Archive for the ‘Music and Arts’ Category
Wednesday, January 5th, 2011
Xavier University-Ateneo de Cagayan, like all the other Ateneos in the Philippines, prides itself in producing “men and women for others”. When it was established in 1933 as Ateneo de Cagayan, it already stressed the importance of exposing its students to different sectors and the community. Today, XU continues to be of service to others as its students now have more venues and programs that expose them to the community.
One of these venues is the Xavier Center for Culture and the Arts (XCCA), which is headed by Hobart P. Savior.
The XCCA is XU’s venue or platform for its culture and arts programs. Its main purpose is to serve as some sort of a bridge for social outreach and formation programs, its students and the whole XU community. It conceptualizes and implements different programs that cross different sectors. XCCA’s programs include:
- Museo de Oro (art exhibits, research and training, Ethnographic and Archeological exhibit and archive, summer arts workshops, outreach and education and new media arts)
- Music Program
- Artistic Excellence and Production, including performing arts and visual arts
- Culture and Development
- Cultural Education
- Culture and Arts: Research, Documentation and Publication; Support Service Program
XCCA’s cultural season begins in June and ends in May of the following year. Last year, from June to December, the XCCA came up with a number of interesting activities like arts exhibits by local artists, film festivals, a playwriting workshop, a photography exhibit and Cinemagis 4 among others. For the rest of the 2010-2011 cultural season, XCCA’s schedule is as follows:
January 26 to 29:
Cinemagis: 3rd Northern Mindanao Digital Short Film Festival
Panaghugpong 3 (A Xavier Arts Festival featuring Wilfrido Ma. Guerrero’s Ulirang Tahanan,
a Cagayan Song Festival, Kulturock 3 and Xavier Spanish Dance Festival)
1st Cagayan de Oro Mono Drama Festival (in celebration of World Theater Day)
Sining sa Tag-Araw (featuring summer art workshops and Museology and Archeology workshops)
May 6 to 7:
Sining Kambayoka’s Usa Ka Damgo (a Mindanao set of Shakespeare’s A Midsummer Night’s Dream)
Kabuwadan 3 (International Museum Day and National Heritage Month celebrations)
Given all these interesting and exciting activities, XU’s students have all the reason in the world to smile from ear-to-ear; they have the best of different worlds!
If you want to experience XCCA’s cultural offerings, all you need to do is contact them through (088) 8583116 local 2059. Visiting their office at the XU Corrales Avenue campus is also a good idea. If XCCA Director Hobart Savior is not around, there’ll always be somebody willing to help you out with whatever you need. You may also want to visit Museo de Oro and look for museum curator Dr. Erlinda M. Burton.
You may also want to check out the XCCA page on the XU website.
Xavier University has long been doing its share in uplifting the culture and arts community of Cagayan de Oro. It is about time we Kagay-anons take heed and join the thousands of Ateneans in supporting XCCA’s worthwhile programs.
-by Maia Fortich-Poblete-
Wednesday, November 24th, 2010
The Christmas season is never complete if we don’t hear the familiar Christmas songs and medleys over the radios, in malls and at home. When these songs and music start hitting the airwaves, we know that the Christmas season is indeed near.
Here is a list of the Top 10 Christmas albums of all time compiled by Chart Watch. The rankings are based on the shipments and sales records of Nielsen/SoundScan and RIAA (Recording Industry Association of America).
TOP 1: “Elvis’s Christmas Album” by Elvis Presley
The King of Rock and Roll is still undefeated and immovable from his throne. With this chart topping album that is still sold in music stores today, the success of this album is testament to Elvis’ primary accomplishment: creating music that transcends time and popular culture from one generation to the next. It contains the popular tracks, Peace in the Valley, I’ll be Home for Christmas and White Christmas.
TOP 2: “Miracles – The Holiday Album” by Kenny G.
This was the very first Christmas album by the great Kenny G. This album remains to be a favorite all over the world during the holiday season. Its popular tracks are Brahms Lullaby and the traditional Silent Night and Winter Wonderland. The sax music creates the perfect mood and ambience for an enjoyable Christmas dinner with family and friends.
