Friday, May 31, 2013

Korean Festival in ASEAN kicks off Philippine leg in June at the CCP

June 3, 2013, 7:00 PM Ensemble SINAWI
June 4, 2013, 7:00 PM Seoul Chamber Society
June 7, 2013, 7:30 PM Eun-ju Shin Dance Company & EDx2 Dance Company
Tanghalang Aurelio Tolentino (CCP Little Theater)
CCP Complex
Pasay, Metro Manila

The Korea Foundation in cooperation with the Cultural Center of the Philippines and the Korean Cultural Center opens the Philippine leg of the Korean Festival in ASEAN via a series of performances happening on June 3, 4 and 7, 2013 at the Cultural Center of the Philippines’ Tanghalang Aurelio Tolentino (CCP Little Theater).

On June 3, 2013, at 7:00 PM, the Ensemble SINAWI performs traditional and fusion style Korean music. The ensemble, composed of six musicians, combines the earthy essence of Korean folk music, shaman improvisational works, and Pansori narrative song with a smart, edgy and contemporary chamber jazz attitude.

Classical music takes centerstage as the Seoul Chamber Society performs on June 4, 2013 at 7:00 PM. The chamber group, playing a variety of instruments from the string, woodwind, brass and percussion sections, will perform a wide range of works from the Baroque era up to contemporary times.

Finally, the Eun-ju Shin Dance Company and the EDx2 Dance Company will highlight contemporary dance on June 7, 2013. The Eunju SHIN Dance Company is considered as the trailblazer in creating a new path for traditional Korean dance. As a successor of Taepyung-mu and Yansanhak-chum, the Intangible Cultural Heritage No. 92, Eunju SHIN creates works that integrate contemporary experimentation with a multi-faceted language of the body and motion, based on her artistic passion for contemporary expression and reinterpretation of tradition. On the other hand, the EDx2 Dance Company, established by choreographer In-soo Lee, delves into various dance genres like hiphop, contemporary, drama mime and acrobatics.

All performances will be held at the CCP Little Theater. Admission is free on a first-come, first-served basis. Limited amount of tickets can be claimed on the registration table at the CCP Little Theater lobby.

After the performances, the Korean Festival in ASEAN continues in August starting with the KF Lecture Series tackling various topics related Korea intended for Korea-related scholars and specialists, local journalists and the general public happening on August 1, 2013 at the University of the Philippines. An exhibit of Korean contemporary print works will also be on view at the Metropolitan Museum of Manila from August 1-23, 2013. This touring exhibit of the National Museum of Modern and Contemporary Art Korea features a collection of print works that display the advancement of printmaking in Korea, as aligned with the development of print technology.

The Korea Foundation was established in 1991 to promote awareness and understanding of Korea by enhancing goodwill and friendship throughout the international community. Through the festival, Korea Foundation seeks to introduce aspects of Korea’s culture and arts to local audiences in an effort to enhance mutual understanding and closer cooperation.

Ticket price:
Free admission. First-come, first-served basis

For inquiries:
Korean Cultural Center in the Philippines
Korea Foundation

Thursday, May 30, 2013

18th French Film Festival opens at Greenbelt 3 cinemas

June 7-9, 2013
Greenbelt 3
Ayala Center, Makati

FrancoPhil, the French cultural program here in the Philippines now focuses its attention to cinema as the Embassy of France to the Philippines, the Alliance Française de Manille and Institut Français present the 18th French Film Festival opening to the public this June 7-9, 2013 at the Greenbelt 3 cinemas in Makati.

For 18 years, the French Film Festival has been an instrument in celebrating the passion for cinema shared by both France, known as the birthplace of cinema, and the Philippines, a pioneering cinema in Southeast Asia. And this year’s edition closely follows the recently concluded Cannes Film Festival wherein four Philippine films were featured: Norte, Hangganan ng Kasaysayan by Lav Diaz and Death March by Adolfo Alix, Jr. participating in the Un Certain Regard category; Erik Matti’s On The Job in the Director’s Fortnight, and a special screening of the digitally-restored classic of Maynila sa mga Kuko ng Liwanag directed by the late National Artist for Film, Lino Brocka.

