Quantcast
Latest Stories

‘Musikahan sa Tagum’ to rock storm-ravaged Compostela Valley

Arts-for-healing in ‘Pablo’-battered areas

By

LORNA MENDOZA conducting Rondal-Awit Competition winners; contingents at the Musikahan’s local frenzy called Kasikas sa Tagum; contingent from Magugpo Pilot Central School making its mark at the Drum, Bugle and Lyre Competition in last year’s Musikahan

NOTEWORTHY. The Tagum City Symphonic Brass Band

Over a month after Typhoon “Pablo” drowned the provinces of Compostela Valley and Davao del Norte in a deadly avalanche of stones and rocks (these days, they call the town of New Bataan as New Bato-an), the highway that whisks you up the northern reaches of the Davao Region introduces you to a severely windswept landscape: huts tumbling into heaps of crushed hopes and lives; roofs of community gyms twisting in the air as one-of-a-kind images of trauma; a mall crunched up into some kind of post-nuclear holocaust; and formerly picturesque beach resorts and spring-water pools nowhere to be found anymore, buried in hillocks of pebbly rubble.

Everywhere you go, trees lie on the wayside, unceremoniously uprooted, or look limping in a state of shock as they tilt in the direction of the ferocious wind that has long passed them by.

But it has been six weeks, and schools hang streamers on their gates that declare, “Classes really resume now.”

For the past few years, the Manat Central Elementary School in the Compostela Valley town of Nabunturan has proudly maintained its title as the regional champion in the Department of Education’s annual recognition of the “Gulayan sa Paaralan.” And why not? Its four-hectare campus has been a haven of greenery—fruit trees, flowering plants, vegetable plots, trellises of edible leaves, and patches of root crops. The back lot is even called Children’s Forest.

When Typhoon Pablo came, it felled at least a hundred trees on campus and made a wasteland of the vegetable gardens. “It’s erased,” was all principal Allan R. Guerta could say. The school ended up spending over P20,000 in sawing up the uprooted lanzones, rambutan, macopa, durian, mango, coconut, and other toppled trees into usable lumber. As for the veggies, they’re simply gone. No more chances for the national finals this school year.

“We consider ourselves blessed nonetheless because the school has been spared,” says Guerta. As the concurrent district coordinating principal for DepEd’s Manat District, he reports that seven of the 10 schools serving 20 barangay under his jurisdiction were severely affected by Pablo—school buildings were ripped and a number of students no longer have homes. Guerta discloses that he cancelled the Christmas party and gave the savings of some P40,000 to the schools most in need.

FUNFARE. Tagum City Symphonic Brass Band

He says that following government warnings, he suspended classes in the afternoon before the typhoon struck. “But it was a sunny afternoon,” he recalls, “and since I’m from Surigao and am used to typhoons, I stayed in my office and worked overtime. I even left the school past 7 p.m. And then I woke up at dawn, and the wind was knocking on our doors. That was it.”

Rondalla tykes

Jessica Mesiona, 12,  Adison Matsui, 10, and Sweet Gidlyn May B. Amyer, 12—three pupils of Manat Central Elementary School—survived the ordeal, together with their families and their rondalla instruments. Don’t look now, but the Manat Rondalla will perform in a benefit concert together with the Sunrise String Orchestra, the renowned children’s strings ensemble from Thailand led by Prof. Col. Choochart  Pitaksakorn, Thailand’s National Artist for Music, as part of the upcoming Musikahan sa Tagum Festival 2013.

“Let’s face it, the prospects are bleak,” says Nestor Horfilla, executive director of the festival that kicks off the cultural calendar in Mindanao. “The area of Manat mostly relies on coconuts, and 80 percent of the coconuts here were destroyed. But we want to spur everything and everyone back to life again with music. From the wrath of destruction, so to speak, to the harnessing of creative energies.”

Now on its 13th year, the Musikahan sa Tagum Festival has become a benchmark of community engagement through culture and the arts. “It is a convergence of strategic arts management, responsive and responsible local governance, proactive corporate citizenship of the business sector, dynamic participation of the education and civic sectors as well as the barangay units, and the inspired shepherding of the tourism industry,” says Alma Uy, chair of the City of Tagum Tourism Council and wife of Tagum Mayor Rey Uy.

