Premyo Arejola short-listed entries announced

Three essays, eight short stories, four one-act plays, seven collections of poetry, and two short stories for children have been short-listed for the 8th Premyo Tomas Arejola sa Literaturang Bikolnon (PTALB).

This was recently announced by Carlos A. Arejola, chairman of Bicol’s premiere literary prize.

The short-listed works were chosen by a committee headed by Lorna A. Billanes, Ph.D.  from a field of fifty-one entries from all over the Philippines.   

Short-listed for the one-act play category are: “Karsel” by Mary Karol Fe R. Go of Legazpi City, “An Huring Paraduno” by Niles Jordan Breis of Tabaco City, “Urulay Mag-ilusyon” by Elsie C. Albis of Naga City, and “N da neym ov da Pudra” by Richard Madrilejos of Tabaco City.

Cited for fiction are: “Anino sa Resort” by Irmina Torres of Naga City, “Abo sa Paggabas” by Marvin Davila Aquino of Tinambac, Camarines Sur, “Italbong sa Irarom kan Salog” by Gilmar Baran of Pili, Camarines Sur, “Rawraw”  by Nestor Alagbate of Daet, Camarines Norte, “Scoop” by Juan Escandor Jr. of Gubat, Sorsogon and Naga City, “Bisita” by Shairmaine Zen Manzano of Naga City, “Estudyante” by Michael Florano Sales of Pili, Camarines Sur, and “Basilio”, Jomark M. Baynado of Polanqui, Albay.

The collections of poetry cited this year are: “An mga Buto ni Kuracog” by Emmanuel T. Barrameda of Catanduanes and Imus, Cavite, “Gapo asin Iba pang Rawitdawit” by Elbert Olaso Baeta of Iriga City, “Ampaw asin Iba pang Rawitdawit” by Irvin Parco Sto. Tomas of Canaman, Camarines Sur, “Pano Padabaon an Diyos asin Iba pang Rawitdawit” by Richard Madrilejos of Tabaco City,  “Tag-ok sa Ginobat” by Nestor M. Awa of Iriga City, “Lapridarga Mga Rawitdawit Dapit sa Sakral asin Handal” by Niles Jordan Breis of Tabaco City, and “Mga Kasagkodan” by Jerome Hipolito of Calabanga, Camarines Sur.   

The finalists for the essay category are: “Bako Ako Bikolano” by Richard Madrilejos, “Magurang Ka Man” by Arlan Abanes Alzaga, and “Kun Tano Kami Kadto Nagbabaralon nin Pangudtuhan sa Sinehan” by  Niles Jordan Breis, all of Tabaco City, Albay.

Short-listed for short stories for children are: “Ada Baruga”, a story for children by Jaime Jesus Borlagdan of Tabaco City and “An Apat na Kabalang” a story for children by Irmina V. Torres of Naga City.

The literary prize is named after Tomas Padilla Arejola, a Bicolano patriot, and a leading member of the Propaganda Movement and Malolos Congress.

Winners of the 8th Premyo Arejola will be announced at the Pagrokyaw kan

Pinakamababansay na Obrang Panliteratura 2016, a PTALB ceremony commemorating the Pambansang Buwan ng Panitikan on April 22 in Naga City.

Winners will receive a Diploma of Merit, the Premyo Tomas Arejola Medallion and P5000. A grand prize winner, who will be chosen from the roster of category winners, will receive an additional cash prize of P7, 000 and will be named Parasurat kan Taon (Writer of the Year).    





Bikol adaptation of Trifles to be staged, one hundred years after play’s premiere in 1916

The Bikol adaptation of Susan Glaspell’s Trifles will be staged by Teatro Ragayano this month, one hundred years after the one-act play was first staged in Wharf Theater in Provincetown, Massachusetts.
Hawla, Carlos A. Arejola’s adaptation of the play considered by many as “ahead of its time”, will be staged back-to-back with Gamgam, three monologues by Eilyn Nidea based on Arejola’s Mga Ibon sa Maaraw na Alas-Siyete.     

The twin bill is scheduled for performances at the Multi-Purpose Hall of the Ragay National Agricultural & Fisheries School (RNAFS) on February 22 and 23 and at the Rolando Andaya Hall on February 24. On tour performances at the Ravina Hall of the Central Bicol State University of Agriculture is scheduled on February 28 and at the Pili Sports and Cultural Complex on February 29. 

Also scheduled at the RNAFS Multi-Purpose Hall on February 23 at 3 PM is a round table discussion on the gender issues raised by the two plays. Speakers include the municipal councilor Trixie Clemente Makiling, chair of LGU Ragay education committee; literary historian Lourdes Lobis Nieva, Ph.D.; Atty. Edwina Juri Romanes of the Public Attorney’s Office, a human rights advocate; and Dorren Dulfo Arengue, a gender and development advocate. Playwrights Arejola and Nidea will moderate the discussion, and akin to the 1916 premiere where Glaspell multi-tasked and played one of the female leads, are also directing Hawla and Gamgam, respectively.  