A special by invitation screening of Le Prénom/What’s in a Name formally opens the festival. The other films to be screened free of charge to the public include Alceste à bicyclette/Cycling with Molière, De Rouille et d’os/Rust and Bone, Du Vent dans mes mollets/The Dandelions and Camille redouble/Camille Rewinds.

The festival also reaffirms Franco-Philippine cooperation in film. The French Embassy offers its full support to the Philippine film industry by facilitating exchanges between the Centre national du cinema (CNC) and the Film Development Council of the Philippines (FDCP), initially for the establishment of the National Film Archives of the Philippines.

The 18th French Film Festival is made possible through the support of Ayala Center, Greenbelt, Ayala Malls Cinemas, Peugeot, Eurobrands Distributors Inc., L’Oréal, Total (Philippines) Corporation, Le Cellier, Airfrance KLM, Marithé François Girbaud, and Selecta Magnum, and our official media partners, the Philippine Daily Inquirer, BusinessWorld, High Life,, Radio High 105.9, and

Screening schedule:

June 7, 2013
4:00 PM The Dandelions
6:30 PM Rust and Bone
9:00 PM Camille Rewinds

June 8, 2013
4:00 PM What’s in a Name
6:30 PM Cycling with Molière
9:00 PM Rust and Bone

June 9, 2013
4:00 PM Camille Rewinds
6:30 PM The Dandelions
9:00 PM Cycling with Molière

Film synopses can be found here.

Ticket price:
Free admission. First-come, first served basis

For inquiries:
(0915) 805-3860, 

Monday, May 27, 2013

The 65th Anniversary of the State of Israel Reception

Israel Ambassador Menashe Bar-On

The Embassy of Israel commemorated its 65th Anniversary of the State of Israel at a reception held at The Ballroom of the New World Hotel. For the fourth time in a row, I’ve been honored to be among the guests who took part at the celebrations.

Israeli Ambassador Menashe Bar-On and his wife Madame Esther Bar-On were very gracious in welcoming their guests. In his speech, Ambassador Bar-On once again reminded how the Philippines was the only Asian country among other nations that signed UN Resolution 181 which eventually led to the establishment of the Israeli state. And since then, the relationship between the two nations has remained strong.

One of the distinguished guests that night was former President Fidel V. Ramos. Many of the guests, including foreigners, took the opportunity to have their photos taken with him. And Pres. Ramos was in good spirits and humored everyone by exhibiting a strong grip when shaking hands.

Yaniv Revach, Mme. Esther Bar-On, Amb. Menashe Bar-On and RAd

I’ve always been grateful to the Embassy of Israel since they, especially the Deputy Chief of Mission, Mr. Yaniv Revach, played a major role in what I’ve been able to accomplish within the music/cultural scene so far. And it makes me nostalgic thinking how far I’ve gone ever since I was at their service while they were celebrating their 62nd Anniversary.

There are still more cultural events, music speficifally, courtesy of the Embassy of Israel coming on the horizon. And better watch out in this blog for future announcements regarding those.

Text by RAd
Photos by Vincent Garrucho

Manila Symphony Orchestra launches 2013-2014 Concert Season

The Manila Symphony Orchestra is set to bring color to our world through music via their 2013-2014 Concert Season dubbed as Color Your World. The orchestra had a press conference recently at the Ayala Museum launching the new season which will now be held mostly at the Santiago Francisco Hall at the South Tower of the BDO Corporate Center.

Guest artists for this season include a couple of Belgians: Thanos Adamopoulos who will be conducting the MSO once again and trumpeter Manu Mellaerts. Both will be performing in a concert co-presented by the Embassy of Belgium. Netherlands-trained double bassist Jiovanni Tabada and violinist Diomedes Saraza Jr. who recently graduated from the Juilliard School will also be among the guest soloists this season. Several MSO musicians to be featured as soloists include concertmaster Gina Medina, oboist Jayson Pagtakhan, clarinetist Randolf Lopez, horn player Celso de Leon, and bassoonist Noel Singcuenco.

