Since 2016, I got into writing Filipino haikus and accompany them with a nice photo of a place I am in. Check out my simple (and I hope not so trying hard!) Haikus on Instagram (search for hashtags #HAInaKU or #Touringkittywrites).
Last month I have been meaning to post something for Women’s Month, and was supposed to do on the last day of it, but Holy Week was jampacked with work and church activities. So here I am with the poem I finished the eve of Palm Sunday.
Buwan ng Panitikan naman ngayong Abril. Pasok pa rin ang pagkakasulat ko nito dito.
You’ve got EUr story to tell? Then join the European Union Essay Writing Contest!
Delegation of the European Union in the Philippines
What’s EUr story? Essay Writing Competition
1. Eligible Participants
This contest is open only to Filipino citizens aged 16 – 35 years old. Employees of the Delegation of the European Union in the Philippines (EU), its affiliates, advertising and promotion agencies and suppliers, (collectively the “Employees”), and family members and/or those living in the same household of Employees until the third degree of consanguinity are not eligible to participate in the Campaign.
The contest is divided into two categories;
a) High School Competition – This category is open to qualified high school students. Entrants must be enrolled at the time of the beginning of the contest period.
b) Collegiate Competition – This category is open to qualified individuals that are currently enrolled in local colleges and universities.
c) Open Competition – This category is open to all entrants that are eligible participants but are no longer enrolled as students. Young professionals and full-time writers are welcome to enter the competition.
3. Format and Theme
All entries should be written in essay format and in English, with a minimum of 700 words and a maximum of 1,000 words for the student categories and a minimum of 1,500 words with a maximum of 2000 words for the professional category.
All entries must written using MS Word, font size 12, font Times New Roman and double-spaced, with 3/4th-inch margins top and bottom and ½ inch margins left and right.
The title should be in font size 16, justified center in boldface and located at the very top of the page and proceeded by the author’s byline in font size 12.
The essay must adhere to the general theme “What’s EU-r story?”.
The essay may say something about the author’s, or someone close to the author’s experience in any of the 28 member states of the European Union* or in any of the Delegation of the European Union’s NGO or civil society organisation partners. The essay may also talk about other experiences or inspiration the author may have had with European influences or European Nationals in their environment or personal lives.
4. Delivery of Entries
Entries may be submitted by e-mail to the following address: email@example.com
Entries must be saved in PDF format and included as an attachment to the e-mail. Other required attachments are; a scan of one valid ID. Entries to the Student Competitions should also include a scan of the entrant’s school ID.
The e-mail subject must be written as: What’s EU-r story: Contestant Name_Category
The body of the e-mail should include your full name, age and complete contact details.
5. Judgment Criteria
The entries shall be judged on the basis of the following criteria:
a. substance, content, originality, analysis and adherence to the theme – 65%
b. logic, organisation and coherence – 20%
c. style and presentation – 15%
6. Campaign Period
Entries will be accepted online starting on April 1, 2017, and all entries must be submitted by 30 June 2017 at 23:59 GMT+8.
One “Grand Winner” will be selected from the winners of the three categories. They will each receive a trophy, gadgets and other promo items from the EU Delegation to the Philippines. “Major Winners” from each category will be chosen, along with ten best works from each category that will be selected as “Finalists”. The works of the Grand Winner, Major Winners and Finalists will be printed in a compendium to be published by the EU as well as posted on Philstar.com.
No cash or other prize substitution shall be permitted. The prize is nontransferable.
It is understood that a participant when submitting his or her entry for the competition that he or she is allowing the EU Delegation to the Philippines to use his or her work for the purpose of promoting the Campaign and entry for purposes of advertising and trade without further compensation unless prohibited by law.
8. Winner Selection and Notification
The Winner and Finalists will be selected by a panel of judges based on the contest’s specified criteria. The Winners and Finalists will be notified by e-mail, facebook and telephone within five (5) working days following the results of the selection process. The Delegation of the European Union in the Philippines shall have no liability for the Winners’ and Finalists’ failure to receive notices due to spam, junk e-mail or other security settings or for Winners’ or Finalists’ provision of incorrect or otherwise non-functioning contact information. If the Winners or Finalists cannot be contacted, is ineligible, and fails to claim the prize within 30 days from the time award notification was sent, or fails to timely return a completed and executed declaration and release as required, the prize may be forfeited and an alternate Winner will be selected.
CONCERT: #galingNAMCYA: Saludo ng Kabataan sa Araw ng Kasarinlan
In celebration of the Philippine Independence Day, our young winners of the National Music Competitions for Young Artists (NAMCYA) embrace and reminisce our hard-fought freedom with music.
