Virgin Labfest announces its harvest

The Virgin Labfest is an annual festival of untried, untested, unstaged and unpublished plays.

Now on its tenth year, the Virgin Labfest has earned a solid reputation for its exciting and provocative line-up of one-act plays from playwrights both young and old. In addition to the main features, there are three staged readings and a Fellowship program.

For the festival schedule and synopsis of the plays, visit this link:

Panawagan para sa nominasyon sa Gawad Dangal ng Wikang Filipino 2014

Saludo ang Komisyon sa Wikang Filipino sa mga Bayani ng Wikang Pambansa!  Binubuksan na ang panawagan para sa Nominasyon sa Gawad Dangal ng Wikang Filipino 2014.

Bukás na ang nominasyon para sa lahat ng indibidwal, samahan, tanggapan, o institusyon, at mga ahensiyang pampamahalaan o pribado na may natatanging ambag o nagawa tungo sa pagsulong, paglaganap, pagyabong, at preserbasyon ng wikang Filipino.

Magbasa ng higit pa:


UP Diliman to host conference-workshop on education and K+12

The Language, Culture, Multiculturalism, Multilingual Education, and the K+12 Curriculum: Trends, Issues, Challenges, Practices: An International Conference-Workshop will be held on November 20-22, 2014, at the University of the Philippines-Diliman, Quezon City, Philippines.Keynote speaker will be Dr. Gwang-Jo Kim, UNESCO Director of Asia and the Pacific.

This International Conference is a joint collaboration among three leading Filipino language Institues of the Philippines (Department of Filipino and Philippine Literature, University of the Philippines-Diliman; Department of Filipino, De La Salle University-Manila; and Department of Filipino, University of Santo Tomas), in partnership with the Guro Formation Forum (GFF) with the support of the Department of Education and Commission on Higher Education.

For inquiries, please contact UP Department of Filipino and Philippine Literature at (+632) 924-4899 loc. 2123 (look for Ms. Susan Alcantara).


Call for submissions to Kritika Kultura Literary Section, Issue 24

Kritika Kultura is now accepting contributions to its literary section, for possible inclusion in the February 2015 issue. Writers may submit any one of the following for consideration:

1.    Suite of 3-5 poems or a long poem
2.    Short story
3.    Excerpt from a novel (please include a brief overview of the novel’s project)
4.    Essay
5.    Work of translation (please secure the permission of the author whose work you are translating, and include a brief introduction explaining your process of translation)
6.    Hybrid work that can be accommodated within the journal’s .pdf format

Works in Filipino, regional, and other languages must be accompanied by an English translation.

Submission Guidelines

Please e-mail your original and unpublished contribution to the literary section of Kritika Kultura to (cc: Simultaneous submission is accepted, but Kritika Kultura must be notified immediately if the work is accepted or published elsewhere. For both the subject heading of the email and the filename of the submission, please use your last name and the genre-label of the work (for instance, dela Cruz_Poetry). Email your submission as a file attachment (.docx and/or .pdf format); please do not indicate your name within the pages of the attachment. As an in-line text in your email, include a brief bio-note (100 to 150 words), as well as your institutional affiliation and professional e-mail address. All contributions must be submitted on or before August 31, 2014. Please give the journal a response time of four months after the deadline before you inquire about the status of your submission. 

Kritika Kultura is a refereed electronic journal of literary, cultural, and language studies, based in the Department of English, Ateneo de Manila University and accessible at It is indexed in the MLA International Bibliography, Thomson Reuters (formerly ISI), and other major databases. For further details regarding editorial policy, please refer to the website of the journal.

DLSU to host lecture by Sharon Delmendo

The De La Salle University Bienvenido N. Santos Creative Writing Center and Literature Department cordially invite the public to “In Time of Need, an Open Door: Holocaust Rescue in the Philippines,” a lecture by Dr. Sharon Delmendo, on June 5, 2014 (Thursday), 6:00 – 8:00 pm, European Documentation Centre, 13th Floor Henry Sy Sr. Hall, De La Salle University, Manila, Philippines.

