Klassikal Music Foundation (KMF) marked its 10th anniversary by staging the concert, “One with the Stars,” at the Globe Auditorium, Maybank Performing Arts Theater in Taguig.
Twenty voice scholars and alumni of the KMF performed. In its decade of existence, the foundation, chaired by George Yang of McDonald’s Philippines, has produced some 60 classically-trained voice graduates.
Himself a tenor of the bel canto genre, Yang continues to generously support the vocal arts.
Yang said he believes in “giving back” to the society that has made his business venture a success. In his case, he supports the formal classical education of singers. They are presented in a yearly production for public exposure.
This year’s concert was a tour de force, attempting a crossover between classical and popular music.
Embodying the crossover was Daryl Ong, a finalist of “The Voice of the Philippines Season 2,” a TV audition show.
Individually and collectively, these singers of varied vocal textures delivered a production number of popular songs grouped into six segments: Stephanie Anne Aguilar, RenzNathaniel Cruz, Jan Kevin Cuizon, Marie Anne Dominese, Barrely Espina, Isaac Ishmael Iglesias, Camille Maica Juanitez, Leo Angelo Lanuza, Lorrenz Lloyd Lapresca, Gereberne Lozada, Belford Mabunga, Vidagrace Kahlil Mirang, Christian Nagaño, Vincent Olandesca, Amanda Nicole Pugeda, Jade Rubio Riccio, Jasmin Salvo; Jhomerita Chua-So, Cloi Daphnie Sugano, Katrine Jamar Sunga, Krissan Manikan-Tan and Jane Florence Wee.
They made a dramatic impact in Orff’s “Carmina Burana,” a song that has been heard in movies and commercials. This was followed by the equally dramatic “Polovstian Dances” by Borodin whose opening theme has been transformed by Tin Pan Alley into a haunting love song, “Stranger in Paradise.”
Other popular songs that were a treat to the audience were “Over the Rainbow,” “Quizas” (Perhaps), “Bohemian Rhapsody,” “Paparazzi/Fever” and “Despacito.”
Yang joined the scholars in the segment made up of the popular Neapolitan song, “Dicitencello vule,” that was popularized by Vic Damone in the 1950s, “Just Say I Love Her,” “Amigos Para Siempre” and “Con te Partiro.”
Yang likewise did an awesome rendition of “Nessun Dorma,” which has become a popular crossover hit. His voice has remained intact and acquired greater depth. Now a septuagenarian, his voice soared up magnificently to conquer the song’s high note that he held brilliantly.
“We will continue to uphold our mission to help our scholars, provide the support and encouragement they need to achieve their dreams and for them to share their talents to the world,” said Yang.
Singing was enhanced by choreography provided by some dancers courtesy of Liza Macuja-Elizalde’s Ballet Manila. At the pit was musical director Dingdong Fiel who led the chamber ensemble. Music arranger was Gabriel Art Mendoza; light designer John Batalla and production manager Joanne Rodriguez. Acclaimed baritone Andrew Fernando was artistic director. —CONTRIBUTED