Music has been a potent mode of expression since the colonial times in the assertion of Filipino nationalism. It is still today. This is the NAMCYA’s way of rekindling the ideas and emotions brought about by our fight for freedom.
This is a partnership with the BGC Arts Center through its festival, “BGC Loves Local,” in the newly opened concert venue, Globe Auditorium, at the Maybank Performing Arts Center. Join us in our musical celebration as our next generation artists enthral you with virtuosic renditions of well-loved Filipino classics.
The concert features NAMCYA laureates Andrew Constantino (clarinet), Carlo Antonio Juan (guitar), Gabriel Allan Paguirigan (piano), Jeanne Rafaella Marquez (violin), Maria Gereberne Lozada (soprano), and Boscorale (Alvin Paulin, conductor).
This concert is also supported by Lyric Pianos.
June 11, 2017 (Sunday), 3:00 pm, at the Globe Auditorium, Maybank Performing Arts Center, 26th Street corner 9th Avenue, BGC, Taguig City Metro Manila.
TICKET PRICES: 1,000 / 500 / 350
20% discount available for senior citizens, PWDs and students with valid ID
Tickets are now available at all TicketWorld outlets (891-9999 or bit.ly/galingNAMCYABGC), BGC Arts Center Box Office and
For more information and other inquiries, please contact:
CHERRY BONG EDRALIN
8364928 to 29 (NAMCYA Secretariat)
0917-750- 0107, 0918-959- 3949 , 218 3791
So happy to be back on track! This year started with my well-received performance as Sisa in Noli Me Tangere the Opera (read a review of my performance here). Recently, I had several singing engagements as a soloist. #goals for a soprano mom like me.
Here is one of those performances, which I really truly treasure. And made me rediscover my “hidden” love for Charlotte Church. Yup, the once child soprano who sings Pie Jesu and that car anthem, and is now doing pop (wah, can’t relate to her music anymore, but I can relate that she’s a mum–a homeschooling mum like me, that is!) and she’s kind of a political activist of late.
One of Church’s repertoire, Ave Maria (which I lately found out was wrongly attributed to Caccini–it was by a Russian composer), and here performed with a ten-piece chamber ensemble of one of my favourite groups, the Manila String Machine, here is a live and raw recording which I posted in time for the Feast of the Annunciation of the Lord last March 25th.
Know more about the Battle of Manila through this day-long festival, right at the heart of where it happened–Intramuros!
See, hear, feel, smell, and even taste what 1945 was in this historic event. Relive that long forgotten battle in the Manila Transitio Festival 2017.
THE 8th MANILA TRANSITIO FESTIVAL
FEBRUARY 26, 2017
BALUARTE SAN DIEGO, SANTA LUCIA CORNER MURALLA STREET, INTRAMUROS
3:00PM to 11:30PM
ENTRANCE FEE: PAY WHAT YOU CAN
In February of 1945, at the close of the second world war, “The Battle of Manila” devastated the capital city of the Philippine Islands. Caught in a clash between the armed forces of the United States and Japan, Manila, once known for it’s architectural beauty and gracious citizens, had been battered and brought to her knees. Collateral damage in a war not of her own making.
By March, the districts from Caloocan to Malate lay in ruins; the 300 year-old walled city of Intramuros was reduced to rubble, and over 100,000 of the city’s civilians lay dead.
But the worst loss of all would happen after the war. In the decades that passed, the people of Manila chose to forget “The Battle of Manila”. Instead of rebuilding the city’s grand churches and monuments, the survivors of this tragedy chose to remove themselves. By the 1980s, the city of Manila, once called the Pearl of The Orient, had become mess of uninspired commercial developments, parochial gated communities, and indigent informal settlements. Manila’s heritage sites fell into neglect and her history dropped from consciousness. A huge gap was blown into the collective national memory. Until today, seventy two years later, there is still no national holiday nor monument dedicated to “The Battle of Manila” nor the 100,000 souls who perished.
For the last eight years, Intramuros Administration, #vivamanila, and Carlos Celdran have hosted a gathering called Manila Transitio as a way of remembering the “Battle of Manila”. This yearly commemoration is defined by a public picnic, an art exhibition, a community ritual, and an open air concert held inside one of the many gardens of Intramuros. This event hopes to remind Manila’s residents that they once lived in a proud, beautiful city and that the memory of the 100,000 civilians who died in the battle should be honored.
Ultimately. Manila Transitio is really all about recognizing the city’s changes; Manila’s transitions from what it was, to what is, and to what it can possibly become in the future.
Guests of Manila Transitio can bring their own blankets, picnic baskets, dogs, friends and family.