One of World War II’s unsung stories is that of the Philippine haven for European Jews fleeing the Holocaust.  During the late 1930s, when doors all over the world—including in the US—were firmly shut to European Jews making the painful decision to leave their homelands to flee Nazi persecution, the Philippines was one of the few countries willing to take in large numbers of refugees.  A small network of people—Jews, Catholics and Protestants, Filipinos and Americans—combined forces and exploited the unique political construction of the Philippine Commonwealth to secure sanctuary to over 1,300 European Jews who collectively became known as the Manilaners.  That, it itself, is a story that needs telling.  There is, however, a much larger story that needs to be told:  Commonwealth President Manuel Quezon, with his Filipino and American associates, tried to save hundreds of thousands of European Jews.  Indeed, President Quezon declared that he would welcome up to one million Jews to settle in the Philippines, proposing ambitious refugee resettlements in Mindanao and Polillo.  When one considers the Holocaust’s infamous death toll of six million, Quezon’s ambitious generosity in offering to take in one million Jewish refugees is astounding.  That only some 1,300 Jewish refugees made it to the Philippines is a story entangled in Philippine-American imperialism, anti-Semitism, and government-sponsored obstructionism.  This is a tapestry of titanic political forces interwoven with fascinating individual and family stories.

Sharon Delmendo is a Professor of English at St. John Fisher College, Rochester, NY, where she specializes in American literature, multiculturalism, and film analysis.  She did much of the research for her first book, The Star-Entangled Banner:  One Hundred Years of America in the Philippines in 1995-96 as the Fulbright Professor of American Studies at De La Salle University in Manila.  She is writing a history of the Manilaners, In Time of Need, an Open Door:  Holocaust Rescue in the Philippines, as well as serving as the Co-Producer and Humanities Scholar of the documentary film on the subject. In addition, she is completing Pacific Theater:  Reel War in the Philippines 1939-1950, an analysis of Hollywood-produced WWII films set in the Philippines made while the war was on-going and setting the films in their military and political context of Philippine-American relations during the Commonwealth era. 

RSVP BNSCWC, (632) 5244611 local 233; Literature (632) 5244611 local 541


2014 Ramon Magsaysay Youth Essay Competition now open

Calling all young Filipinos aged 15 to 24, you are all invited to join the 2014 Ramon Magsaysay Youth Essay Competition (RMYEC). This year’s essay theme is “My Favorite Ramon Magsaysay Awardee: Servant Leadership Qualities That Inspire Me.”

The essay writing competition is part of the Ramon Magsaysay Award Foundation’s effort to inspire the youth with living Asian heroes of change, and to encourage them to demonstrate the same kind of servant leadership manifested by President Ramon Magsaysay and the Magsaysay laureates.

Winners for each competition level will be announced at an appropriate awarding ceremony; they will also receive IT prizes (laptops, smartphones, and tablets) and have the special privilege of interacting with this year’s Ramon Magsaysay Awardees.

Read more:

Scifi and fantasy take centerstage in NexCon Manila

End your summer with the biggest genre event of the year!

Dubbed NexCon Manila, it is the ultimate celebration of all things science fiction and fantasy where fans can meet some of today’s important names in genre entertainment, and party while they’re at it!

The event happens on May 31 to June 1, 2014 at the Bayanihan Center in Pasig City. It will run from 11AM to 9PM, and will be filled to the brim with exciting activities that will thrill Pinoy genre fans.

The biggest activities are the various panel events featuring some of today’s biggest names in Pinoy genre entertainment: international comic book superstar Leinil Yu (AvengersSuperman: Birthright), and filmmakers Erik Matti (Tiktik: The Aswang ChroniclesOn The Job), Louie Suarez (RPG: Metanoia), and John Wong (editor, Zsa Zsa Zaturnnah, White Lady). Other guests include horror and fantasy authors Karl de Mesa, Yvette Tan, Joseph Nacino, and Carljoe Javier; and Pinoy cartoonists like komiksveteran Danny Acuña, Andrew Villar, and Lyndon Gregorio.