The Manila Symphony Orchestra

This season will also celebrate the bicentennial anniversary of Giuseppe Verdi through a concert extravaganza featuring his works. This concert will put the spotlight on a mixture of veteran and up-and-coming vocalists that include sopranos Camille Lopez-Molina, Tanya Corcuera and Myramae Meneses, tenor Ivan Niccolo Nery and baritone Noel Azcona. Prof. Arturo Molina conducts the Manila Symphony Orchestra for the whole season with the exception of the concert featuring guest conductor Adamopoulos.

The MSO also has a promo wherein subscribers can win an iPad mini. One has to subscribe to and attend all five concerts to be eligible to win. A subscriber can let someone else use his pass if he couldn’t make it to the concert himself. This promo was intended to encourage subscribers to make full use of their subscription.

The press conference was held prior to the fifth and last concert of the Rush Hour Concert Series that was held at the ground floor lobby of the Ayala Museum. Previous concerts featured various sections and all the sections finally got together for the last concert of the series that also served as the MSO 2013-2014 Season Launch. The audience was treated to a variety of music ranging from the Baroque era up to the 20th Century. The orchestra also offered a teaser of their upcoming season by playing the Finale from Joseph Haydn’s Symphony No. 88 in G major and Mars from Gustav Holst’s The Planets, Op. 32. Both of these pieces will be played in its entirety at a couple of their concerts this season.

Conductor Arturo Molina

The concert series were aimed towards office workers in Makati as a way to pass the time while waiting for the rush hour traffic subside. And I was pleasantly surprised when I saw unfamiliar faces enjoying the performance and the concert regulars were nowhere to be seen. This means that the Rush Hour Concert Series was able to reach out to a new audience that the MSO and I hope will eventually check out the orchestra's upcoming season.

Here is the schedule of MSO's Color Your World 2013-2014 Concert Season:

June 8, 2013

Gina Medina, violin 
Jiovanni Tabada, double bass
Arturo Molina, conductor

Lucio San Pedro Ang Buwan sa Kabundukan
Giovanni Bottesini Gran Duo Concertante for Violin and Double Bass
Gustav Holst The Planets, Op. 32
John Williams
     Overture from E.T the Extra-Terrestrial
     Theme from Star Wars

July 6, 2013

Manu Mellaerts, trumpet
Thanos Adamopoulos, conductor

Wolfgang Amadeus Mozart Symphony No. 35 in D major, K. 385 Haffner
Johann Nepomuk Hummel Trumpet Concerto in E flat major, S. 49
Franz Schubert Symphony No. 9 in C major D. 944 Great

August 10, 2013

Diomedes Saraza Jr., violin
Arturo Molina, conductor

Antonín Dvořák Carnival Concert Overture, Op. 92, B. 169
Béla Bartók Violin Concerto No. 2, BB 117
Pyotr Ilyich Tchaikovsky Symphony No. 4 in F minor, Op. 36

September 14, 2013

Camille Lopez-Molina, soprano
Tanya Corcuera, soprano
Myramae Meneses, soprano
Ivan Niccolo Nery, tenor
Noel Azcona, baritone
Arturo Molina, conductor

January 14, 2014

Jayson Pagtakhan, oboe
Randolf Lopez, clarinet
Celso de Leon, horn
Noel Singcuenco, bassoon
Arturo Molina, conductor

Joseph Haydn Symphony No. 88 in G major, Hob. 1/88
Wolfgang Amadeus Mozart Sinfonia Concertante in E flat major for Oboe, Clarinet, Horn, and Bassoon, K. 297b
Ludwig van Beethoven Symphony No. 1 in C major, Op. 21

All concerts will be held at the Santiago Francisco Hall at the South Tower of the BDO Corporate Center except the June 8 concert Ode to Stars which will be held at the Cultural Center of the Philippines’ Tanghalang Nicanor Abelardo (CCP Main Theater).