Teatro Ragayano is a community theater group based in the Ragay, Camarines Sur.                  

8th Premyo Tomas Arejola sa Literaturang Bikolnon now accepting entries

The 8th Premyo Tomas Arejola sa Literaturang Bikolnon (PTALB) is seeking  to honor the five most outstanding literary works in the Bikol language for 2016. 

New and unpublished works in the following genres are eligible for the competition: Osipon (fiction), Saysay (essay), Halipot na Pasali na Pan-entablado (one-act play), Rawitdawit (poetry), and Osipon na Pan-aki (story for children). Entries must show literary merit, social significance, and tackling issues relevant to Bikol realities. 

The competition is open to all Bicolano writers, based locally or anywhere in the world, who write in any of the variations of the native languages spoken in the region, including Bisakol (Bisaya-Bikol), Tagalog Ragayanon, and others.  Contestants may  submit only one entry per genre, however.

•    Osipon entries must be at least 10 pages in length but not exceed 15 pages.
•    Saysay entries must be at least 10 pages but must not exceed 15 pages. Informal, personal essays about the Bicolano way of life are preferred.
•    Halipot na Pasali na Pan-entablado must be at least 15 pages or of sufficient length to approximate a performing time of at least thirty minutes.         
•    Rawitdawit entries must consist of at least seven poems but not more than ten poems. 
•    Osipon na Pan-aki entries must be at least 7 pages but must not exceed 10 pages. Entries 
with a plot and narrative suitable for an illustrated storybook of at least 30 pages are preferred.     
All entries must be typewritten, 12-point, Arial font, double-spaced on a letter-sized (8 ½ x 11) bond paper, with 1-inch margins on all sides and page numbers on the bottom-center of each page. 
A one-page literary bio note must accompany each entry.  

Entries must be sent to with the following email subject format: PremyoArejola_<insert genre>_<insert author’s name> (Example: Premyo Arejola_rawitdawit_Juan de la Cruz). Deadline of submission of entries is March 25, 2016.   

The five winning entries will be cited at the Limang Pinakamababansay na Obrang Panliteratura sa Taon 2016, a ceremony commemorating the Pambansang Buwan ng Panitikang Filipino in April 2016. The winners will each receive a Diploma of Merit, the Premyo Tomas Arejola Medallion and P5000. A grand prize winner, who will be chosen from the roster will receive an additional cash prize of P7, 000. and will be named Parasurat kan Taon (Writer of the Year).     

For inquiries, please contact the PTALB Secretariat at the Pintakasi kan Literaturang Bikolnon Facebook Page. 

Sining Banwa opens 5th theatre season with ‘Gymgurls’

To cap Sining Banwa’s fourth year of creative and cultural work in the Bicol Region, and to open its fifth theatre season, the group proudly lifts curtain for their original one-act play ‘Gymgurls’. This will also mark the launching of ‘Sining Banwa EQUALove Project: Equal Rights, Equal Love’ which is a cultural campaign on HIV & AIDS awareness and prevention, an advocacy supported by the Department of Health – Region V (DOH-V) and Albay AIDS Council.

For quite a while, Sining Banwa was able to produce and perform plays on different issues and advocacies. During performances in schools, churches, communities, and other public spaces, they saw the power of theatre in touching the heart and enlightening the mind. Same methodology to inform, educate and mobilize communities will be used on this cause.

‘Gymgurls’ discourses both issues surrounding HIV & AIDS and the LGBT community. It strongly supports the call for understanding the condition and eliminating condemnation of people living with HIV. Likewise, it is an appeal for equality and inclusivity amid diverse gender or sexual preference.

The play is set in a fictional fitness center called “The Gym” specifically intended for people living with HIV who are enrolled in a six-month recuperation program. Lights open one morning when characters are compelled to make decision of leaving or staying at The Gym. JK is the fitness instructor tasked of maintaining fitness and ‘peace’ at the gym while the four clients’ colorful lives and challenging personalities unfold. Max is a straight male who was supposed to finish his engineering degree when diagnosed with HIV. Teri experienced the worst odds in life before making decision of enrolling at The Gym to accept fate but to no avail. Sherry is the laughing stock who is also excellent at cracking jokes to hide inner fear, while Noel is a religious person who knows almost all the saints in the world. ‘Gymgurls’ is a one-hour play that is treated with minimalist production design but requires complicated acting skills. In a bell sound which signals shift of realities, actors will also be shifting from one character to another which makes acting tasks denser and more challenging.