TOP 3: “A Fresh Aire Christmas” by Manheim Steamroller (1988)
Top 4: “Manheim Steamroller Christmas” by Manheim Stearoller (1984)
Manheim Steamroller is the only artist/group with two albums in this list. This music group is best known for their Christmas albums. Their tracks are commonly remakes of the classic Christmas songs and carols. Manheim Steamroller infused these old favorites with modern contemporary music. Their Christmas songs are now among the most requested on the radio.
TOP 5: “These Are Special Times” by Celine Dion (1998)
This was Celine Dion’s first Christmas album recorded in English (Dion is Canadian and frequently records French songs), and it was released in select European countries in 2007. Among the popular tracks in this album is a duet with R&B singer R. Kelly for I’m Your Angel. It contains Celine’s renditions of popular carols, hymns and religious songs.
TOP 6: “A Christmas Album” by Barbra Streisand (1967)
Like most of the albums that made it in this list of top Christmas albums of all time, this is also Barbra Streisand’s first Christmas album. It spent five consecutive weeks at the number 1 spot in 1967 and later earned a five-time platinum award. Its popular tracks include Sleep In Heavenly Peace (Silent Night) and Jingle Bells.
TOP 7: “Merry Christmas” by Johnny Mathis (1958)
Johnny Mathis is a popular romantic jazz and pop singer and, once again, this album was his first Christmas offering. The album is mostly composed of long-time favorites like I’ll Be Home For Christmas, What Child Is This?, The First Noel and White Christmas.
TOP 8: “Merry Christmas” by Mariah Carey (1994)
This is the most modern and contemporary album in the list. Mariah Carey’s versions of the old, popular Christmas songs like All I Want For Christmas Is You (an original that has become a holiday classic), Joy To The World, O Holy Night and Hark! The Herald Angels Sing/Gloria in Excelsis Deo. These songs are favorites not only in the US airwaves but also abroad. The album was met with high praises from critics and fans alike.
The album has sold more than 12 million copies worldwide. This year, Carey released her second Christmas album, Merry Christmas II You.
TOP 9: “Noel” by Josh Groban (2007)
After its release in October, the album was certified quintuple platinum in December – a very impressive feat that made “Noel” the best-selling album in 2007. The charming songwriter and singer collaborated with Faith Hill, Brian McKnight, Andy McKee, Gigi Hadid and the Mormon Tabernacle Choir in five of the album’s tracks.
TOP 10: “A Very Special Christmas” by various artists (1987)
This the first of a series of Christmas albums containing compilations of songs sung by Madonna, Whitney Houston, U2, Bon Jovi, Stevie Nicks, No Doubt and Bruce Springsteen. The seventh edition of “A Very Special Christmas” was released in 2009. Still, the 1987 album remains to be the topselling in the series.
For this year’s topselling Christmas albums from Billboard 200, click this link.
-Jay Daphne Bual-
Monday, November 15th, 2010
Last September 30th, I was given tickets to watch the first set of Cine Europa 13 films. As an avid lover of movies, particularly foreign ones, this was a chance for me to get to know a bit of the European culture through the medium and the event.
Made possible by the European Union, Cine Europa aims to present and educate viewers about each entry’s national background and culture. For more than a decade, it has been running successfully, screening films across the world for moviegoers to witness the artistic and creative side of that part of the continent.
In the Philippines, Cagayan de Oro has been chosen for the third consecutive time as the venue for the screenings. The affair was held at Rodelsa Hall, a world class concert hall/theater operated by Liceo de Cagayan University.
It was my first time to experience the film festival, and I was eager to know which European entries would make my experience worthwhile. The list of movies screening that day were Finland’s “Forbidden Fruit” at 10am; Bulgaria’s “The World is Big and Salvation Lurks Around the Corner” at 1pm; Spain’s “Mad Love” at 4pm; Belgium’s “The Barons” at 7:30pm and UK’s “An Education” at 10pm. (Unfortunately, I had important appointments to attend to at particular hours, so I was only able to watch three films out of the five. I was thankful enough that I had time, though not much, to be at the Hall.)
Here’s a summary of the movies I saw and my insights about each of them:
Forbidden Fruit (Finland)
Kielletty Hedelmä (Forbidden Fruit) was on at 10am. It was a story of two teenage conservative Laestadian girls (Raakel and Maria) who headed out to the city of Helsinki, the capital of Finland, for the summer and experience, for the first time, freedom from their restrictive faith and community.
