One of the most memorable moments was the night of our final performance. After months of hard work and preparation, every note we played resonated with our collective effort and passion. The camaraderie we felt, cheering each other on, and the overwhelming support from the audience filled us with a sense of unity and accomplishment.

Another unforgettable moment was the large orchestra pieces where we collaborated with students from other schools, blending our sounds.

As a team, what were you most proud of?

As a team, we were most proud of the growth we experienced, individually and collectively. From the first rehearsal to the final performance, we witnessed a remarkable improvement in our skills and teamwork. The ability to come together, support one another, and create beautiful music, despite the nerves and pressure, was a source of immense pride. We were also proud of our professionalism and resilience, representing ISKL with dignity and grace under the spotlight of IASAS.

What advice would you give to other students who wish to participate in IASAS Culcon Strings next academic year?

To students aspiring to participate in the IASAS Culcon Strings, my advice is to practice consistently and with intention and focus on technical proficiency and emotional expression in your music. Participating in such an event is not just about showcasing your individual talent but also about how well you collaborate and contribute to the ensemble’s overall performance. Be open to learning from others, including peers and instructors, and take every opportunity to perform in front of an audience to build confidence. Lastly, remember to savor the experience, as it is a unique opportunity to connect with fellow musicians from different backgrounds and cultures.


Do you know of any student, teacher, parent, or staff who always have an anecdote to tell, love to share some insights into their passions and interest, or simply is a Panther through and through? Nominate them to be featured in our Panthers of ISKL stories by sending in your submissions here.

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