Premiere fest

What started as an annual platform showcasing the city’s talents in music has become one of  the country’s premiere music festivals—from rondalla and brass bands and show bands to classical music and amateur and professional vocal competitions and choral performances to music theater and music conferences and music workshops. A few years ago, the city received a grant from the National Commission for Culture and the Arts to host the third international rondalla festival as a highlight of the Musikahan.

Showcase of brass instruments at the Musikahan

“The idea is to use the musical arts in the necessary task of healing and community-rebuilding,” says Horfilla. Bannering the call “Go Green, Restore the Valley,” the cultural action project of this year’s Musikahan aims to do to “raise public awareness on environmental conservation and adaptation to climate change; generate funding support for the victims of the catastrophic typhoon, and; engage artists and cultural workers in creative activities for the rehabilitation and restoration of the caring and sharing communities in Compostela Valley Province.”

Under the “Go Green Nurture Life” project, more than 200 volunteer performing artists are featured in a nightly series of music-and-dance concerts that will raise public awareness on environmental concerns and integrate learning contents on climate change adaptation and mitigation.

“Artists Helping Artists (AHA)” is the Musikahan’s creativity fair which will exhibit the finest works of Davao-based visual artists and of Mindanao’s indigenous cultural masters for auction or sale.

Through the “Artists Engagements in Crisis Situation,” about 40 visual and performing artists trained in “arts-for-therapy” will go to the ravaged areas and conduct creative stress-debriefing sessions, especially with children and the youth.

A “volun-tourism” project will bring interested participants on a thrilling tour of landscapes both magical and miserable, and provide opportunities to do an afternoon’s volunteer work in building new homes for the typhoon victims.

Benefit concerts

And not to forget the “Dalit Musikahan: Benefit Concerts for the Affected Communities in ComVal.” Slated on Feb. 24 simultaneously in Tagum City and Davao City, the benefit concerts will be open to the public free of charge, but donations in cash and in kind are welcome. In this regard, the Manat Rondalla from Compostela Valley will be twin-billed with the Sunrise String Orchestra from Thailand for an evening concert at the new SM in Lanang, Davao City.

“We started the school year excited about joining this year’s Musikahan competitions for the Rondalla, Chorale, and Drum and Bugle,” says Fatima L. Alatraca, Math and English teacher at the Manat Central Elementary School and coordinator of the school’s rondalla, chorale, and drum and bugle groups. “But after the typhoon, we decided to cancel our participation. But the Musikahan organizers did not accept our withdrawal from the festival but instead invited us to perform with an international group during the benefit concert. Our students are happy, and we are now rehearsing ‘Tiririt,’ ‘Paru-paru,’ and ‘Bahay-Kubo,’ among others.”

This must-see event highlights the Musikahan sa Tagum Festival, which unfolds on Feb. 18-24.

For inquiries about and support for Musikahan sa Tagum, please contact The Secretariat, Cultural Action Project for the Victims of Typhoon Pablo, Musikahan sa Tagum Festival 2013, City of Tagum Tourism Office, Pioneer Avenue, Rotary Park, Tagum City; tel. 084-2162965; fax 084-3701424; mobile 0918-3367488; e-mail tagumcity_tourism@yahoo.com; website www.musikahansatagum.com.


Follow Us


Follow us on Facebook Follow on Twitter Follow on Twitter


Recent Stories:

Complete stories on our Digital Edition newsstand for tablets, netbooks and mobile phones; 14-issue free trial. About to step out? Get breaking alerts on your mobile.phone. Text ON INQ BREAKING to 4467, for Globe, Smart and Sun subscribers in the Philippines.

Tags: Art , Benefit concerts , Compostela Valley , Lifestyle , Music , Musikahan sa Tagum , Tagum , Typhoon Pablo



