On April 6th, 2018, the first ever Mr. KIS event took place at Korea International School (KIS). Mr. KIS is a male talent competition featuring 12 male seniors who represented the diverse departments of sports, music, forensics, and theatre throughout their years in KIS. The Mr. KIS event was KIS Student Council’s attempt to bring a fun change to the list of annual events, which have been carried on unchanged for many years.
“Firsts” are always a gamble. To break tradition and invent a completely new idea is strenuous in itself, but to put it into action requires a whole different level of determination. It is always difficult to have a first-time event end up as a success, and without strong willpower and preparation, the whole attempt may simply end up as a failure. The process clearly required risking a great deal of stakes and taking on much skepticism from students and teachers, but those obstacles did not stop the Student Council from commencing Mr. KIS as the brand-new event of our year.
Mr. KIS was a fun, light-hearted event to present some of the most talented and well-known seniors in KIS in a memorable way. The idea started as a satire of the overdone beauty pageants that generally featured females and that were centered on the contestants’ physical looks as the focus of beauty. This event was to show how the idea of ‘beauty competitions’ could be butchered by having the contestants show off their knowledge, talent, and personalities instead.
The one and only Mr. KIS was determined by the scores given by the three teacher judges, as well as the audience votes. There are no exact “qualifications” to become Mr.KIS—the seniors just needed to put themselves out there and show who they are to get both the judges and audience to love them!
The contestants’ impressive yet hilarious dance to Wanna-One’s “나야나" opened the show and got the audience eagerly rooting for the Mr. KIS candidates. The show was broken down into three portions: The Style Walk, The Talent Show, and the Q&A. In the Style Walk, each contestant all distinctly showed off their unique character with their different concepts and different ways of entering with their escorts.
|[Contestant Danny Choi’s entrance, photo by KIS Student Council]
|[Contestant Matthew Kim’s entrance, photo by KIS Student Council]
|The Talent portion was definitely the highlight of the show. From Noah Kim’s phenomenal monologue performance to Alex Han’s beach ball ballet act collaboration with Mr. Bunting, the audience was either left in awe of the contestants' seriously talented skills, or cracking up with their original and hilarious acts.
|[Contestant Danny Kang’s performance of the Korean National Anthem , photo by KIS Student Council]
|[Contestant Alex Han’s beach ball ballet performance, photo by Student Council]
The final Q&A portion wrapped up the Mr. KIS event. Some questions were simple and light- hearted ones like: “What is your favorite subject in school?” that revealed a fun-fact about the contestant. Some were complex questions like: “What solution would you come up with for the issue of global warming?” that challenged candidates to share out deeper thoughts in their mind. The concluding portion of the event was a time for the audience to get to know the contestant better because the Q&A revealed parts of the contestants’ personality, their personal beliefs, and their deeper thoughts.
After the three main portions of the event, an online voting was opened for the students and teachers to vote for the first ever Mr. KIS. Despite the tight competition, Kristian Noll was crowned as the first ever Mr. KIS, with Matthew Kim in second, and Noah Kim in third place. It was a close call, but they all definitely deserved their rightful title.
But the fun of the event was far beyond the results— everyone, both the contestants and audience, had a great time with endless laughter filling the auditorium. It was like everyone had forgotten that it was a competition and simply enjoyed their time of a memorable Friday night.
It is clear that the success of this event directly reflects the painstaking planning process of Mr. KIS. Student Council says that this was one of the most challenging events they prepared for, and that it took a long time with a full agenda packed with various preparations leading up to Mr. KIS. But the hard work definitely paid off. The first Mr. KIS was definitely a big success for a first-time event. The whole show ran smoothly, all contestants were absolutely amazing with each part of the show, and both the audience and contestants had a great time. Despite the speculation surrounding this event, those who were there said that it was a great way to spend their Friday night and that those who didn’t come would have regretted not coming.
To be remembered as Mr. KIS is a memorable way to leave your mark at KIS and have another special memory made with the soon-leaving seniors. The success of this event brings high possibilities of this new event being carried on as a new tradition, and gradually becoming something people anticipate being a part of their senior year.
Korea International School
Sophie Yang firstname.lastname@example.org
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