Guests can set their blankets out on the grass and spend the day into night watching the concert in front of them, appreciating the art surrounding them, and sharing a community spirit.
There is no dress code; cosplay is encouraged. Filipiniana is recommended.
Food and drink will be available from vendors on-site.
Quiapo candle ladies will also on site to grant wishes and add a spiritual element to the evening.
As a highlight, there will be a surprise community ritual as a symbolic gesture.
Our theme for this year’s memorial is: “Folk Art. Folk Traditions. Folk Music”. Work by artists: Russ Ligtas, Mitch Garcia, Ian Madrigal, Martin Lorenzo De Mesa, Mars Bugaoan, Jodee Aguillon and Hataw, Leeroy New, Derek Tumala, GA Fallarme, Denis Lagdameo, Rosa Mirasol Esguerra Melencio, and Tad Ermitaño will be set all around the gardens.
In line with this year’s theme. the main stage will spotlight the “Tres Marias”, a trio consisting of Bayang Barrios, Cookie Chua, and Lolita Carbon. Three powerful women considered to be the country’s foremost voices in rock, folk, soul and protest music.
Paolo Garcia (Parallel Uno) will DJ music between sets.
This year’s food and drink vendors: XO1946, Edgy Veggy, Ralph’s Wines, Distileria Limtuaco, Curry Wurst Meister, Ziazan Mezze/THC, V Hotel, Public School/Kalsada Coffee.
At the door, guests will pay an entrance fee of any amount at their discretion. One peso is appreciated just as much as one thousand pesos. Pay what you can.
We hope to see you there.
Hashtags: #manilatransitio #vivamanila
I really like how the play of words came about in this upcoming concert of the National Music Competitions for Young Artists. It’s current yet shows NAMCYA’s authority when it comes to local classical music competitions.
The concert will feature previous prizewinners who have made their mark in the local classical music scene. All of them I’m pretty sure aspired to become excellent musicians, that’s why they join competitions not to win, but to somehow level off themselves among other musicians their age.
Maybe you or someone you know has joined the NAMCYA especially in their young ages. Maybe you are curious to find out more about the NAMCYA. Or maybe you are interested to support and sustain the annual event.
Watch the #galingNAMCYA on July 16, and get reintroduced with the premiere classical music competitions in the country.
Accomplished musicians who have proven their brilliance nationally and internationally are set to perform in a concert on July 16, 2016, to showcase works by Filipino and foreign composers and raise funds for the National Music Competitions for Young Artists (NAMCYA).
To be held at the Little Theater of the Cultural Center of the Philippines (CCP), the concert, titled #galingNAMCYA, features past winners of NAMCYA, the country’s most prestigious music competition for the youth for more than 40 years.
The performers include Carlo Antonio Juan (Guitar), Sara Maria Gonzales (Violin), Christian Tan (Violin), Kim Carl Mirandilla Ng (Viola), Arnold Josue (Cello), Gabriel Allan Paguirigan (Piano), Luci Magalit (Piano), Myramae Tapia Meneses (Soprano), Antonio Maigue (Flute), Reynato Resurreccion, Jr., (Oboe), Ariel Sta. Ana (Clarinet), Frenvee Andra (Bassoon), Naomi Sison (Piano), and Jay-ar Mesa (French Horn, guest horn player).
“We are very excited to have these NAMCYA winners perform and show that many of our world-class musicians were shaped by their experiences in NAMCYA,” said Renato Lucas, Secretary-General of NAMCYA, and who is also a past winner of the competition.
“We titled the concert #galingNAMCYA because we want people to know that these performers came from NAMCYA and that they represent the wealth of talent that NAMCYA attracts every year,” added Lucas.
“Before all these talent contests that we see today on TV, there was NAMCYA. It was where excellent musicians were discovered and nurtured to become world-class performers. NAMCYA continues to do that, and we want everyone to know that NAMCYA’s advocacy is to help our youth develop musical excellence and promote Philippine music.”
#galingNAMCYA aims to raise funds to help NAMCYA in its advocacy. Activities include the competitions and special performances in November, as well as outreach performances, workshops on Philippine music, and commissioning of new Filipino works.
#galingNAMCYA’s virtuosi will perform masterpieces of Filipino composers such as Nicanor Abelardo, Bayani M. De Leon, Manuel Velez, and Felipe P. De Leon, Sr., as well as works of foreign composers such as Ludwig van Beethoven, Paul Dukas, and Francis Poulenc.
RAFFLE: Read up to the end of this post to WIN tickets for this concert!