The message of the piece is universal. There are those in other religions or communities who want to not really go against tradition, but to believe that there is also something good beyond the restrictions of such practices. For two girls who were beginning to feel the need to be intimate with the opposite sex, it was difficult to break free from the control it had over their lives. In the end, the community lost one of its faithful followers who set off to see the world with her own eyes, and not from someone who deems it evil.
Mad Love (Spain)
Also known as Juana La Loca, the movie tells the story of Queen Joanna, the sovereign who was said to be frantic and obsessed with her husband, Philip I (the Handsome/Fair), King of Castile and Leon and the Duke of Burgundy. The plot follows her fate; from her marriage, to her fixated love for the King, who was unfaithful to her, and to her fall and exile.
To some certain extent, love can trigger a fanatical state, especially when threatened with the fear of abandonment and loss. Now fueled by fears, the desire to love and be loved becomes stronger that the lover would defend such fervor even in death. This was what happened to the Queen of Castile. She put all things aside, even her kingdom, to focus her efforts on winning the king’s affection when their marriage began to fall apart. That led to her demise as well, as her kingdom collapsed. Due to her failures as the monarch and the supposed “madness” she developed, she was banished to live alone without the power to rule, yet was able to keep her title as queen. As a result of this, she was nicknamed “Joanna the Mad.”
The Barons (Belgium)
Les Barons is a feel-good, clever film about three friends (Aziz, Mounir and Hassan) of Arab descent who call themselves The Barons. On a daily basis, they waste their time slacking off and living and treasuring each moment without taking too much responsibility for their reckless feats.
It’s always a blast when you’re hanging out with your friends all day, while caring less about what’s happening to rest of the world. Yet, when the time comes to grow up, without question, you just act on it. In their own way, Hassan, Aziz and Mounir manned up and became the sensible men that they should be. Sure, there will always be conflicts between friendships, but it is the resolution of those disagreements that really matter. Their end actions were what made them “barons,” persons of great influence and power. However, to become a true Baron like these guys, you may need to know how to do the “Happy Antelope.”
All in all, I enjoyed the selection of films I was able to watch that Thursday, especially Les Barons and Forbidden Fruit, despite not going back to watch more movies the next day until Sunday, due to conflicts of my tight work and personal schedules. I found both films striking and moving, as well as well-written and well-projected to film.
If Cine Europa were to hold the event in Cagayan de Oro next year, surely, I will be there. I would have to set aside work and personal errands for four days just to make way for this film fete, that is, if it’s even possible. Yet I’m hopeful that it could happen.
-Rose Anne Quirante-
Thursday, November 4th, 2010
The last time a famous comedy personality rocked the roofs of Limketkai Atrium was way back in April with Vice Ganda’s “May Nagtext!” concert. It’s high time that Kagay-anons get another dose of stomach-clenching laughs and an evening of good fun, don’t you think?
Well, we are getting just that and more! On December 19, 2010, CDO and Limketkai Mall will play host to a back-to-back concert of two of the most popular artists in their respective fields.
Joey Peláez Events Production is proud to present The Crooner and The Comedienne, a concert of crooner Richard Poon and the ever-hilarious comedienne Pokwang. Adding excitement for CDO’s young ladies is the special participation of Pilipinas Got Talent Finalist Markki Stroem.
Pokwang, the Exotic Beauty
This sexy, award winning comedienne, impersonator, host and actress is considered by many as the best of her generation.
Pokwang, or Marietta Subong in real life, first entered local showbiz in the reality search for comedians in ABS-CBN’s now defunct Yes Yes Show!. She later appeared in various TV shows and movies, finally becoming a household name as one of the hosts of the controversial and defunct noontime show Wowowee.
Before becoming a celebrity, Pokwang worked overseas as a professional entertainer. Her bittersweet life story (she had a son who died of brain cancer while she was working in Abu Dhabi) was featured in the award winning drama anthology Maalaala Mo Kaya. Despite of all the trials in her life, Pokwang remains happy and funny; and these help her finally become one of the most respected comedians in the country.
