by Tan Tze Heng
In February, we boosted our ‘RHuat’ from the block and hall events during the Chinese New Year season, and enjoyed our Valentine moments with our partner (romantic or not). As this February came to a close, we saw March approaching, bringing us recess week and yet another round of mid-terms, and we can see RHesidents mugging and studying for the grades.
Despite the mid-terms, however, Raffles Hall is in no way less dull but remains filled with exciting events. Some of the major ones even went beyond the hall, promoting our RH culture to the general public!
Let’s take a look at some of the hall events held this March!
‘Come join Raffles!’
NUS Open Day – Raffles Hall Booth
5 March 2022
‘Which hall is the best hall? What, you say Raffles Hall? What is Raffles Hall? Why Raffles Hall?’
People interested in Halls of NUS (HONUS) in general, especially prospective students wanting to stay in a hall, may raise such questions, whether in mind or out loud. To the Hall Promotion Board (HPB) of Raffles Hall, what will be a better opportunity worth seizing than addressing them via NUS Open Day, one of the largest campus-wide event in NUS that can bring a populous number of visitors?
Even before the big day on 5th March when the HPB team set up booths along with other halls and houses to spread the fun of RH culture and activities to the visitors of the NUS Open Day, the HPB team had made a commendable amount of effort in publicity via different media, including Instagram, Telegram channel, Tellonym Q&A platform and so on. The HPB team had also collaborated with other media CCA groups to produce a video for upload to YouTube to present to the others what a day as a RHesident would be like! Thanks to these efforts, future freshmen could have a clearer image of the Raffles Hall culture.
And then it’s the highly anticipated big day: the NUS Open Day itself, when the HPB crew set up the RH CCA booths at the University Town to share the Raffles Hall spirit to the public and particularly future RHesidents among them. And wow, the booth was truly eye-catching! Not only the visitors were greeted by huge RH flags waving away before reaching the booth, the booth itself had also a variety of attractive set-ups, including a huge RH phoenix emblem with a prominent ‘RAFFLES’ exhibition surrounded by lights, photos and RH merchandises, as well as series of photo galleries connected with strings.
The exhibition team stationed at the booth greeted approaching visitors hospitably and enthusiastically, while showing them the brochure and photo album painstakingly designed by the crew for the event, as well as answering various questions asked by the visitors. What were the CCAs available in Raffles Hall? Were there double rooms in Raffles Hall? When was the hall application deadline? The team explained them to the visitors in a clear and informative manner.
Our fellow JCRC members and Mr. Leong, our hall manager, also came to show support to the hard-working HPB crew working at the booth.
After hours of continuous pitching, The NUS Open Day then concluded with visitors going home with welfare packs prepared by the team. Hearsay some of the lucky ones even got a full-size umbrella and an exclusive RH singlet, wonder if you were the one?
Travelling around the world… with music...
Combined Hall Ensemble Concert (CHEC)
9 March 2022
Even though the pandemic is currently easing and the world is gradually opening up its doors, freely travelling anywhere around the world without worry is still not an option.
Why not then travelling around the world with just our senses, through music? No worries, this year’s greatly anticipated Combined Hall Ensemble Concert (CHEC) got the audience covered! Organised by Raffles Hall and jointly performed by the ensemble CCAs of Halls of NUS (HONUS) including RHebels, this year’s CHEC was themed ‘Around the World’, featuring various wonderful arrangements of music categorised by different countries.
After two years of COVID restriction, the ensembles, especially the RHebels with a larger member group, were finally able to perform live for the physical audience. Also, the crew and performers were also privileged to perform in the University Cultural Centre (UCC), which is a larger performance venue that many dream to perform at.
This year’s CHEC was separated into two shows, with the first one featuring ensembles from the other HONUS including Eusoff, Sheares, King Edward VII and Kent Ridge Halls, and the second one that came after featuring the RHebels ensemble. Popular tunes featuring Spain, Brazil, the United States and South Korea were played in the first show, some of which include a medley of Korean pop songs performed by King Edward VII Hall and ‘Spain’, the classic jazz fusion standard jammed away by Sheares Hall. As for the second show, music featuring China, Japan and France were performed, including game soundtracks from Genshin Impact and Yakuza, as well as movie soundtracks from Mulan, Your Name and Ratatouille. For the Genshin, Mulan and Your Name medley, RHebels boasted a large ensemble size by featuring an orchestral setting with a hybrid instrumentation of Chinese and Western instruments.
The audiences of these two shows had a wonderful sound experience that guided them travelling through these different nations around the world and experiencing the various cultural scenes as depicted by these musics of different genres, ranging from pop, soundtrack to jazz, by their minds. The show was indeed successful and the audiences of both shows enjoyed the music very much. After the second show, a photobooth was set up outside Bar Bar Black Sheep for the audiences, performers and crews to capture the wonderful memories of this concert.
One fun fact: I was one of the RHebels performers; I was the drum set player. It was truly a mesmerising experience for being able to perform on such a big stage, but it certainly did not come without a cost of efforts and challenges behind the scenes. At one point, I was struggling to meet the standards of the performance, but thanks to the support by my fellow teammates and also seniors, I managed to at least present a satisfactory performance to the audience. Thanks y’all, I really appreciated your help.