Before going on tour to different communities,  ‘Gymgurls’ will have the initial run at the BUCAL Amphitheater, Bicol University, Legazpi City on the following dates:

Thursday, August 13 – 2:30pm, 6:00pm
Friday, August 14 – 10:00am, 2:00pm; Gala Show: 6:00pm
Saturday, August 15 – 10:00am

Admission tickets are sold at P50.00 for regular audience and P25.00 for students. Ticket sales and reservation at 0946-541-1883 (Kath).

‘Gymgurls’ and ‘Sining Banwa EQUALove Project’ are also supported by the City Government of Legazpi, Kaboronyogan Cultural Network, Bicol University College of Arts and Letters, BU University Student Council, BU Magenta, and Bicolana Gabriela Youth, and is endorsed by the Commission on Higher Education (CHEd) and the National Youth Commission.

6 na partisipante sa Ika-5ng Saringsing Writers Workshop, napili

Napili an anom na indibidwal bilang partisipante sa Ika-5ng Saringsing Writers Workshop kan organisasyon nin Parasurat Bikolnon na gigibohon sa CBSUA Training Center, Central Bicol State University of Agriculture sa Pili, Camarines Sur poon Abril 17-19, 2015.

An mga kabali ngunyan na taon iyo sinda: Marjory Aquino kan Garchitorena, Camarines Sur; Edwin S. Breva Jr. kan Calabanga, Camarines Sur; Julius D. Bulahan kan Syudad nin Naga; Melchor De Villa kan Balatan, Camarines Sur; Sabina Marites F. Desacola kan Sipocot, Camarines Sur; asin Ian Kenneth Orasa kan Syudad nin Naga.

Naimbitaran bilang mga panelista na mataong kritika iyo sinda Jose Jason L. Chancoco, Estelito B. Jacob, Eilyn L. Nidea, Frank V. Peñones Jr., Honesto M. Pesimo Jr. asin Irmina V. Torres. Siring man, kabaling matukaw na kritiko sa taonan na hunglonan nin pagsurat an mga myembro kan organisasyon na sinda Bernardo Miguel O. Aguay Jr. (Tagapamayo), Marissa Reorizo- Redburn, Irvin Sto. Tomas asin Jusan V. Misolas.

An mga tagapadalagan kan workshop ngunyan na taon iyo sinda Elbert O. Baeta (Paratukdo, CBSUA-Pili), Jerome M. Hipolito (Paratukdo, CBSUA-Calabanga) asin Froy B. Beraña (Presidente, Parasurat Bikolnon).

Parte an aktibidad kan ikalimang taon nin pagkakamukna kan Parasurat Bikolnon, sarong organisasyon nin mga paratulod kan literatura, mga tataramon asin kulturang Bikolnon.

Para sa iba pang impormasyon, kahapotan o suhestyon dapit sa Saringsing Writers Workshop magpadara nin e-surat sa o dumanan

4th Saringsing Writers Workshop fellows named

The Parasurat Bikolnon writers organization congratulates the eleven fellows selected to participate at the 4th Saringsing Writers Workshop scheduled from December 21-23, 2014 at Central Bicol State University of Agriculture Sur (CBSUA Main Campus) in Pili, Camarines.

The regional writeshop features poetry and short story in Central Bikol, Rinconada Bikol, West Albay Bikol and Masbatenyo languages written by the following fellows: 1. Clinton D. Abilong (Pio V. Corpus, Masbate) 2. Rommel R. Alanis (Naga City) 3. Lorenz C. Almendras (Nabua, Camarines Sur) 4. Leo C. Brizuela, Jr. (Ligao City, Albay) 5. Ernesto P. Dacillo, Jr. (Nabua, Camarines Sur) 6. Digna Ruth C. Davila (Magarao, Camarines Sur) 7. Ma. Cecilia C. Dela Rosa (Naga City) 8. Jose Alfonso B. Garalde (Legazpi City, Albay) 9. Victor P. Sayangco (Calabanga, Camarines Sur) 10. Mark Yu-Solares (Balatan, Camarines Sur) 11. Jeffrey B. Teaño (Naga City)

Among the invited critics are Jason Chancoco, Bong De la Torre, Estelito Jacob, Eilyn Nidea, Jun Pesimo, Irmina Torres, and Ed Uy. Resident writers who will complete this year’s panelists are Buboy Aguay, Anthony Diaz, Jerome Hipolito, Jusan Misolas, Marissa Redburn, Elbert Baeta and Irvin Sto. Tomas.

This year’s workshop is co-sponsored by Central Bicol State University of Agriculture and Association of Student Grants-in-Aid for Poverty Alleviation (ASGP-PA) and Philippine Rural Reconstruction Youth Association (PRRYA).