Another major event is GeekFight! Battle Royale, where genre fans can test their knowledge of sci-fi and fantasy trivia and slug it out with other triviaheads to be declared Geeks Supreme. The contest happens on May 31, and is organized by the people behind the hit bar game series GeekFight!

Cosplay is an important part of Nexcon Manila, which has two events for costuming enthusiasts:Cosplay Rumble and Cosplay MasqueradeCosplay Rumble is a Western-format cosplay contest spotlighting characters from Western and Filipino comic books, TV series, video games, and everything in between; awards will be given to Best in Show, Hero of Heroes, Villain Most Vile, Stupendous Sidekick, Extraordinary League (for group cosplay) and more! Cosplay Masquerade, on the other hand, is a free-form cosplay contest where secret judges positioned all over the venue can determine the winners; all a cosplayer has to do is show up and be in character!

Closing the event with a big bang is NexCon ROCKS!, a rock show of mindbending proportions featuring the rousing music of indie rock bands Peso Movement (featuring former Rivermaya member Japs Sergio and guitarist Francis Reyes, formerly of The Dawn), dance-rock outfit Paranoid City, and Stereodeal.

All these and more happen at NexCon Manila! Ticket prices are set at P150 (Bronze Pass) for the Dealers’ Hall and public access areas, P500 (Silver Pass) for a one-day access to the entire event, and P999 (Gold Pass) for two-day access to the entire event. First 200 people to purchase a Gold Pass get to receive exclusive NexCon shirts. Tickets can be purchased at all SM Cinemas and SM Tickets branches all over the country. Those who wish to watch NexCon Rocks! separately (P150 only) can purchase tickets at the venue. Bronze and Silver ticketholders can upgrade to watch NexCon ROCKS for only P100. Gold ticketholders watch NexCon Rocks for free.

The event is is produced by Cosplay.PH in partnership with Stompworks. is behind the highly successful Cosplay Mania events in Manila, while Stompworks is a media solutions company specializing in television and video productions. The event is also brought to you by Content and Media Partners Warner Bros. Philippines, Magnavision, and Cinema One; Official Regional Media Partners AXN and Animax; and Fun-O, Nissin Yakisoba, Visprint, Flipgeeks,,, SM Cinema, SM Tickets, Snack Time, Digipost, GeekFight!, the Philippine Outpost of the 501st Legion, and NexCon Rocks! equipment provider Lyric.

Check out for more details.


Call for papers to the International Conference-Workshop on Mother-Tongue and National Language in the K TO 12 Curricular Enhancement as Framework for Development

The Departments of Filipino of the University of the Philippines (UP) Diliman and De La Salle University (DLSU) will conduct the International Conference-Workshop on Mother-Tongue and National Language in the K to 12 Curricular Enhancement as Framework for Development with the theme Multilingual/Multicultural Education in a Global World: Theories, Methods, Challenges and Best Practices from November 20 to 22, 2014.

The Activity aims to bind together those teaching Filipino and other regional languages within and outside the country.

The topics to be discussed are the following:

  1. National Language;
  2. Multilingualism/Multiculturalism;
  3. Multilingual (Multicultural) Education;
  4. Mother Tongue Based and Multilingual Education (MTB-MLE); and
  5. K to 12 Curriculum.

The teachers of Filipino from both public and private elementary and secondary schools are the target participants to these activities.

Participation of both public and private schools shall be subject to the nodisruption- of-classes policy as stipulated in DepEd Order No. 9, s. 2005 entitled Instituting Measures to Increase Engaged Time-on-Task and Ensuring Compliance Therewith.

More information may be inquired from any of the following:

  • Ma. Crisanta N. Flores, Ph.D. 
    Conference Director
    International Conference of Language
  • Prof. Aura A. Abiera 
    Department of Filipino and Philippine Literature 
    University of the Philippines (UP) Diliman, Quezon City
  • Dr. Josefina Mangahis 
    Department of Filipino 
    De La Salle University (DLSU), Taft Avenue, Manila 
    Telefax Nos.: (02) 924-4899; (02) 524-4611 local 509

Here is the downloadable form of DepEd advisory.

