Manila’s culturati gathered recently at the residence of Nene Quimson at La Vista Village in Quezon City for a musical soiree celebrating Philippine performing arts.
Organized by the Asian Cultural Council (ACC) Philippines Foundation led by Ernest Escaler and Tess Rances, the event gathered ACC’s benefactors supporting Philippine artists through the council’s grants program.
Foundation chair Escaler said the ACC provides fellowship grants to artists, scholars and specialists from Asia to undertake study and creative work in the United States.
In the audience were Rep. Imelda R. Marcos whom Escaler acknowledged as the “original patroness of the arts”; Foreign Affairs Secretary Teodoro Locsin Jr., Finance Secretary Carlos Dominguez lll; United States Ambassador Sung Yong Kim; Ambassador to the United Kingdom Antonio Manuel R. Lagdameo; former Ambassador to the United States Jose L. Cuisia Jr.; National Artist for Dance Alice Reyes; president of the Philippine Philharmonic Orchestra Society, Inc. Zenaida Tantoco.
Featured artist was pianist Hiyas A. Hila, DMA, whom the ACC awarded the John Quimson Fellowship for her graduate and postgraduate studies in piano performance. She earned her master’s at the San Francisco Conservatory and her doctorate at the University of Minnesota.
Quimson had donated the fellowship, named after her late husband, who became Philippine ambassador to the Court of St. James.
Since 2000, the ACC Philippine Foundation has given more than a hundred fellowships.
ACC started in 1963 when it was known as the John D. Rockefeller (JDR) 3rd Grant, ACC has given 6,000 grants, 400 of them to Filipino artists and scholars. Seven grantees have become national artists: Lucrecia Kasilag, Jose Maceda, Ramon Santos and Francisco Feliciano in music; and Alice Reyes (dance), Jose Joya (visual arts). and Kidlat Tahimik (film). –CONTRIBUTED