ALUMNI MAKING MOVES
Eric's passion for capturing life's interesting moments from behind a camera lens would eventually lead him to a career in film making and film restoration.
Eric Mache '68, a member of the first graduating class at HKIS, graduated high school twice. He came to HKIS for grade 12, having already graduated from King George V (KGV), where he had been a student in the British system since moving to Hong Kong in 1960. This, combined with the fact that he was a young 17, meant that his parents wanted him to experience a bit of “American life” before heading back to the States for university, and enrolled him at HKIS.
The Mache kids from left to right, Paul, Jacquelyn, Eric '68 and Robert '71.
Eric in his HKIS uniform during his senior year at HKIS in 1968.
Dottie Mache with her four children in Hong Kong in the 60's.
Eric found his 'new' school to be very American and the kids and school culture quite different from his experience in the British system. He didn’t really fit in and found the 'laid back California attitude' unfamiliar. But, having learned photography from his father at a young age, and winning a Kodak-sponsored photo contest in the mid-60s, he decided he could contribute to student life at HKIS by documenting the school year and his classmates' lives from behind the camera lens. Little did he know this 'documenting' for the Orientale yearbook would eventually lead him to his eventual career path in filmmaking.
The impulse to chronicle is strong in Eric. He is a film editor, documentarian, actor, art director and long time illustrator having illustrated several books including “Rajac” which was printed in 7 different countries. Eric is based in New York and enjoys photography, music and art. In his professional life, he has restored films from the 1950s, mostly spaghetti westerns. He has also produced, written, and directed a documentary about legendary New York agent, Archer King, currently in post-production. In his spare time, he remains dedicated to HKIS, and has generously scanned boxes of old photos, letters and documents of HKIS for the Advancement Office in hopes of preserving the history of HKIS; his parents were instrumental to founding HKIS. We are grateful for his commitment and support of the school.
Eric found his 'new' school to be very American and the kids and school culture quite different from his experience in the British system. He didn’t really fit in and found the 'laid back California attitude' unfamiliar.
with actor Martin Sheen during the filming of his documentary 'Lunch with Archer King'.
Eric has returned to HKIS through the years attending the 25th and 40th anniversary celebrations and again in 2018 and was bowled over by the changes and said the school has come a long, long way since 1968 and that he couldn’t be happier. He said, “I could almost feel my parents smiling down.” And thanks to social media and the alumni FB group he has connected and forged friendships with his classmates over the years and will attend their upcoming reunion in 2022.
with Ron Howard and his co-director and producer, Sophia Robbins, during the filming of his documentary currently in post-production.
The Next 55 Years
Over the five decades of the school’s history, the leaders who influenced the direction of the school had one thing in common: Maintain the integrity of the mission by being distinctly American and distinctly Christian to an international community of all faiths. Despite the ever-changing landscape of Hong Kong, HKIS remains a thriving educational community boasting over 2,800 students across four buildings on two campuses.
After the opening of the first campus in 1967, a second construction project began next to the existing building by drilling through a massive rockface. This was to be the new elementary school, which opened in September 1975 allowing for further expansion of the school.
Over a decade later in 1988, a brand new High School was built in the Red Hill area of Tai Tam, purpose-built for older students with facilities for sports, the arts, computing, and student services (counseling and library services). With the pressure of a growing demand for elementary international school spots in the early 1990’s, HKIS worked with the government to further expand their Tai Tam campus to include a dedicated Middle School on a piece of land adjacent to the High School. This allowed for grades 3-5 to move back to the original building (now the Upper Primary) and expand the capacity of the elementary school (now the Lower Primary) to accept more students for early education.
The new Tai Tam campus
constructed in the late 1980's and the most recent renovation in the Middle School in summer 2021.
In 2006, a new Master Facilities Plan was developed, which included a redevelopment of the Lower Primary building, renovation of the Upper Primary, a Student Activity Center adjacent to the Middle School, and a makeover of the High School to include a state-of-the-art Performance Arts Center.
Over ten years later, the Repulse Bay phase is complete! Our youngest students enjoy a
bespoke learning facility
custom-built for play for the 4-8 year old. Our Upper Primary students learn and grow in a
that boasts spacious, flexible classrooms for inquiry-based learning.
As we move our focus to Tai Tam, the
Power of Place
has become our guiding light when it comes to learning from our environment. More than ever, our development projects must support the school’s world-class programming, designed to inspire students to have inquiring minds, compassionate hearts, and a passion for service to the community and to Hong Kong.
Upper Primary School
The original HKIS building in 1967 and the most recent renovation in 2018.
Did You Know?
The new High School campus wasn’t ready in time for the start of school, so the new students shared the then Middle School in Repulse Bay. Middle School students went to school on Monday, Wednesday, and Friday, and High School students went to school on Tuesday, Thursday, and Saturday.
New Elementary School
built in 1975 across the street from the original building.
Fun Facts: Other HKIS Spots!
The very first HKIS classes were held in a government-leased residential building in Chung Hom Kok in 1966 before the opening of the first permanent building.
Before the opening of the Middle School, HKIS responded to the chronic shortage of Elementary School places in Hong Kong in the early 1990’s by opening an Early Childhood Center on Kennedy Road in the Mid-Levels.