The to-be leaders of the PAS rock band faced off in an exclusive audition in the principal’s office, both combating nervousness and Ms. Pamela Chu’s admittedly trenchant remarks.

Though George Wu (12), performing “Like You” by Kit Chan, projected more of his voice as he got more into the chorus, Ms. Pamela commented, “Were you singing a lullaby?” Still, the audience applauded his guitar work and lamented that the song he picked was tamer than what Ms. Pamela would like.

Howard Fan (12), who performed “Can’t Take My Eyes Off You” by Frankie Valli, was also more confident about his instrumental skills as opposed to his vocals. “I’m so nervous,” Fan remarked before his round, “I’m not a singer, I’m just the guitarist.” Ms. Pamela advised that Fan sing something more suited for his deeper vocal range.

Though the audition was brief and only open to less than ten teachers and students, it brought about serious conversation about the future of the school rock band and school culture.

Ms. Pamela expressed her wish that the rock band perform more rock songs rather than the pop songs that the school has enjoyed for the past few years. She has seen the band induce concert-levels of excitement in the students, which she prefers to slow-paced hand waving. Fan and Wu revealed that they and past rock band leaders had also been looking for such vocalists, but lamented that “the ones who can hype people up can’t sing well,” and vice versa. “There are people who can sing, but they are too afraid to present themselves,” echoed almost everyone in the room.

With Messrs. Zack Yu and Frank Wu bringing up the vacant recording room, Fan and Wu concurred that music enthusiasts next year do not have to perform in front of a crowd, but can record themselves alone in the recording room while the band leaders select the best entries. Ms. Pamela noddingly approved of their idea, saying that this solution can foster the spirit of fighting for your own promotions and admissions, and can lead a long way in school, college applications, and life.

Ms. Pamela encourages students to try out the recording room and strive for their own excellence in intramural activities like rock band, STUCO, and other clubs, as well as events outside school such as online classes, international forums, and starting one’s own business.

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