Copyright © 2014, .
To subscribe to the Philippine Daily Inquirer newspaper in the Philippines, call +63 2 896-6000 for Metro Manila and Metro Cebu or email your subscription request here.
Factual errors? Contact the Philippine Daily Inquirer's day desk. Believe this article violates journalistic ethics? Contact the Inquirer's Reader's Advocate. Or write The Readers' Advocate:
c/o Philippine Daily Inquirer Chino Roces Avenue corner Yague and Mascardo Streets, Makati City, Metro Manila, Philippines Or fax nos. +63 2 8974793 to 94
Advertisement
  1. How Zsa Zsa Padilla found Conrad Onglao; Sharon Cuneta played Cupid
  2. Miss America: Don’t suspend teen over prom invite
  3. Historic Fort Bonifacio tunnel converted into a septic tank
  4. President Quezon was born here–and so was Philippine surfing
  5. Almost mugged on Chino Roces Avenue
  6. How healing waters accompanied my journey of faith
  7. Palawan favorite getaway of show biz celebrities
  8. ‘Archaeology tour’ of Cebu’s heritage of faith
  9. Transitions and resurrection in the performing arts
  10. Philippine novelist wins US book award amid cancer and ‘Yolanda’
  1. How Zsa Zsa Padilla found Conrad Onglao; Sharon Cuneta played Cupid
  2. Are your favorite malls open this Holy Week break?
  3. How Vitamin B can be a remedy for ‘manhid’ and neuropathy
  4. Sarah Geronimo and Matteo Giudicelli sing ‘All of Me’–and we all swoon
  5. 90 percent of Filipino households don’t practice proper toilet hygiene, sanitation
  6. Why is the lifestyle set now afraid to wear jewelry–before Kim Henares?
  7. ‘Labahita a la bacalao’
  8. This is not just a farm
  9. 12 other things you can do at Pico de Loro Cove
  10. Marcos grandson to wed beautiful Rocha scion
  1. Mary Jean Lastimosa is new Miss Universe Philippines
  2. Did Angara ruin Pia Wurtzbach’s chances at Bb. Pilipinas?
  3. How Zsa Zsa Padilla found Conrad Onglao; Sharon Cuneta played Cupid
  4. Dominique–Gretchen and Tonyboy Cojuangco’s daughter–now an endorser
  5. Manila in shock over model Helena Belmonte’s death
  6. Vinegar test helpful vs cervical cancer
  7. From Jeannie to mom of suicide victim
  8. San Vicente beaches hidden but not for long
  9. Borgy and Georgina are back; others are off–again
  10. Why is the lifestyle set now afraid to wear jewelry–before Kim Henares?

News

  • Suspect in Vhong Navarro’s mauling wants to turn state witness – De Lima
  • Why are Americans obsessed with missing plane?
  • Napoles to have surgery on Tuesday – report
  • Mayor’s assassination linked to black sand mining controversy
  • Initial batch of Etihad passengers tested negative for MERS-CoV
  • Sports

  • PBA D-League: Waves edge skidding Superchargers
  • Ilad’s last-second basket lifts Gems over Bakers
  • Reigning champs Miami open playoffs with win
  • Spurs subdue Mavericks in playoff opener
  • Wawrinka beats Federer to win Monte Carlo Masters
  • Lifestyle

  • Miss America: Don’t suspend teen over prom invite
  • Transitions and resurrection in the performing arts
  • ‘Archaeology tour’ of Cebu’s heritage of faith
  • Historic Fort Bonifacio tunnel converted into a septic tank
  • ‘Imports’ from London, and play of the year
  • Entertainment

  • Arrest warrants out vs. Deniece Cornejo, Cedric Lee, et al over serious illegal detention
  • Lindsay Lohan says she had a miscarriage
  • Discovery network cancels Everest jump
  • ‘Captain America’ stays strong atop US box office
  • Easter musings
  • Business

  • Century Pacific Food sets IPO price at P13.75 per share
  • Oil prices down in quiet Asian trade
  • Asian shares mixed in holiday-thinned trade
  • BDO seen keen on bidding for Cocobank
  • Bataan freeport investment pledges up 1,302%
  • Technology

  • PH has slowest internet in Southeast Asia
  • Nintendo’s trailblazing Game Boy marks 25th anniversary
  • Nasa’s moon-orbiting robot crashes down
  • Netizens pay respects to Gabriel Garcia Marquez
  • Nokia recalls 30,000 chargers for Lumia 2520 tablet
  • Opinion

  • Gigi’s home
  • Palace stonewalls on MRT inquiry
  • Couple of things too
  • There is plenty of water behind Wawa Dam
  • Triduum thoughts of a young boy
  • Global Nation

  • Filipinos in Middle East urged not to panic amid MERS-CoV scare
  • Obama on mission to quiet Asia skeptics
  • Search for Etihad passengers launched
  • Japan presents $57-B ‘dream plan’ to solve Metro congestion
  • Tim Tebow’s charity hospital in Davao seen to open in 7 months
    Marketplace