Gemino H. Abad to lecture at Silliman

​For poet, fictionist, literary critic, and anthologist Gemino H. Abad, the literary work is literary because it is both work of language and work of imagination: it isn’t so much written in a given historical language as wrought from it. For the writer, language isn’t a given, it is forged: rewoven, reinvented, made anew. The meanings of our words arise not so much from their differential play as from lives lived through a people’s history and culture. The writer works the language so as to endow a perceived reality with a form by which it is apprehended. That perceived reality is of course a human experience which basically is the subject of a literary work. That experience is mimed or simulated in the poem, story, play, or the personal essay.As to literary “criticism,” the word comes from Greek krinein, “to divide (or discriminate) and to judge,” from which the English words, “crisis” and “critical,” are derived. Thus, a time of crisis is a time of division and judgment, and to criticize is to bring matters to a head, to a point of crisis. “Theory” is also from Greek theorein, “to view, inspect, consider”; any theory then is only a way of seeing, of making sense. Even in science, any way of looking has its limits and, as to its currency, a certain life-span. No theory has monopoly of seeing. For any literary work, whatever its paksa (Tagalog: topic, subject, theme), there are only three general criteria: in Tagalog, saysay (significance, insight, revelation) dating (or effect, Greek dynamis: power to persuade and to move)and diwa (core substance or spirit, vision, meaningfulness). General criteria, for they vary in their appreciation and application, from reader to reader, because every reader or critic draws from his own experience of reality, from his own preferred “theory” or “way of looking,” from his current advocacy, be that Marxist or feminist; and, whether consciously or not, every reader or critic also draws from his community’s history and culture, their world view, values, beliefs, and biases. 

​Gemino H. Abad is University Professor emeritus of literature and creative writing at the University of the Philippines. In 2009 he received Italy’s Premio Feronia for his poetry translated into Italian by Gëzim Hajdari and Amoà Fatuiva under the title, Dove le parole non si spezzano (Where No Words Break).

He has to date thirty books to his name. Care of Light (2010) is his eighth poetry collection, and Imagination’s Way (2010), his eighth collection of critical essays; he also has two collections of short stories, Orion’s Belt (1996) and A Makeshift Sun (2001). He is known also for his three-volume historical anthology of Filipino poetry in English: Man of Earth (co-ed., Edna Zapanta Manlapaz; 1989), A Native Clearing (sole editor, 1993), and A Habit of Shores (sole editor, 1999). He has recently finished his six-volume anthology of Philippine short stories in English over the period 1956 to 2008: the first two-volume set is called Upon Our Own Ground (2008); the second set, Underground Spirit (2010); and the third, Hoard of Thunder (2012). Dr. Abad obtained his Ph.D. in English at the University of Chicago in 1970, and continues to teach at UP where he has served as Secretary of the University, Vice-President for Academic Affairs, and Director of the U.P. Creative Writing Center (now an Institute).

The lecture is introduced by Ronelaine Picardal. For more information, please contact Moses Joshua Atega, Ronelaine Picardal, and Hellene Piñero. Prof. Philip Van Peel moderates.

​This is part of a series of literary events of the 53rd Silliman University National Writers Workshop, ​and ​is open for free to the public.

Silliman University National Writers Workshop celebrates with The Word is Alive

The Word is Alive ​celebrates poetry in all its incarnations, including spoken word poetry and performance poetry. It also features a snippet of the Dumaguete indie music scene. It features readings by Bron Teves, Razceljan Salvarita, Mae Young, Susan S. ​Lara, Elle Divine, Simon Alvarez, Marjorie Evasco, Grace Monte de Ramos, Christian Renz Torres, Nino de Veyra, John Bengan, Gemino​ H.​ Abad​, Jessica Moldez, Cesar Ruiz Aquino, and Alfred Yuson. ​

It also features music by J Marie Maxino, Anna Katrina Espino, Andrew Alvarez, and Toby Alonzo.​

The poetry night is co-​hosted by​ fellows​ Jose Jason Chancoco and Daniel Olivan Jr. The ​​reading, part of a series of literary events of the 53rd Silliman University National Writers Workshop, is open for free to the public.