With the start of the Cultural Convention at ISKL, comes the conversation – do we value sports over the arts? There has been talk of the arts not getting the same hype. So we at the TAKE looked into it.
Mr. Hutterd, a high school PE teacher, feels that Cultural Convention does have recognition but with sports being outdoors, with a lot of noise and atmosphere, it generates its own hype. “Cultural convention is in closed spaces, the audience can’t just come along whenever they want. You need to know when things are going on.” He says.
This may be true, but there are students who feel that the performances and displays in cultural convention aren’t advertised the same as IASAS sports. “You have so many students talking about sports IASAS and not so much on cultural convention,” Tara ‘19 said. Another student, AK ‘18 thinks that “sports IASAS is given more priority than cultural IASAS.”
However, CulCon, according to drama teacher Mr. Howe, cannot be compared with the sports IASAS.
“Every kind of activity has it’s own energy and it’s own thing. To put all these kind of events in the same category would be wrong in of itself.”
Unlike the competitive nature of sports, which brings a higher level of energy to the campus, CulCon has a different aspect to it, one that involves more subjectivity. It requires an individual to draw inspiration from within and to use that to fully understand and appreciate it.
“I think there’s less understanding about it because people understand scores and winning,” the dance teacher, Ms. Palko, said.
“I’m not sure if people have the understanding to judge a piece of art. It’s an aesthetic art form. When you watch a good piece of art, there’s no best art or worst art. Each piece of art moves you in a different way.”
“I think the school needs both,” Mr. Ruiz, a French teacher said. “We need the sports and we need the arts. But they are two separate things. I think some students are not exposed enough to the arts. It’s crucial to allow the students to experience this. So having it here is a great opportunity for the ISKL students to truly appreciate not just ISKL work, but the other schools’ work as well.”
In the end, CulCon is more than just a drama performance, a piece of artwork or a dance routine. It in fact has a much deeper meaning to it, one that delves into the heart of communal belonging, shared experiences, and the ISKL spirit.
“Our job as performers and creators – art, dance, drama, tech – is to give audiences valuable experiences,” Mr. Howe stated. “What we’re hoping is, maybe when you go to a sports game you’re revved up to win and here we’re revved up to send our messages. It’s our responsibility too to build those bridges to help kids, help adults, help anyone that haven’t experienced these art forms before to give them the vocabulary and ability to ask those questions.”
By recognizing that due to its own intrinsic nature, there are differences in terms of how students approach CulCon and the attention it gets. It can be understood that both the sports and the arts are equally as important, and don’t hold more worth than the other.