To those who watched the concert physically or online via livestream, hope that you enjoyed the shows!
Your vote matters.
64th JCRC Election Forum
10 March 2022
It’s the annual JCRC election again! This year we are once again witnessing a new batch of talented candidates who are brave enough to nominate themselves for taking up a role in the JCRC – the bridge between RHesidents and SCRC striving for the good of RHesidents and Raffles Hall in general. For this year’s JCRC election, all positions were either single-candidate or a two-way competition.
I guess most RHesidents had already read the candidates’ pitches written on the nomination forms shown in the Communal Hall, but perhaps there would still be some who wanted to understand more about them than what was written on the forms.
In order to cater for such RHesidents’ and also the SCRC’s needs to know more and better about this year’s candidates, the 64th JCRC Forum was held at the Communal Hall with a limited number of physical audience plus many others joining online via Zoom, so that this year’s candidates were given a platform to sound their visions and insights regarding how to make Raffles Hall a greater place, and convince the RHesidents to vote for them.
In the forum, we could see that all the candidates had to face a lot of burning questions blasting towards them. However, each of the candidates did not disappoint everyone and managed to articulate their answers in a thoughtful and intriguing manner. In fact, the questions asked as well as the responses given were so much that the forum had to be extended for nearly two hours, with the forum resuming via Zoom near the end.
After the forum concluded, fellow RHesidents (including myself) were given a day’s time to think through their decisions and then cast their deciding votes on Saturday. After the votes were counted, the election results were then released on the following day. Here are the results:
Congratulations to the successful elects, and please do take this opportunity to achieve for a greater good for Raffles Hall!
And the OscaRHs goes to...
Dinner and Dance
11 March 2022
Having a bunch of fancy attires in your wardrobe but not having a good chance to wear and showcase them in a social event? Fancy of a nice social dinner in university? This year’s Dinner and Dance is yet another good opportunity to fulfil these wishes!
Themed ‘The OscaRHs’, this year’s Dinner and Dance is in no way less exciting despite prevailing COVID-19 safe management measures which lead to a limited capacity of participants in physical venues. During the event, we could see groups of chio guys and girls dressing up their own most appealing attires while enjoying the exquisite cuisines served on their tables and watching a series of performances presented by RHockerfellas, RH Unplugged and RHythm.
Near the end of the event, a lucky draw session was also held. All of the participants enjoyed every moment of the event very much, being able to experience a fancy hall dine-in.
Ultimate cultural showdown!
17 March 2022
How can we Rafflesians call ourselves the ‘hall of culture’ if we don’t have the ‘grand show’ where all cultural CCAs perform together on one stage?!
That’s right! This year’s RHazzmatazz is yet another amazing show made possible by the Culture Committee and of course the cultural CCAs performing at the show, not only to mark a good end of this academic year, but also to showcase what a ‘hall of culture’ looks like. Due to the COVID restrictions (again), this show was carried out in hybrid form, i.e. a limited number of RHesidents watched the YouTube livestream of the show together at the Kuok Conference Room, while others watched the show through their own devices separately.
While at Comm Hall, we could see RHythm the a capella group kicking off the show by presenting us three a capella songs, right after an opening video. After their performances, they were then followed by acoustic band performances by RH Unplugged, ensemble performances by RHebels, vocal performances by RH Voices, dance performances by RHDvnce and finally rock band performances by RHockerfellas. In between the show, there was also a Kahoot quiz in which participants had to guess who among the cultural CCA heads they were exactly, vibing and dancing with their faces covered.
Before, at the start and also after the end of the show, food welfare giveaways were also held for RHesidents to support their efforts in making the show successful.
It was indeed a satisfying show to be able to watch so many types of cultural performances, both musical and visual., at once. You really could not easily find similar shows like this elsewhere!
Photo Credits: Keith Chua Chang Yi
PLAY LOUD, ROCK HARD!!!
25 March 2022
It’s already the end of Week 10 and finals are approaching; assignments do not stop looming over us either. Then…
Why not take a moment to unwind and RHock away with the once-in-a-year RHockfest?!
Even though we still could not welcome a crowd of live audience to rock together with RH’s talented rock band - the RHockerfellas at the Communal Hall unlike previous years due to COVID and had to make do with livestreaming, the performances brought by the talented musicians were in no way less exciting.
In this year’s RHockfest, the RHockerfellas brought to us five different styles of rock music, from delightful pop rock songs, driving hard rock songs, groovy surf rock tunes, catchy funk rock singles to anime theme songs.
Among the songs performed, the songs that may be worth mentioning would be the two non-English songs: ‘Troubled By the Moon’ which is in Mandarin and ‘Silhouette’ which is in Japanese, both of which stand out among the entire show.
Even when watching from my laptop screen, I still could not help but vibing or even head-banging along with the beat of the songs. To add on, the choice of songs performed in RHockfest are also quite apt, I am adding the songs into my Spotify playlist…
AND this wraps up this month’s RHecap, which is also the last one in this academic year! Phew, there have been a lot of hall events held in this month, all of which are exciting and fun in their own ways! In this academic year, Raffles Hall has once again showed its vibrancy through lots of fun events, and we would expect this RH spirit will continue in future AYs!