The Founders Auditorium and 25 Years of Development at BIS HCMC - The Founders Auditorium and 25 Years of Development at BIS HCMC
Chantal Gamble
15 February, 2023

The Founders Auditorium and 25 Years of Development at BIS HCMC

The Founders Auditorium and 25 Years of Development at BIS HCMC - The Founders Auditorium and 25 Years of Development at BIS HCMC

Unveiling The Founders Auditorium 

This week we are immensely proud to unveil our newly refurbished auditorium, named after our Co-Founders Maurice Nguyen and Rosie Ngo. The Founders Auditorium was officially opened on Saturday 11th February at a ceremony prior to our 25th-anniversary garden party. In attendance, alongside Anthony Rowlands, our Principal, and our Senior Leadership Team, we welcomed the CEO of Nord Anglia Education, Andrew Fitzmaurice and the Managing Director of Southeast Asia, Middle East and India and our former Principal Mr Shaun Williams and other colleagues from Nord Anglia Education. We also welcomed Principals from BIS Hanoi, BVIS HCMC and BVIS Hanoi, Mr Richard Vaughan, Mr Simon Higham and Mr Paul Holyome, respectively.


Andrew Fitzmaurice addressed the guests before the big reveal; “We all are incredibly proud of BIS HCMC and all of our Vietnamese schools and colleagues, they are an absolute jewel, not only throughout South East Asia but throughout the world for offering excellence in education. Today we are very proud and delighted to be with Maurice and Rosie, as they unveil the new auditorium on this very important 25th anniversary of the school.”


The Founders Auditorium and 25 Years of Development at BIS HCMC - The Founders Auditorium and 25 Years of Development at BIS HCMC

The Founders Auditorium and 25 Years of Development at BIS HCMC - The Founders Auditorium and 25 Years of Development at BIS HCMC


After additional speeches from Shaun Williams and our Principal Mr Anthony Rowlands, the new name was unveiled by our Co-Founders Maurice Nguyen and Rosie Ngo joined by our special guests, Lord David Puttnam the Chair of the Nord Anglia Education Advisory Board and Emily Hamblin, the UK Consul General in Vietnam. 

Upon entering the Founders Auditorium for the very first time guests were treated to live music from our talented student musicians playing the Last Carnival on violin, piano and cello, alongside a slideshow highlighting some of the most memorable moments in the space across the years.

Jason on piano, Caitlin on Cello and YiHyeon on violin

As our special guests walked into our new auditorium, they would have been hard-pressed to miss the slideshow on the almost 14-meter-long hi-resolution digital screen that runs across the stage in 3 parts. They were even more impressed to discover the middle screen opens to reveal special guests and performers for extravagant theatrical entrances when our founders Maurice and Rosie and the inspiration for the school, their daughter Jenny Nguyen appeared through the centre of the screen. Equipped with many safe motion sensors, the unmissable screen will bring our performing arts and assemblies to new levels. 

Numerous cohorts of students have performed in school productions, attended weekly assemblies, rocked out at the annual Battle of the Bands and strutted down the runway at our infamous international day fashion and culture shows. Future performances and events to come will be attended by up to 400 people in the state-of-the-art refurbished space.

On Tuesday, the first student assembly took place in the new auditorium, in which our new prefect team were led out through the screen opening onto the stage, while the students looked on in awe. Our prefects introduced more about their roles and how they support our student body. 

25 Years of Development

The auditorium development in the Secondary Campus helps mark 25 years of outstanding education in Vietnam. Our co-founder Maurice reminisced on the development of the school's three campuses during his speech at our 25th-anniversary garden party. He explained how only step by step did Tiny Tots pre-school for 60 students become a multi-campus leading international school in Vietnam for around 2400 students, with 3 additional schools across Vietnam, the country of his and his co-founder Rosie’s birth.
Following the great success of the Tiny Tots preschool in 1997 and the second named Fundino the following year, the first BIS campus in District 2  started construction in 2001.
“So we came to this part of town, back then it was called An Phu, not Thao Dien. It was a sleepy village, past the BP compound where most expatriates love to live, and still love to live. This part of Thao Dien was basically marshland, and rice fields, there were no international schools so no traffic jams, the only traffic jams were created by walking buffalos and ducks on the dirt road here.” 
Completed in 2002, this building is part of what we now know as the Junior campus but was then a campus for the whole school and was later named An Phu 1 or AP1 for short. 


Opening of BIS in An Phu (Now Thao Dien) in 2002 and the same building today

Maurice went on to explain how then block by block they added to the land and built onto the campus; buying a coffee house and turning it into the current basketball court and canteen and then later came the Junior campus field; “it was a pond with ducks and we transformed it into a sports field for the school.”


Construction begins on the land that is now the Junior field.

Later in 2005, the school opened a separate purpose-built secondary campus on the land across the street, which then became known as  An Phu 2 (AP2). 



BIS Secondary Campus then and now.

The two campuses have been continuously updated over the years to provide improved holistic learning environments and more space for our growing student population. In 2020, new land was acquired at our secondary campus to make space for a new building and later on an updated basketball court and astroturf field. In 2022 the Junior campus saw the renovation of the canteen and a new multi-purpose space for performing arts, workshops and activities.
In addition to the two original buildings, in 2017 BIS opened a purpose-built Early Years and Infant Campus up the road, housing a shaded rooftop garden, sensory walkway, indoor swimming pool, DREAMs lab, multi-purpose sports court and a dedicated play and exploration space for our youngest students in Fundinotots.

Developments in Tech

But it’s not just buildings that have developed over the years but technology and school resources too. In 2023, we are proud to offer our students the latest technology including DREAMs and robotics labs, 3D printing, and interactive screens. Students no longer have to wait for their designated ICT lesson to visit the computer room and sit at 90s-sized desktops, but incorporate iPad use and technology into every class, making use of the latest apps and equipment. Post-covid and the virtual learning era, the need for tech-based learning has become ever more prominent and BIS will continue to be at the forefront of educational innovation in the coming years.





In addition to the 14m long, 3m high hi-resolution digital screen, the Founders Auditorium is fit with world-class audio and lighting plus a separate AV control room that overlooks the space. 
The “Founders Auditorium” embodies the BIS of today; tech-focused and forward-thinking whilst also offering an engaging space for exceptional performances and community events. We look forward to our first production to take place in the space next week, as our Year 5 - Year 8 students perform Disney’s High School Musical. 
For more information about the first-ever big event in the Founders Auditorium and to get your tickets before they sell out see our Facebook event page.