By Orientation Committee 2016
Additional reporting by Choo Shuen Ming (16A01E), Daphne Tang (16S03M), Karen Cuison (16A01D), Louisa Li (16A13A) and Olivia Tan (16A01E)
Part 1 of our behind the scenes coverage can be found here.
As for the talented Song committee, finding inspiration for both melodies and lyrics alike was a “massive challenge for (them) as a team”.
The clear musical prowess of the Song committee was one thing – but conveying a year’s worth of Rafflesian wisdom was quite another. Denise Ong (16S07B) mused that their abilities to poetically convey their well-wishes to the juniors was thoroughly tested. While they initially went with the idea of ‘blooming’ to go with the orientation theme of Fiore, it quickly became apparent that they wanted to say even more with the batch song. In that process of writing, they shared that interestingly, their own batch song proved quite helpful, as they learnt how to write meaningful lyrics through reviewing their seniors’ lyrics. Ultimately, composing proved to be a long and tedious process for them, with it taking regular meetings twice or thrice a week over the course of more than a month to finalise the batch song.
With composing out of the way, practice and filming still remained. Creating the music video was certainly not without its challenges. The original concept for the Song 2016 video involved a one-shot film, with physical lyrics stuck around school. However, the idea was canned due to time constraints. (Juniors, take note and start early!) Nonetheless, the video turned out great – check it out above!
Choreographing and practicing the dances was exhausting, and many late evenings spent rehearsing did not make things easier. What the dancers will present and have presented during Orientation represents the culmination of their sweat, tears and time. All they hope is that everything they’ve put in will pay off during Orientation, and that the J1s have fun busting their moves!
Alongside the batch dance, Dance was also in charge of teaching their fellow OGLs the famous Sundance, which they did in a dry run session late last December. The Dance members capably and clearly took their fellow OGLs through the steps, making it enjoyable and easy to follow, and the OGLs had a blast as you can see below:
When asked about the inspiration for the MV, Grace Lee (16A01E) revealed that, “actually we didn’t really get ideas from anywhere! We just brainstormed for aesthetic locations that suited the mood of the song. Everyone had a say but when we actually filmed Allan (below, in black) mostly decided because he had a vision of the video,” which turned out amazing either way because Dance definitely showed off some breaking moves. Check out the blooper reel below!
The Programme & Logistics comm – PLogs for short – “[plans] nothing and everything” as IC Qiu Jiayu (16S06A) puts it. They’re not directly in charge of specific programme segments like other comms, but they’re the ones settling all the admin, logistics and finances, always there fielding the important support that keeps Orientation running smoothly. PLogs also had a hand in selecting and designing some of the items in the O’Pack and of course, coordinating the packing itself. Some of PLogs’ duties may sound insignificant – attendance-taking, food distribution and disposal – but when you realise that they cater to the immense combined size of the entire J1 batch and the OGLs, one begins to appreciate just how much work PLogs does. “Ensuring that all our spending and logistics requests are approved, chasing people for receipts, updating the attendance of everyone involved in Orientation” and trying to stay on top of all that admin was “incredibly overwhelming at times”, and probably the toughest part for PLogs Jiayu shared.
In spite of all the work they do, PLogs remains quite invisible for the most part. If everything’s going smoothly – forms submitted, attendance all accounted for, food ready and waiting at mealtimes – you wouldn’t know PLogs was there. It’s only when something goes wrong that you call. With PLogs work not being the most interesting, and the fruits of admin being rather intangible, sometimes having this low profile makes the slog even harder. While it’s relatively easy to miss out PLogs, Jiayu reflected that perhaps “that was what made it meaningful too – understanding that what (they) did was crucial to the running of the entire Orientation, even though people might not always see it.”
What’s so fun about being in Highlights? Ryan Chua (16A01A) couldn’t help but agree that “the most fun part about being in highlights was seeing everything come together, after meticulous planning and rehearsals with the other OGLs and Comms!”, while watching the blossoming of Fiore shared with their beloved juniors. Ryan also added that “being put in charge of organizing the major events of orientation (such as the grand opening ceremony, O’Nite and OG hours) was a daunting task”. However it’s certainly has been “very satisfactory” to see the smiles on the faces of J1s and know that “all of their hard work had paid off.” As the sub comm in charge of major events, it is heartwarming to see that it was not about the ‘rewarding’ results that made them proud of their work, but the simple enjoyment of sharing the Rafflesian spirit with the new batch – by coming together as one in OG hours and O’Nite.