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Showing posts from June, 2012

Helsinki toast Candice Adea to open Ballet Philippines' 43rd season

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Helsinki toast Candice Adea to open 
Ballet Philippines' 43rd season
By Walter Ang
June 18, 2012
Philippine Daily Inquirer

Ballet Philippines opens its 43rd season with "Songs," a gala of masterworks featuring the work of international and Philippine choreographers on July 6-8 at the Cultural Center of the Philippines' Tanghalang Nicanor Abelardo.

The season is dubbed "Dragon Song," inspired by this year being the Chinese year of the dragon.  "Dragon years are always significant with their great energy and sense of renewal, the beginning of a new cycle," says BP artistic director Paul Morales.

In "Songs," fresh from winning first place in the women's category of the 2012 Helsinki International Ballet Competition, one of the most prestigious ballet competitions in the world, principal dancer Candice Adea will perform in the world premiere of a new grand pas de deux choreographed by former BP artistic director Bam Damian.

The piece was s…

Virgin Labfest 2012 has ten new plays, 4 'virgin' playwrights

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Virgin Labfest 2012 has ten new plays, 4 'virgin' playwrights*
By Walter Ang
June 18, 2012
Philippine Daily Inquirer

This years' Virgin Labfest will present ten new works: three sets of one-act trilogies and one full-length (two-act) play at the Cultural Center of the Philippines. (See line-up in sidebar.)

Now on its eight year, the labfest is "a venue for playwrights, directors and actors to bring to life 'untried, untested, unpublished and unstaged' plays."

Tuxqs Rutaquio is the new artistic director, taking over from Rody Vera, who founded the festival through Writer's Bloc, a playwright's group, and Tanghalang Pilipino, CCP's resident theater company.  This year's funding is partially provided by CCP and the National Commission on Culture and the Arts.

Young, new
"The labfest has grown in popularity and reputation throughout the years among audiences, teachers and theater artists," says Rutaquio.

"We've heard from grou…

French film, music, dance, fashion featured in FrancoPhil 2012

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French film, music, dance, fashion featured in FrancoPhil 2012
By Walter Ang
June 11, 2012
Philippine Daily Inquirer

This year’s French film festival kicks off the events for the second half of the year of FrancoPhil, a yearlong series of cultural events organized by the Embassy of France in the Philippines and Alliance Française de Manille.

“FrancoPhil is a play on the word ‘Francophile,’ meaning a lover of French culture, and is a celebration of the ties that bind French and Filipino cultures,” says Astrid Renoux, cultural attaché. “It also highlights the collaboration between French and Filipino artists in many of the events.”

Now on its third year, this year’s FrancoPhil is organized with Rustan’s Department Stores. FrancoPhil activities include performances, exhibits, workshops, across different art forms.

Film
The film festival opened last weekend with the Philippine premiere of the romance-comedy “The Artist,” written and directed in the style of a black-and-white silent film by …

Al Gatmaitan serenades the ladies

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Al Gatmaitan serenades the ladies
By Walter Ang
June 4, 2012
Philippine Daily Inquirer

Tenor Al Gatmaitan used to serenade his girlfriend in college. “She liked it when I sang to her,” he says.

Audiences will get their turn to be serenaded by Gatmaitan in Philippine Opera Company’s “Ang Bagong Harana,” a musical revue featuring traditional and contemporary Filipino songs.

Gatmaitan has been singing since he was a child but never thought he could do it professionally.  “Every Sunday, I’d go with my lola to hear Mass and I’d sing my heart out in all of the songs. My brother would hit me with his elbow because I was singing too loud.

“I’d imagine myself being there in front, singing with the choir, but it was always the old ladies of the church who sang, so I thought, 'Nah, it’ll never happen.' I had to be content with my fantasies.”

Almost not
Growing up in Bulacan, Gatmaitan figured he might become a priest.  “My great-grandfather was a priest, my other grandmother is a Franciscan…