Thursday, July 12, 2012

Jean-Baptist; The Lost Chronicle

So I made a trip back to Ipoh over the weekend to catch my alma mater St. Michael annual theater play.
Aside from the nostalgic building, the undying Michaelian spirit and good command of English as some claim, St. Michael has a long unique tradition of school drama played by its students since 1954 – yes, older than our independence. 

Since I love my school so much, so I will go easy with this entry and wont judge much.
The play for 2012 is Jean-Baptist; The Lost Chronicle to coincide with the centennial celebration of St Michael. This year Timothy Chee and his son Ian join forces to produce the colourful, dramatic, historical and entertaining drama to depict the struggles and sacrifices made by Jean (little bit of Lady Gaga and LMFAO to bring 18th century of France into current pop culture).

18th Century France, a country bold and flamboyant, a jewel in the West ruled by the Sun King, Louis the 14th. It is a time of decadence and opulent grandeur. It is also the time when the common man suffers under the aristocratic rule of French court. Corruption and vices abound and everyone in the Court of the Sun King is embroiled in political machinations. The common man is neglected, overworked and underpaid. His children have absolutely no hope for the future for the education is only reserved for the rich and powerful;. These are indeed dark times to be born without noble heritage.

Into this world of stark contrast reveals a young man, a priest who is compelled by a higher power to do all he can to help the poor and the needy. This man is Jean-Baptiste de La Salle. Himself born of noble heritage, he is nonetheless driven early on by the Voices in his heart to fight for the underprivileged, by offering them free education. He is aided by willing hands volunteers. 

One of the scene during the play - courtesy from Peter Khiew's blog
But his revolutionary work arouses the ire of those who seek domination over the poor and the helpless, as powerful nobles begin to plot his destruction and that of his fledging school. With money, power and dangerous intent at their disposal, they will stop at nothing to undo Jean-Baptiste’s efforts. But will they succeed? Who would helped Jean-Baptiste sow the seeds of what is to be come one of the most powerful educational movements in the history of Man?

Okay, here comes the bitchy part of me. Most of the time, I had no idea what was going on and my friend I were having hard time in guessing who’s who. And we barely could listen to the act as some of the audience were really noisy.

Nevertheless, it was a meaningful night for me not only because I got the chance to return to my school but I also managed to sing the school rally after so many years. Sons of St Michael valiant and true!

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