Gina Medina and Jiovanni Tabada headline MSO’s opening concert

Gina Medina, violin 
Jiovanni Tabada, double bass
Manila Symphony Orchestra
Arturo Molina, conductor

Lucio San Pedro Ang Buwan sa Kabundukan
Giovanni Bottesini Gran Duo Concertante for Violin and Double Bass
Gustav Holst The Planets, Op. 32
John Williams
     Overture from E.T the Extra-Terrestrial
     Theme from Star Wars

For the second time in three years, the Manila Symphony Orchestra will hold its opening concert at the Cultural Center of the Philippines’ Tanghalang Nicanor Abelardo (CCP Main Theater). This concert billed as Ode to Stars will feature soloists Gina Medina (violin) and Jiovanni Tabada (double bass) performing Giovanni Bottesini’s Gran Duo Concertante for Violin and Double Bass.

The MSO also takes advantage of the bigger CCP stage as they prepare to perform a monumental work of music: Gustav Holst’s The Planets, Op. 32. The suite’s Jupiter, the Bringer of Jollity is immensely popular and mostly played on its own. But the audience will now have the chance to hear the orchestra play the suite in its entirety. In keeping with the night’s theme of heavenly bodies, the orchestra will also perform Lucio San Pedro’s Ang Buwan sa Kabundukan. and music from the films Star Wars and E.T. the Extra Terrestrial by John Williams. Prof. Arturo Molina conducts in this concert.

Violinist Gina Medina

Concertmaster Gina Medina is a familiar face and presence in the country’s classical music scene. She has performed as soloist with the Manila Symphony Orchestra and the Philippine Philharmonic Orchestra for the past few years. She is also an active chamber music performer as well. Jiovanni Tabada on the other hand, is still relatively unknown in the country. The MSO hopes that this concert will introduce Jiovanni to the Filipino audience.

Double Bassist Jiovanni Tabada

According to the MSO’s facebook page, Jiovanni received his basic music training on double bass in 1996 at Salvador and Pilar Sala Foundation in Cebu. Four years later, he was awarded a full grant to study in one of the best conservatories in Europe, the Royal Conservatory in The Hague, Netherlands. In 2009, Jiovanni graduated from the Royal Conservatory with a Masters Degree in Music, Major in Double Bass, with distinction. He has performed with the Sinfonia Rotterdam Chamber Orchestra, the Holland Sinfonia, and the Rotterdam Philharmonic Orchestra. He now resides in his hometown, Cebu, and is contributing to its growing music scene. He is currently the music program director of Sistemang Pilipino, an outreach program for children. At Sistemang Pilipino, he strives to promote his vision that music is for everyone.

Ticket prices:
P1200 Orchestra Center
P800 Orchestra Side
P600 Balcony I
-50% student discount
-20% senior citizen discount
-20% early bird promo available until May 30, 2013 only

For inquiries:
523-5712, (0916) 408-7549,

Thursday, May 23, 2013

Flamenco master Eduardo Guerrero returns to Manila

Flamenco dancer Eduardo Guerrero

June 14-15, 20138:00 PM
Tanghalang Aurelio Tolentino (CCP Little Theater)
CCP Complex
Pasay, Metro Manila

Eduardo Guerrero, dancer/choreographer
Manuel Soto, vocals
Javier Ibáñez, guitar

Returning Spanish flamenco dancer and choreographer Eduardo Guerrero presents a repeat performance of De Dolores, a flamenco concert happening this June 14-15, 2013, 8:00 PM at the Cultural Center of the Philippines’ Tanghalang Aurelio Tolentino (CCP Little Theater). This flamenco event is in line with Sonidos de España, Spanish Festival at the CCP and is presented in collaboration with the Cultural Center of the Philippines, the Embassy of Spain, Instituto Cervantes de Manila and Bench.

According to the press release, the Cádiz born Guerrero started dancing at age six and has went on to study Spanish dance Conservatorio de Danza de Cádiz. He has completed his conservatory and classical training with David Greenall and Monserrat Marin. He has worked with the biggest names in flamenco such as Eva Yerbabuena, Amador Rojas and Antonio Canales, among others. He has garnered several awards such as La Perla de Cádiz and the First prize in the II Choreographic Contest of Andalucia Professional Dance Conservatories.

