Full Philippine Premiere of Dvorak’s Rusalka at Cultural Center of the Philippines and UP College of Music

The University of the Philippines College of Music will bring to life Antonin Dvorak’s heart-rending lyric fairy tale opera Rusalka on 11 and 12 September, 7:30pm at the Cultural Center of the Philippines Little Theater, Pasay City, and on 23 and 24 September, 6:30pm at the Abelardo Hall Auditorium, Quezon City. The show is directed by Alegria Ferrer with chamber orchestra to be conducted by Josefino Toledo and with sets and lighting design by Dan Silvestre and David Ohm, respectively.

In the cast are brilliant young Filipino sopranos Fame Flores and Bianca Camille Lopez, who will alternate in characterizing the difficult main role of a water sprite (serena) named Rusalka who aspires to love a human being but, in the process, was rejected and who, therefore, learnt the hazards of loving a fleshly creature that a human being is.

A full premiere of the work in the Philippines, UP’s Rusalka will be adapted to a Filipino setting, particularly to the time of Isabelo de los Reyes (1864-1938), whose contribution to knowledge of Philippine folklore is pioneering. An ilustrado intellectual of late 19th to early 20th centuries, de los Reyes documented narratives of living Philippine folk beliefs and practices of his time in order to build an archive of Philippine culture so as to understand the uniqueness of Philippine society in relation to universal truth and science.

The love that Rusalka learns in dealing with a human being in this fairy tale opera, though originating far from the Philippines, is one such truth and Isabelo de los Reyes would have easily understood its universal message. As a homage to him being a cosmopolitan Filipino nationalist who is celebrating his 150th birth centenary this year, UP College of Music juxtaposes, without translating, the original music of this opera that will be sung in English with characters whose names are familiar to Filipinos such as the spirits of the environment like diwata, hukluban, serena, nuno ng lawa, etc.

Tickets at 600 pesos each for the CCP shows and at 500 pesos each for UP are now on sale, with discounts to senior citizens and currently enrolled students. For further details, please call UP College of Music at 926.0026 or 9296963 or through UP trunkline at 981-8500 local 2639. One may also visit http://www.facebook.com/UPCollegeofmusic or twitter.com/UPCMu2014

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UP College of Music Tribute to National Artists Ramon Santos and Francisco Feliciano

QUEZON CITY, PHILIPPINES – Marking its 98th anniversary, the UP College of Music opens its faculty concert season for academic year 2014-2015 with Ipagdiwang! Tribute Concert to National Artists Ramon P. Santos & Francisco F. Feliciano at 6 pm on Thursday, 4 September 2014 at the Abelardo Hall Auditorium, UP College of Music. Admission is free but limited seats are available on first come first served basis.

Formerly known as University of the Philippines Conservatory of Music, formally opened on 4 September 1916 on Calle R. Hidalgo in Quiapo, Manila, UP College of Music has continuously nurtured the nation’s artists, scholars and teachers, and composers and has produced a number of alumni and faculty who have made significant contributions to the development of Philippine musical art, and who were later on declared National Artists for Music by virtue of a proclamation from the Office of the President of the Republic of the Philippines. These include Antonio Molina, Antonino Buenaventura, Lucio San Pedro, Felipe de Leon, Andrea Veneracion, Jovita Fuentes, Jose Maceda, Ramon Santos, and Francisco Feliciano.

The concert will honor Dr. Ramon P. Santos and Dr. Francisco Feliciano, noted Filipino contemporary composers and celebrated pedagogues, who have been recently proclaimed National Artists for Music 2014. Both have received various international awards and their works are critically acclaimed. UP university professor emeritus Santos is known for his significant contributions in studying Philippine traditional music and for his search for new directions in music, focusing on non-Western and Southeast Asian traditions. He was former dean of the UP College of Music and is currently teaching at the Theory and Composition Department of the same college. Feliciano is known for his significant contributions in bringing global awareness to the indigenous musics of the Philippines and for his leadership in liturgical music in Asia. He was a faculty member of the UP College of Music, founded the Asian Institute for Liturgy and Music (AILM), and is currently the president of Samba-Likhaan Foundation.

The program will be highlighted by tribute addresses from their noted colleagues and will feature performances of some of the composers’ celebrated works to be rendered by UP Cherubim and Seraphim to be conducted by Dr. Elena Rivera-Mirano, guitarists Lester Demetillo and Nathan Matimtim, AILM Chorale and AUIT under Mary Katherine Trangco and Eudenice Palaruan, UP Rondalla Ensemble, sopranos Bianca Camille Lopez and Jade Rubis Riccio with pianist Albert Roldan (pianist), and UP Dance Company with choreography by Steve Villaruz, which will be restaged by Herbert Alvarez for the event. UP Dance Company is under the direction of Angel Baguilat and partially consists of dancers Sarah Maria Samaniego
, Angella Betina Carlos, 
Michael Barry Que
, Minette Caryl Masa. The UP Contemporary Music Ensemble (CONEMUS) and Department of Musicology’s Tugtugang Musika Asya (TUGMA) will complete the show.

For more information and reservations, please call 926-0026/ 981-8500 local 2639 or visit http://www.facebook.com/UPCollegeofmusic or twitter.com/UPCMu2014

One can also call UP Diliman Telephone: +(632)981-8500 loc. 2629, Telefax: +(632)929-6963