Winners of the 4th Jovita Fuentes Voice Competition were named in formal ceremonies in Roxas City, Capiz, where National Artist for Music Jovita Fuentes was born.
In the female category, first placer was Mheco Joy Manlangit. Jasmin Salvo was second and Angelica Benipayo third.
In the male category, Radnel Ofalsa won first place. John Pitas took second place and Jose Mari Avato third.
Acclaimed tenor Arthur Espiritu was head of the jury with soprano Camille Lopez Molina, music writer Pablo Tariman, music teachers Bimbo Muyuela and Sr. Sr. Asuncion Evidente, D.C.
Competition collaborating artist was Dr. Michelle Nicolasora with baritone Joseleo C. Logdat as artistic director and Dr. Raul C. Navarro as competition chair.
In his welcome remarks, Navarro pointed out that the competition has allowed music lovers to know the greatness of the great Capizena in the person of Fuentes.
“Truly, talent knows no race as the Maestra transcended the limits of our geographical locus, and captured the world of music with the magnitude of her abilities as an opera singer and pedagogue. Through this competition, we in the organizing committee are discovering that the Filipinos are excellent musicians and artists to which this competition acts as a venue to highlight their vocal talents.”
Fuentes passed away on Aug. 7, 1978 at the age of 83.
The competition for singers at the collegiate level was initiated by the Santa Isabel College Manila in association with the Daughters of Charity, United Capizeños Foundation, Gerry Roxas Foundation, National Commission for Culture and the Arts, and Roxas City Museum, represented by Cheryl Anne del Rosario, who briefed jury and contestants about the arts activities in Roxas City.
Del Rosario told the Inquirer that Roxas City is the hometown not just of Fuentes but also of National Artist for Theater Daisy Hontiveros Avellana and noted piano pedagogue Rosario Picazo, the first teacher of pianist Cecile Licad. –CONTRIBUTED