Guerrero first staged De Dolores in Manila back in November 2012 to a full house at the Carlos P. Romulo Auditorium. I felt bad missing that one so I am very glad to see him have a repeat performance at the CCP. Joining him in this concert is singer Manuel Soto and guitarist Javier Ibáñez.

De Dolores is the second event of Sonidos de España, Spanish Festival at the CCP. The Spanish festival kicks off with Romantico Enrique Viana (The Unending Passion of the Zarzuela) happening on June 11, 20138:00 PM.

Ticket price:
-50% student discount
-20% senior citizen discount

For inquiries:
CCP at 832-1125
Embassy of Spain 817-6676 local 112,

Monday, May 20, 2013

Nonie Buencamino opens musical theater concerts at the CCP

Nonie Buencamino

June 13, 2013, 7:30 PM
Tanghalang Aurelio Tolentino (CCP Little Theater)
CCP Complex
Pasay, Metro Manila

The Cultural Center of the Philippines presents a musical concert series entitled Triple Threats: Leading Men and Women of Philippine Musical Theater featuring three of the country’s musical theater heavyweights. Kicking of the series is acclaimed actor for stage, television and film Nonie Buencamino in Much Ado About Nonie happening on June 13, 2013, 7:30 PM at the CCP's Tanghalang Aurelio Tolentino (CCP Little Theater).

Buencamino started his professional acting career back in 1983 with Repertory Philippines. He also served as a pioneering member of the Tanghalang Pilipino Actors Company. Since then, he has won numerous awards and citations including the 2005 Aliw Best Stage Actor in Mario O’Hara’s Palasyo ni Valentin, 2005 Asian TV Awards Best Actor for Magpakailanman, and Star Awards Best Supporting Actor for Milagros, Midnight Dancers, and Batad among many others.

He is currently seen on the television series Dugong Buhay airing over at ABS-CBN and was also part of the top rating series Walang Hanggan also shown in the same network. He was recently seen on stage as the King at the Resorts World Manila’s The King and I and as Tirso at Tanghalang Pilipino’s Stageshow.

Nonie met with some members of the press during an intimate gathering at the CCP. It was during this time that I learned a lot more about Nonie whom I embarrassingly know more for his film and television roles portraying the nasty villain and occasional rapist.  Nonie teased about the songs to be performed on the show: Broadway tunes, career defining songs from his Tanghalang Pilipino days, pop songs and a few fun surprises.

One thing regarding this show that excites Nonie a lot is Mitch Valdez’s being one of the guests. He fondly remembers being a guest in one of her shows and doing an act together. This act gave Nonie one of his most memorable performances which is why he wanted to include it in Much Ado About Nonie. And Nonie has also tapped Mitch’s director from the show, Kokoy Jimenez to direct his show as well. It will be a family affair as well since wife Shamaine Centenera-Buencamino and daughter Delphine will also be guests in the show. Nonie admits that working with his wife keeps him on his toes since she is very precise in her work.

Nonie will be accompanied by a five piece band led by music director Carmela Sinco. One bit of trivia is that cousins Nonie and Carmela both belong to the Buencamino family of distinguished musicians/composers that also includes Francisco Buencamino Sr., Nonong Buencamino and virtuoso pianist Cecile Licad.

Upcoming concerts of Triple Threats: Leading Men and Women of Philippine Musical Theater series will feature Audie Gemora on July 5, 2013 and Menchu Lauchengco-Yulo on August 15, 2013. Subscription package for all three concerts is also available for P1500 Orchestra Center and P1200 Orchestra Side.

