RP Gears Up For Arts Fest 2011

The Philippine International Arts Festival (PIAF) is set to wow the country yet again as it unveils “Ani ng Sining” on February 2011 in celebration of the National Arts Month. Now on its 20th year, the country’s biggest arts festival will gather thousands of artists all over the country to further promote the Filipino culture in the seven arts.

Preparations are already under way for the country’s biggest art festival with four grand openings slated to take place in the National Capital Region, Luzon, Visayas and Mindanao. Elaborate performances and exhibitions will be staged for the said openings in celebration of the Filipino arts.

With lectures, conferences, exhibitions and performances slated to tour nationwide, the PIAF is promising a meaningful and fruitful celebration on the month of hearts in the hopes of instilling the richness of Philippine tradition to our countrymen as well as to tap undiscovered talents. Joining the roster of local artists are international delegates invited to grace the festive celebration to forge deeper understanding and stronger cultural relationships through collaborative performances and outreach projects in different parts of the country.

The Committee on Architecture and Allied Arts will be staging multi-venue lectures and exhibits for the “archi[types/text] 2011” which will be highlighted by the environmentally-related Sand Constructions in Boracay. Also, exhibits that will tackle the morphology of Filipino Buildings, the Colonial Urbanism and Architecture during the American Period, fashion and architecture, architectural postcards and cinema houses will be staged. Architect Gerard Lico, Ph.D. vice head of the committee leads the nationwide exhibition tours and seminars. Respected architects from Southeast Asia will be joining the roster of local architects to tackle Sustainable Tropical Architecture.

The National Committee on Dance, led by Shirley Halili-Cruz, will be presenting Sayaw Pinoy as its contribution to the National Arts Month celebration. This has been part of the PIAF for the past eight years and the Sayaw Pinoy 2011 will be touring 21 key areas nationwide, with featured performances from Cambodia, Thailand, Brunei and Vietnam.

“Tanghal: 5th University Theater Festival” will be gathering university-based theaters and student artists nationwide. Undertaken by the National Committee on Dramatic Arts, led by Dr. Glecy Atienza with Ma. Lourdes Josefa Lopez, Tanghal will be having its opening at the University of St. La Salle, Colegio San Agustin and West Negros University in Bacolod. An added feature of this year’s celebration will be the Monodrama Manila with delegates from Lithuania, Japan, and Fujaira of UAE joining in. Monodrama Manila will be held at the Cultural Center of the Philippines, from 8- 13 February 2011. It will feature the ancient tragedy, “Antigone” by esteemed theater actor Birute Mar of the Lithuanian National Drama Theater performing back-to-back with the literary masterpiece on war of the contemporary milieu, “Miracle in Rwanda” by internationally renowned Filipina African American theater actor Leslie Lewis-Sword, and “Memory of Pain and Joy” Mahmoud Abu Alaabas of U.A.E. Other performances include some of the best representative Filipino Monodramas by seasoned actors, directors and playwrights. Also, a Cambodian Circus was invited to further hype up the theater flagship project.

Envisioned to gather 80 national and international writers, the Taboan Philippines International Writers Festival 2011 will be moving to Davao City, following its successful run in Cebu earlier this year. The best writers of the country will compose the national delegation while award-winning foreign writers from Hong Kong, Australia and Singapore will be joining the international delegation. Accordingly, the Taboan components will include panel discussions, lectures, outreach and school visitation programs, book fair, literary readings and performances and the Taboan Awards. The Taboan 2011 is undertaken by the Committee on Literary Arts headed by Arts Sub-Commissioner and PIAF Festival Director Ricardo de Ungria.

The Committee on Music, led by musician Joey Ayala, will be staging Organik Muzik 3 in Manila, Davao, Puerto Princesa and Cebu with the special participation of musicians from Vietnam and Indonesia. Organik Muzik 3 is aimed at “bringing a variety of cultural influences that are not readily accessible through the mass media to a broader and younger society” and will be featuring concert tours and workshops for local artists, students and educators.

With NAM 2010’s success following closely behind, this year’s CinemaRehiyon 3 of the Committee on Cinema will again be restaged with more regional films tapped to join the event. In addition, award-winning filmmakers from Indonesia are set to join the roster of the young and talented Filipino filmmakers in this CinemaRehiyon 3.

For the Committee on Visual Arts led by Egai Fernandez, Boracay remains to be a strategic location for the Philippine International Visual Arts Festival (PIVAF) with its successful launch for the past NAM celebration. The PIVAF11 will be expanding the NAM celebration by adding in more satellite venues, namely Isabela and Angono in Luzon, Cebu in Visayas and Davao in Mindanao. This year’s visual arts festival will be focusing on the traditional Philippine tattoo art practices, methods and designs with lectures on specialized topics such as the elaborate Pintados etchings, the delicate patterns of the Bontoc Igorot and the Kalinga and Ifugao people and the unique designs of the T’bolis in Mindanao. Guest artists from Indonesia, Singapore, Japan and Thailand will be participating in the PIVAF 2011.

The National Arts Month is annually celebrated as per Presidential Proclamation 683 in 1991 declaring February as the National Arts Month. Accordingly, it is known as “a time for nationalism and pride in being a Filipino” through carefully planned events for the preservation and enrichment of the Filipino expression in the seven arts.