Liana Corpuz

Drum Major
CHIJ Secondary Concert Band

The announcement ‘We got a distinction’ was music to our ears. Some of us burst into tears of joy, while others celebrated by hugging one another and screaming in excitement.

Our journey to the SYF Arts Presentation was a long one. When we first received the scores for our choice piece, ‘With Heart and Voice’ by David Gillingham, we felt extremely daunted. We couldn’t even imagine ourselves performing it in just a few months! Thus we started off on a low note, discouraged and somewhat lost without our seniors around to guide us.

It was especially tough for my section, percussion, as the piece featured many technically demanding percussion solos. We spent several long hours a week, studying our parts and constantly practicing them. There were times when we felt like giving up, because it felt like we were working so hard, yet there was little to no improvement in our playing. However, after months of blood, sweat, and even tears, I am heartened to say that all our efforts have paid off, and that we have definitely performed to the best of our abilities.

In the months leading up to the SYF, all of us have strived to improve ourselves as individual players and as a band. We definitely could not have come this far without the guidance and support of our conductors, Mr Adrian Chiang and Mr Terrence Wong. We have learnt many invaluable lessons from them, such as to never give up, and as Mr Chiang would say,

“Practice not till you get it right, but till you can’t get it wrong.”

No matter how tired we were, there was never a dull moment during our practices with them. We are forever grateful for the simple joys that they have brought, with the entertaining stories and jokes that never fail to bring smiles to our faces.

Being a part of the band doesn’t only mean persevering through the difficult times; it is also means forging friendships, sharing laughter, and making memories. My experience in the band definitely wouldn’t have been the same with the family that I’ve found, and I wouldn’t trade it for anything in the world.

Although all good things must come to an end, and as the Secondary 4 band members step down to prepare for the national exams, I’m glad that we ended our journey on a high note. I believe that being in the band has been instrumental in shaping us to be better musicians and better versions of ourselves.