Women guitar power in this upcoming concert dominates. Japanese Sachiko will be joined by rising female guitar trio, Triple Fret. See more below.
In celebration of the 60th year of Philippines-Japan Friendship
The Independent Philippine Art Ventures, Inc. together with Japan Foundation Manila
proudly present REVERIE: A Classical Guitar Concert Featuring Sachiko Miyashita
Born in Sapporo, Japan. Miyashita began playing guitar at the age of seven.
Miyashita graduated from Hokkaido University. In 2003, she received a Diploma de Merito from Academia Musicale Chigiana in Siena, Italy. She studied guitar performance under the tutelage of great guitarists – S.Fukuda, O.Ghiglia, E.Fernandez, P.Steidl, D.Russell and F. Cuenca.
In 1991, she bagged the 1st prize in the Classical Guitar Competition (Tokyo), and won 2nd prize in the 2002 Andres Segovia International Competition (Spain). In addition to her domestic concert schedule, she gave concerts throughout Spain, France, Germany, Italy, the Czech Republic, U.S.A., Korea, Thailand, Philippine – 26 cities in eleven countries. She has attended many guitar festivals as soloist and juror, in Europe and Asia.
Miyashita is a recipient of the Sapporo City Outstanding Artist Award, and also a recipient of the 20th Hokkaido Bank Art Culture Award. Her latest CD Le Depart was selected as “choice CD” in Record Geijutsu Magazine and topped the Yahoo! Japan sales rankings.
She is an instructor at Sapporo Otani University – Department of Arts, and is a member of the Japan Federation of Guitarists.
And here’s the raffle, for a chance to win two tickets each for her concert:
I am a frustrated ballerina. Up to this point, I still wonder what if I took formal ballet as a child. I will never forget my ballet presentation in school, where we had a show in Folk Arts Theater, no less.
My daughter, meanwhile, loved ballet, that it took us three years to ensure she likes it.
Aria finally finished her first ballet classes under Ballet Manila.
Since we only live in the next street, we decided to enrol in this school run by Prima Ballerina Lisa Macuja-Elizalde and Osias Barroso.
Three years ago when she first learned about ballet, through a cartoon called Angelina Ballerina, and eventually through a book about ballet which I bought online.
She had watched a lot of ballet performances, from three ballet companies in the area (I love Pasay City because it’s an arts hub, despite the crowded and traffic streets!). The very first full length we watched was in 2014 which is Ballet Philippines’ Cinderella. Then we watched Mga Kwento ni Lola Basyang, which was her fifth birthday outreach activity, sponsoring kids from Food for Hungry Minds to watch this ballet. Before Christmas last year, she watched Philippine Ballet Theater’s The Nutcracker with her dad, and Ballet Philippines’ Peter Pan.
And so, this summer, we asked her again if she is really decided to take ballet. Since this will take up most of her time, we really had to ask her not once but a lot of times.
Good thing, Ballet Manila had an Open House activity in March where Aria got to try a full hour of lesson.
What we liked about Ballet Manila was, aside from its proximity, the waiting area for parents and guardians has CCTV so you could see your child while in class. I just hope they would be more strict in terms of security, especially when their gates are wide open and outside the parking area is the busy one way street already.
Finally, she started lessons in April. We didn’t have ballet clothes yet, but we got sponsors.
My mom and sister (thank God for them!) bought almost all of her clothes–from leotards to tights to shoes.
Aria had ballet lessons three times a week, but since Mommy and Daddy had to work, too, it was mostly my mom–her Nonna–who takes her to class. Good thing we’re literally a skip and a hop away! One pedicab, actually, since it was scorching hot during her timeslot of 11 in the morning.
She eventually had rehearsals, which filled up her afternoons. She skipped a couple of sessions due to other pre-scheduled events (which were actually because of this blog). She even squeezed in two weeks of swimming lessons in a nearby hotel (that’a story for another day).
Thereafter, they had a photoshoot session for the souvenir program.
She was so excited for the recital, that ever since learning her steps, she kept on practicing at home with her doll as partner (talk about artist discipline!). She also kept on reminding me and her dad about recital day, and made sure she invited the people dear to her to watch.
Recital day came, and we were in full force to support our little ballerina! They danced two musical numbers, and sharing with you one of them here. Click this link.
We are so proud of our little ballerina!
So, do we continue? Yes, we will, but probably delay it for a couple months since we are starting Grade 1 already and we will homeschool (yes, another post!).
It was one fulfilling summer for her. And for us parents, too.
This is a familiar line to our generation. A local television noontime show has this motto-memorization, er, mini-beauty pageant for little girls giving nuggets of wisdom as they introduce themselves.
