Cultural Center of the Philippines (CCP) recently announced its artistic and cultural offerings for 2013 in a special presentation at the CCP Tanghalang Aurelio Tolentino. CCP artistic director Chris B. Millado led the presentation, rolling out the wide variety of programming for 2013 including new musicals and revivals, classic operas, orchestral concerts, indie films and world cinema, arts festivals and competitions, visual art shows, educational events, and digital and multimedia offerings.

The CCP 2013 season, designed to appeal to the broadest audiences, exemplifies the vision of the CCP to make art matter in the life of every Filipino. For 2013, CCP will concentrate on three areas of development: Music Theater, Arts Education and strengthening the CCP’s online presence.

Music theater

The CCP’s thrust on Music Theater is a recognition that the Philippines is brimming with musical theater talent, Millado says.

The CCP’s musical theater program will be comprised of an opera season and a music theater season that not only offers shows but training for music theater talents.

Five original Filipino musicals will delight CCP audiences in 2013. These are: Katy, a revival of the musical based on the life of Bodabil Queen Katy de la Cruz; Ibalong is a new musical inspired by Bicol’s folk epic of the same name, and Stageshow, a reprise of the successful production depicting the vaudeville stars of yesteryear.  Other new musicals will be one for children based on the book Unang Baboy sa Langit and another on the life of Philippine hero Andres Bonifacio. 

Through satellite technology, CCP gives opera lovers their tickets to the Metropolitan Opera productions in high definition video and full dolby sound.  The first Met Opera production to be screened at the CCP in January will be Verdi’s Aida. 

The stars of Philippine musical theater come together in Musical Revue with songs from Broadway, West End and original Filipino works. 

Talents of the Paris-Manila Conservatoire present Jacques Offenbach’s La Vie Parisienne, a light comic operetta portraying aspects of Parisian life.  The Philippine Philharmonic Orchestra provides live music accompaniment.  La Vie Parisienne is a collaboration with the Embassy of France which will be bringing in top opera teachers from Paris to coach upcoming Filipino opera singers.  Some of these local opera performers will be sent to France for a scholarship.

CCP will launch a three-year intensive training in which top professionals from New York will work with Filipino counterparts to upgrade skills in voice, dance and acting for musical theater performance.  This music theater workshop will begin in August 2013.

Festivals galore

CCP mounts seven festivals that will take place at various venues. These are Pasinaya Open House Festival, Cinemalaya Independent Film Festival and Competition, Virgin Labfest, Earth Day Festival, Fiesta Folkloriada, Andrea O. Veneracion International Choral Festival and Ballet Festival. 

Pasinaya, in February, considered the largest multi-arts festival in the country, offers a sneak preview of the CCP 2013 performance season with more than 300 shows and 3,000 artists participating.  Pasinaya in 2013 goes “chinoy” as it focuses on Filipino Chinese arts and culture. 

Cinemalaya, in July, is the popular all-digital indie film festival featuring cutting-edge, new works by emerging and established Filipino filmmakers. 

The CCP Earth Day, in April, celebration is an advocacy for the environment but also a valuable process in building community.  With various civic groups, government agencies and NGOs, and the mass media that share the CCP’s vision for a health and green Mother Earth. 

Virgin Labfest, in June, showcases unpublished and unstaged one-act plays. This yearly playfest is known for its provoking and exciting line-up by works by new and veteran playwrights.

Fiesta Folkloriada, in December brings together folk dance groups from different countries in a showcase of their unique dance traditions. 

The Andrea O. Veneracion International Choral Festival features a choral competition in the categories of vocal ensemble, chamber choir and folk music.  This is the first edition of the choral festival that celebrates the 50th anniversary of the Philippine Madrigal Singers.  The Festival is named in honor of National Artist for Music, Andrea O. Veneracion, founder of the Madrigals.

The Ballet Festival in November brings the numerous ballets schools and companies to showcase their best students and works.  The festival, titled “Fab!” also pays tribute to choreographer Tony Fabella by featuring his best works. 

Salute to Andres Bonifacio and other heroes

CCP celebrates the 150th birth anniversary of hero Andres Bonifacio with special artistic productions. The Loves of Andres Bonifacio is Ballet Philippines’ study of the hero’s romantic life and peek into the heart of a man who was not just heroic but loving.  A new musical opera on Bonifacio will be mounted by Tanghalang Pilipino. Entitled San Andres B., the musical opera was penned by National Artist Virgilio Almario and depicts the life, love, failures and triumphs of Bonifacio.

Seven individuals and an organization will receive the Gawad CCP Para sa Sining for their outstanding achievements and contributions to Philippine arts and culture on Feb. 27, 2013, 6 p.m. at the CCP Tanghalang Nicanor Abelardo (Main Theater).  The Gawad CCP Para sa Sining is the highest award given by the CCP.  The award will be conferred on Agnes D. Locsin for Dance, Ramon P. Santos for Music; Zeneida A. Amador for Theater; Brenda V. Fajardo for Visual Arts; Rodolfo “Dolphy” Quizon for Film and Broadcast Arts; Florentino H. Hornedo for Cultural Anthropology. The Silliman University National Writers Workshop will receive the Tanging Parangal for Arts Training and Education.

To honor the genius of the late National Artist Salvador Bernal, who designed numerous operas and musicals, a major retrospective of his works — featuring scale models and actual costume pieces — will be held.  This exhibit points a new direction for the CCP in making its Production Design Center a hub for training and education in technical theater and design.

Arts education

The CCP arts education program was jumpstarted early in 2012, Millado says. The CCP resident companies, outreach and touring programs bring shows, exhibits and workshops to places beyond the CCP complex, reaching out to artists and audiences in the regions. CCP airs three radio programs,Diskarte, a radio variety, Wan Dey Isang Araw, a children’s program and Culture Carousel, which is aired on DZFE FM, the only classical music radio station in the country.  CCP is on TV as well, in Maarteh, a tele-magazine on arts and culture.  The CCP arts education program will undertake projects such as arts in the curriculum and art appreciation sessions with public school teachers and students. 

Digital heritage and CCP online

The CCP website at was re-launched recently to strengthen the CCP’s online presence.  The new website enables users to purchase tickets online, easily navigate the site and get updates about the CCP. 

CCP has also started digitizing materials and making these available online. The website also allows users to explore arts and culture content through the online resource called MYCCP. 

Support for the arts

CCP offers the public various ways to support the arts.  CCP offers subscriptions to resident company seasons and the CCP membership scheme.  Supporting the CCP programs will ensure that arts and culture will continue to thrive.

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