Richard, the Charming Crooner
The Philippines’ Big Band Crooner used to be a vocalist in the band U-Turn. Despite not having a formal training in singing and music, he now has a very successful solo career. This charming chinito caught everyone’s attention (especially the ladies) when he serenaded the contestants of the Miss Earth Pageant back in 2007.
At present, Richard is one of the most popular male singers in the country. He is also a member of ASAP XV’s “Sessionistas”. Unlike most male singers, Richard did not do alternative, rock, novelty songs, or even project a hunky image. His music is a fresh remake of the songs of Frank Sinatra, Jose Marie Chan and the like. He sings jazz songs the best, although he can also pull off unique and new renditions of pop songs by Justin Bieber, Rihanna, Sean Kingston and even those of the late King of Pop, Micheal Jackson’s. In fact, one of his most memorable numbers on ASAP is MJ’s Man in the Mirror.
With a comedienne and two singers on board, Kagay-anons can expect a night of laughter and beautiful music. Pokwang and Richard have long proven themselves to be flexible when it comes to mixing hosting, singing and comedy skits.
This is the first concert that brings Pokwang and Richard together. Knowing Pokwang and her antics with Rico J. Puno in the noontime show Pilipinas Win na Win!, she is bound to make funny comments about a blossoming romance with the charming Richard Poon!
The concert will be at the Atrium of Limketkai Center at 7:30pm. For ticket inquiries, send an email to firstname.lastname@example.org, or call the following contact numbers: (088)858-4444 / 09154519429 / 09154988941.
See you there!
-Jay Daphne Bual-
See you there!
Thursday, October 28th, 2010
The number of digital photography studios and aspiring photographers in Cagayan de Oro continue to grow, as photography is becoming a popular trend among the younger crowd. Schools that offer Development Communications courses also have photography classes, which in turn make students more interested in the art. Moreover, DSLRs, or digital single-lens reflex cameras, have become more in demand.
Although it may only be a trend for now, the art of photography has been present in the Philippines for centuries. In fact, the ones who pioneered the art in the country were the Westerners coming from Europe.
The practice of photo taking and the initial opening of a studio in the country, sometime in the 1800s, aimed to deliver information and news about the colony and were meant to be tools for tourism, anthropology and historical documentation. This practice, which has evolved since then, would not have been adapted by the Filipinos if it were not for the Western influences during the Spanish regime.
As people started to adapt a modern lifestyle, digital gadgets became important and digital photography, which is a digital version of basic film photography, came to be. Kagay-anons likewise adapted to that change and dependence in high technology.
One of the photographers and photo studios that stand out from the rest is Ansaldo Photography. A creative photography studio established by Ariel L. Ansaldo, it is one of Cagayan de Oro’s prides. Its clients range from different sectors or groups, although majority normally go for their wedding, pre-wedding, debut and pre-debut packages.
Ansaldo is fond of traveling and this developed in him a love for the art of photography. He eventually took formal lessons in digital photography at the Philippine Center for Creative Imaging in 2003. He likewise engaged in advanced workshops with PAL Mabuhay in-flight magazine photographer Jay Alonzo, to further polish his technical ability in lighting.
Although he also has projects in Manila, where he is currently based, his Kagay-anon roots beckoned and Ansaldo Photography was born on August 18th 2008.
Ariel Ansaldo aims for simplicity in his photos. He captures still pictures and moments as they are. He believes they should be left as is and that when everything else has gone, the pictures serve as captured memories.
Ansaldo’s photo studio aims to do two things: to provide its clients with great experience and quality and artistic portraits that will surely be remembered and valued for generations. Aside from its wedding and debut packages, Ansaldo Photography also does baby, child or family portraits.
Located at Tuman Building, along Capistrano and Yacapin streets, Cagayan de Oro, Andsaldo Photography opens from Monday to Saturday, 9am to 10pm. Its email address is email@example.com. You may also call (63)88-3098885 (Bayantel) and (63)88-2316204 (PLDT) for your inquiries. The studio can also be contacted through these mobile phones: 0917-7066262 (Globe) and 0922-8656262 (Sun Cellular). Ansaldo Photography also has a Multiply site.
-Rose Anne Quirante-