Ticket prices:
P800 Orchestra Center
P600 Orchestra Side
-50% student discount
-20% senior citizen discount

For inquiries:
CCP Box Office 832-3704

Saturday, May 18, 2013

Rico Blanco stages solo concert at Music Museum

June 12, 2013, 8:30 PM
Music Museum
Greenhills Shopping Center
San Juan

A festive Philippine Independence Day celebration is set to happen as Rico Blanco stages his first ever solo concert entitled Rico Blanco Live! at the Music Museum this June 12, 2013 at 8:30 PM.

Five years after going solo and two albums (Your Universe and Galactik Fiestamatik) later, Rico Blanco is set to perform his greatest. Rico Blanco Live! is expected to exceed the audio visual spectacle of his album launch and Fiesto sa Bistro that created a lot of buzz from those who were able to see them.

Performing as his alter ego Fiesto Bandido, Blanco gives his greatest hits from his vast repertoire as a solo artist (Amats, Burado, Lipat Bahay, Your Universe, Antukin, Posible, and Yugto) and as the former frontman of Rivermaya (214, You’ll be Safe Here, Umaaraw, Umuulan, Elesi, and Awit ng Kabataan) the Galacitk Fiestamatik treatment: electronic arrangement featuring heavy and distinct drumbeats.

Rico Blanco Live! is presented by Warner Music Philippines along with Smart Communications.

Tickets prices:
P1300 VIP
P1000 Orchestra
P700 Balcony

For inquiries:
Music Museum 721-6726
SM Tickets 470-2222
TicketWorld 891-9999

Galactik Fiestamatik, released by WarnerMusic Philippines is now available in record stores nationwide. Amats and the rest of the tracks are also available for digital download over at  iTunes.

Galactik Fiestamatik

1. Amats
2. Burado
3. Lipat Bahay
4. When the Wheels Turn
5. Sayaw
6. Hours and Days
7. Chismis
8. What It Is?
9. Ngayon

Friday, May 17, 2013

Zarzuela recital opens Spanish Festival at the CCP

Tenor Enrique Viana

June 11, 2013, 8:00 PM
Tanghalang Aurelio Tolentino (CCP Little Theater)
CCP Complex
Pasay, Metro Manila

Enrique Viana, tenor
Daniel Oyarzabal, piano

The Cultural Center of the Philippines, the Embassy of Spain and Instituto Cervantes de Manila open Sonidos de España, Spanish Festival at the CCP with an evening of music via Romantico Enrique Viana (The Unending Passion of the Zarzuela) this June 11, 2013, 8:00 PM at the Tanghalang Aurelio Tolentino (CCP Little Theater).

This one night music event featuring tenor Enrique Viana and pianist Daniel Oyarzabal will highlight the Zarzuela, a Spanish lyric-dramatic genre that alternates between spoken and sung scenes, the latter incorporating operatic and popular song, as well as dance. The zarzuela is yet another Spanish art form that was adapted locally and turned into what is known as the sarswela. The sarswela had its heyday during the early 20th century before the onset of World War II. This recital will be a good opportunity for audiences to see and hear for themselves the Zaruela.

Pianist Daniel Oyarzabal

According to the press release, tenor Enrique Viana studied singing at the Royal Conservatory of Music before taking extensive studies in Barcelona, Milan, Siena, Rome and Paris. Aside from the Zarzuela, Enrique has also portrayed the traditional operatic roles such as the Duke in Rigoletto, Alfredo in La Traviata, Fenton in Falstaff, Basilio in The Marriage of Figaro, Ernesto in Don Pasqual and Tonio in La fille du regiment, Count Almaviva in The Barber of Seville, and Ramiro in La Cenerentola among other roles. Viana will be accompanied at the concert by pianist Daniel Oyarzabal.

Romantico Enrique Viana (The Unending Passion of the Zarzuela), a part of the Sonidos de España Spanish Festival at the CCP is free admission and open to the public. The other event of the festival is the De Dolores flamenco concert featuring Eduardo Guerrero happening on June 14-15, 2013, 8:00 PM at the CCP Little Theater.

Ticket price:
Free admission with prior reservation

For inquiries:
Instituto Cervantes 526-1485
Cultural Center of the Philippines 832-1125 local 1601
Related Posts Plugin for WordPress, Blogger...