A new Guide to Bikol Orthography to be launched in Ateneo de Naga

A new Guide to Bikol Orthography will be launched this coming Monday, November 17, 2014 (4PM) at the Madrigal Amphitheater, Ateneo de Naga University, Naga City. The book is a result of a one-year research project initiated by Fr. Wilmer Tria (research proponent) together with Fr. Danilo Imperial (research associate), Kristian Cordero (fieldwork supervisor), Federico Jesus Hernandez and Tito Genova Valiente (consultants).

After a series of survey conducted in all six provinces of the region, the team invited several academics, writers, government officials, media, and members of the clergy to participate in the focused group discussion. Among those who participated in FGD include Dr. Paz Verdades Santos, Atty. Henry Briguera, Fr. Rex Andrew Alarcon, Dada Docot, Frank V. Penones, + Jun Belgica, Lou Nieva and Jerome Hipolito.

The research was funded by the Ateneo de Naga University Research Council headed by Dr. Joel Noche and is published by the Ateneo de Naga University Press. Fr. Primitivo Viray, SJ, Ateneo de Naga University President and Hon. John Bongat, mayor of Naga City and other local chief executives from nearby towns of Naga will be present during the launching.

The public is invited to attend.

Call for submissions to RIMPOS 2014/2015

RIMPOS is the official literary publication of the literature and language studies department. It is now on its 3rd issue since 1999.

RIMPOS is looking for poems, usipuns, tigsiks, one-act plays, short stories, book reviews, literary criticisms, and creative essays. The call is primarily open for members of the Literature and Language Studies Department, including alumni and faculty, but we also welcome contributions from the rest of the student body of Ateneo de Naga University.

Each writer can submit up to three short stories/one-act plays/creative essays/book reviews/usipuns/tigsiks. For poetry, we require that you send at least three (and at most five) of your best works.

The pieces must be written in Bikol, Filipino, or English, original and unpublished, typed at 12pt Calibri and double-spaced (for prose; 1.5 spacing for poetry), in Microsoft Word Document format.

Please include your name, affiliation (course, organization, or department) and a brief one-paragraph bio at the end of each document, in a separate page.

Submissions must be sent as an attachment to, with “FOR RIMPOS” (sans quotation marks) and your full name written in the subject line of your e-mail. Do not write anything at the body of the e-mail.

Deadline of submissions is on 31 December 2014.

If selected, writers will be informed via e-mail by no later than 20 January 2015. All contributions accepted for publication may be subject to minor revisions as per author’s consent.



University of Nueva Caceres to hold a Seminar-Workshop on Teaching Bikol Literature in K-12 Program

The students of School of Graduate Studies, University of Nueva Caceres will hold a Seminar-Workshop on Teaching Bikol Literature in the K-12 Program and the New GEC on the 4th of October, 2014, from 8:30am to 5:00pm, at University of Nueva Caceres Social Hall (3rd floor, JH Building), Naga City.

This activity is geared towards retooling and upgrading the skills of literature teachers in both Secondary and Tertiary Levels in an attempt to improve the literature education in the country. It is the time for the new generation to appreciate the outstanding works of our very own writers.

Registration fee is 650 inclusive of kits, snacks and lunch. The book “Obras Maetras: Manual For Teaching Bikol Literature” and other books will also be available during the seminar.

For inquiries, message Esting Jacob on Facebook, or: Mobile: 09192959821 E-mail

Click llinks for CHED and DEpEd endorsements.,%202014.pdf

RUAB fun run slated on November 9

Canaman Municipal Library invites the public to RUAB para sa Aking Parabasa 2, a run for a cause which aims to promote the habit of reading Bikoliana books among children. Slated on November 9, the activityis in pursuant to Proclamation No. 109, S. 1936, declaring the month of November as the National Book Month.

In partnership with Parasurat Bikolnon and Canaman Central School Alumni Association,Canaman Municipal Library will also have a month-long book drive to encourage donations of books and other reading materials. RUAB para sa Aking Parabasa 2 will have three distances namely 5KM & 10KM at Php 200.00 and 21KM atPhp 300.00. Gun start for 21KM is at 5:00 in the morning to be followed by 10KM at 5:30am and 5KM at 6:00am at Canaman People’s Center.

Registration fee includes a donation to Aking Parabasa, t-shirt and race bib. The beneficiaries for this year’s event are Calambog Elementary School and Poro Elementary School.

Parasurat Bikolnon has previously donated book packages to Canaman Central School and Mangayawan Elementary School. In 2010, Canaman Central School Alumni Association organized Dalagan para sa Eskwelahan.

For more information and details please visit Canaman Municipal Library during office hours or contact 0919-987-4897 or 09178120950.(IPST)