QAIS students Transfomed by ISTA | ISTA让QAIS学生实现蜕变
For four days, thirteen QAIS students and embarked on a challenging, exciting and rewarding experience at the International Schools Theater Association (ISTA) Middle School Festival held in South Korea. Led by Lauren Borodenko and Chris McCarthy, this was QAIS’ second trip to an MS ISTA festival. ISTA has been leading drama workshops for over 40 years around the world. Like QAIS, ISTA “believes that the future of our world depends on confident, internationally minded, collaborative and culturally literate young people who are empowered to engage with and change the world responsibly.” The goals of their inspiring mission were on full display at Taejon Christian International School (TCIS), who hosted eight international schools from three countries, bringing 140 students together to work with seven outstanding theater educators under the inspirational leadership of ex London cop, West End and Broadway actor and current Shanghai American School teacher Stephen Finegold. Each ISTA festival starts with a theme, in this case, Transformations, with these ideas as its starting point: What are the forces that make us transform from one thing to another? As third culture students we are often in frequent states of transition but how do these transformations differ from those experienced by other young people? Transformation can be instigated internally but also thrust upon us externally. It can be gradual or happen in an instant, be resisted and unwanted even. Transformation can be wished for and then not happen. What are the forces of transformation and how do we manage them in a rapidly evolving world? How do we survive them? Students are grouped into seven ensembles led by one of the artists in residence, working with a mix of students from the eight participating schools.
在韩国举行的国际学校戏剧协会（ISTA）中学艺术节上，有13名QAIS学生参加了为期四天的令人激动人心的旅程。这是一次具有挑战性的活动，并且让学生们受益匪浅。由Lauren Borodenko和Chris McCarthy带队，这是QAIS第二次参加ISTA音乐节。ISTA在世界各地举办戏剧工作坊已经有四十多年了。像QAIS一样，ISTA相信：我们世界的未来取决于自信的、有国际情怀的、有合作精神的、有文化素养的年轻人，他们有能力去参与并改变世界。本次活动由大田市基督教国际学校(TCIS)主办，主要成员来自三个国家的八所国际学校，TCIS向到场的学生全面展示了鼓舞人心的ISTA使命，并带领140名学生，在Stephen Finegold老师鼓舞人心的领导下与七位杰出的戏剧教育者一起学习。Stephen Finegold 以前是伦敦西区警察，曾担任百老汇演员，目前在上海担任美国学校外籍教师。每个ISTA节日都是以一个主题开始的，伴随以下想法我们展开本次主题，蜕变。是什么力量使我们革新除旧？作为第三文化的学生我们经常处于各种文化状态的转变中，但是这些蜕变和其他年轻人的经历有什么不同？蜕变可以在内部进行，也可以从外部强加给我们。它可以是渐进的，也可以是瞬间发生的，甚至是被抵制的，不需要的。蜕变是被期待的，而不是偶然发生的。什么是蜕变的力量？我们如何在一个快速发展的时代中掌控好它？我们如何使这种蜕变的精神传承？学生们分成七组，由一名艺术家带领，与八所参与学校的学生一起讨论。
On the first day, we all visited the National Science Museum, a venue yeasty with ideas, objects and lessons about the scientific and technological transformations that have driven so much change in the 21st century. Students returned that afternoon to TCIS to begin work in their ensembles, building relationships and skills while working towards a final dramatic performance that would bring to dramatic life their ideas on transformations. Each day students engaged both in ensembles and in workshops, developing their performance skills. Throughout the sessions, I was struck with how much physical work goes into the performing arts. From the rigorous intricacies of K-Pop dance choreography to the strength, flexibility and collaboration of Acro-Yoga, students minds and bodies were put to the test. Students workshopped on how to build characters using the techniques of Laban, collaborated on short skits to develop the ideas they returned with from the Science Museum, and constantly collaborated, critiqued and refined their performances. On Saturday afternoon, the seven ensembles took the stage, each given only four minutes to bring their work to a live audience. The results were a testament to how all the students had been transformed by the experience. I was struck by the discipline and seriousness of purpose of our students and their peers, but most of all—the originality and creativity of their visions. Each ensemble had found their own voice, their own strength as a group—and each QAIS student—and teacher– had been transformed by the experience.