Words are wisdom, and these are compiled in one book called Philippine Proverbs.
National Book Development Board head, Ms. Neni Sta. Romana-Cruz chose 105 proverbs from a bigger selection from master folklorist Dr. Damiana Eugenio, who compiled various folk literature that includes stories, legends, myths, folk songs, among others. The proverbs come in about 20 Philippine dialects, and translated to English for commonality.
It is an easy read, and I try to savour the language, especially those unfamiliar to my ears (well, eyes, in this case). I actually read them aloud then read the English translation. Some dialects would have similar sayings to English, some cross dialects, that one can be found in several different regional groups.
The book was launched in a very intimate (but filled to the brim) venue last March 15. Friends, family, fans, and mommy bloggers (like I am) were in attendance. It was an afternoon of local Filipino kakanin, quick Proverbs Bingo game, and a small skit of a couple who spew proverbs while fighting, (which made some of us panic a bit–the elder lady beside me was one).
We were able to have our copies sign by the author herself, along with the illustrator, Eisen Bernardo. His lively drawings and vivid colours made the book easy to the eyes.
And since there were other books on sale (some by the author herself too), I got a couple for my husband and kid, which I had signed as well by Ms. Neni.
Thank you, Tahanan Books, for inviting us to this launch.
“Ang gamot sa kalimot ay paalala.”
“Bukas, kwento na lang ang lahat.”
“Time is gold.”
These are but a few of the sayings I carry to heart all the time.
Just like in an autograph book in high school, what is your motto?
Welcome to another #KoristaAko post. Just to get things more fun, I have an exciting raffle at the end of this post, so read on.
I still can’t figure out how adult colouring books came into mainstream here in our country. It was all of a sudden and your local bookstore shelves are filled with books and colored pens and pencils. You thought it’s for kids only? Well, think again!
A few weeks back, I had the privilege of meeting a new korista in one of the choirs in our church. And what a surprise, he is also a young artist who launched his own colouring book! Yup, and he is gracious to give Touringkitty and Korista Ako readers a chance to get their own copy, for free!
What’s even surprising is he introduced himself to me as one of the young members of the Chiang Kai Shek Children’s Choir whom I was able to give a workshop to at the CCP Hands-On Choral Workshop back in 2006. Let’s get to know him more in this Korista Ako post:
Name: Jimmy E. Chung
Current profession: Freelance singer and artist. He won various awards in drawing competitions inside and outside the country. “KALINGA,” my first paperclay art was exhibited in Resorts World Manila and Manila Ocean Park last august 2015. Also he is a private art teacher since 2009.
Choirs joined: Chiang Kai Shek Youth Choir (2000-2010) under Ms. Irma Tan Su. Currently under the Serenata Vocal Ensemble which sings at the Shrine of Jesus every Sunday afternoon.
Why did you join the choir?: I joined choir because since I was a kid, I love to sing and making music, I even compose songs with weird lyrics. But my childhood friends loved the song. They asked me to write the lyrics in a paper so they can also memorize. I always end up laughing when I remember that song.
What was that something or someone that influenced you?: When I was a kid, my mom always watch choir concerts in VHS and betamax. I always watched with her.
What is your favourite song arranged or composed for choir and why?: Ambo hato (arranged by Augusto Espino) is one of my favorite because it is so fun and challenging to sing. There are lots of variety within the song.
What was the hardest piece you’ve studied?: Awit ni Solomon. Its a 16 voice song. We used it for our competition in Thailand’s Voyage of Songs.
Any choir/s or vocal ensembles you look up to and why?: Of course none other than the Philippine Madrigal Singers! They create magic.
What is your most unforgettable choral moment?: When we joined the Voyage of Songs Choir Competition in Pattaya, Thailand and we won the Most Promising Choir award. #KoristaAko dahil: Habang buhay ako aawit! Hinding hindi ko ipagpapalit ang musika sa kahit na anung bagay. Ito ay mananatiling nakaukit sa aking puso…magpakailanman.
Thank you for your generous answers, Jimmy!
And as promised, here’s a RAFFLE for you, coloring enthusiasts!
Jimmy recently launched this book called “Food for the Soul.” He graciously gave one to me to raffle off for Touringkitty readers. So, here’s your chance! He’s releasing a new one in the coming weeks, can’t wait to see that!
I have started one page, but have not done coloring! I will update as soon as I’m done with it.
Food for the Soul is an adult coloring book inspired by touching and motivational bible verses. Feel HIS presence and love as you bring life and color to each page. The book aims to transform our soul to be closer to HIM. Be inspired while coloring!
Win one through this raffle! Join through the widget below, or visit my Facebook page