We had a late start today as we attended the annual KYUEM Bangsawan competition last night. Bangsawan is a form of traditional Malay theatre developed through various stages from the Indian-Persian theatre that was brought to Penang by visiting troupes from India during the final quarter of the 19th century. Here at KYUEM, Bangsawan is an annual competition between the houses; Topaz, Diamond, Garnet and Sapphire. We were amazed by the beautiful stage settings, the inspirational acting and the contagious enthusiasm of the KYUEM students. It was a privilege to be a part of such an important evening here at KYUEM.
We were delighted to start the day with a lecture from Dr Paul Rogers (Head Teacher at KYUEM). We were fascinated to hear about the history of the English Language and how it has been shaped by different periods in history and influences within our culture. Niamh said, ‘I didn’t expect to learn so much about my own language while in Malaysia!’
After lunch we really enjoyed our Malay language lesson with Miss Zura. We learned to say some useful phrases such as, ‘Apa nama anda?’ (What is your name?) and, ‘Nama saya …’ (My name is…). We are looking forward to practising our language skills while here in Malaysia and are grateful to Miss Zura for teaching us.
We were invited to the annual Christmas party this evening and were treated to another evening of excellent entertainment. The KYUEM students had written a play which they performed and they prepared a wonderful buffet; we all felt very festive by the end of the evening. Charlotte, Niamh and James were very brave when called to the stage and they taught over 200 guests an Irish jig – this went down very well with the appreciative audience.