Art&Culture (08/23/23)

CCP presents Tagalized abridged operas

BACK-TO-BACK abridged versions of Gioachino Rossini’s The Barber of Seville and Wolfgang Amadeus Mozart’s The Marriage of Figaro take the centerstage in the second installment of the “CCP Out-Of-The-Box Series,” the newest program of the Cultural Center of the Philippines (CCP) featuring unconventional programming for adventurous artists and audiences. The CCP Out-Of-The-Box Series returns with Figaro! Figaro!! on Aug. 25, 7:30 p.m., and Aug. 26, 3 p.m., at the Tanghalang Ignacio B. Gimenez (CCP Black Box Theater). “In olden times, the composers wanted their operas to be in the language of their audiences. So, we decided to translate the two operas into Filipino. We want opera to be more accessible to Filipino audiences,” said CCP Vice-President and Artistic Director Dennis N. Marasigan who did the translation for this production, in a statement. Directed by Jaime del Mundo, the back-to-back opera production follows the adventures of Figaro, the main character of the two operas, which is based on The Figaro Trilogy by French playwright Pierre Beaumarchais. The trilogy (the third is La Mère coupable or The Guilty Mother) revolves around the adventures of a resourceful servant named Figaro, as well as the fascinating recurring characters. The abridged operas will feature performances by Filipino singers Bianca Camille Aguila, Roxy Aldiosa, Diego Aranda, Angeli Benipayo, Ruzzel Clemeno, Nerissa de Juan, Roby Malubay, Nomher Nival, Noel Rayos, Jonathan Tadioan, and Floyd Tena. Tickets can be purchased for P1,500 via TicketWorld.

MSO presents Hina Maeda in concert

THE MANILA Symphony Orchestra (MSO) will feature violinist Hina Maeda at its 3rd concert of the season, Wieniawski and Rimsky-Korsakov, on Aug. 26, 7:30 p.m., at the Ayala Museum in Makati. Ms. Maeda will perform Henryk Wieniawski’s Violin Concerto No. 2 in D minor, Op. 22 with the Manila Symphony Orchestra, under the baton of Maestro Marlon Chen. Tickets to the concert are available via TicketWorld.

ARTablado focuses on Arsega’s lines

THE LINE drawings of artist Arturo Arsega, Jr. call to mind art class projects where one had to draw faces and figures without lifting the pen or brush from the paper. The end result may look deceptively simple but getting there takes practice and a lot of trial and error. Mr. Arsega Jr. makes it look easy even if the journey he took to get to where he is now was not exactly a walk in the park. By his own admission, he wandered into the art scene just three years ago after working for close to a decade in the Middle East. He quickly fell sick after returning to the Philippines, and it was during this low point that he turned his attention to the arts. Mr. Arsega had long been interested in drawing having drawn comics as a child. Decades later, after experimenting with landscapes and abstract art, Mr. Arsega returned to drawing. His line drawings may not be detailed or belabored, but with the addition of a few strokes of paint or a background in a watercolor-like wash, he has come up with his own distinct style. In 2020, with the help of an online gallery, he was able to sell his first artwork. Since then, Mr. Arsega has gone on to hold a solo exhibit, with his second solo show, “Dream Line,” ongoing at ARTablado, Robinsons Galleria until Aug. 31.

Big Bad Wolf going to Cebu

THE BIG Bad Wolf Book Sale returns to Cebu for the first time since 2019. The three-week sale will run from Sept. 15 to Oct. 1, where it will offer new and exclusive titles discounted at up to 95% off. With over two million books up for grabs, the fair will feature new and exclusive releases only available in Cebu. Aside from free admission, the Big Bad Wolf Book Sale will also have exclusive deals, promos, and discounts. It will be held daily from 10 a.m. to 10 p.m. at SM Seaside City Cebu, LG level, Cube Wing.

Newbie friendly platform for writers, readers opens

TYPEKITA is a newly launched app that aims to empower young Filipino storytellers by rewarding their creativity with accessible and self-determined monetization, while gifting readers with an interactive and visually stimulating reading experience. The app is a localized version of the Thai original Joylada, and is powered by homegrown social entertainment platform Kumu. At TypeKita’s official launch on Aug. 16, Head of Growth Ysabel Yuzon, Vice-President of Strategic Management Dana de la Vega, and Creator Manager Erich Valdevioso discussed its growing potential to “open doors even for those who may not have considered writing before.” Live readings of current TypeKita favorites Babalik Sa’yo (Rej Martinez), The Day I Said Goodbye (Miyuki Jeishi), and Hush Lucas (Arki Aaron) were then performed by Nour Hooshmand, Ian Pangilinan, and Benedix Ramos. TypeKita uses the chat-fiction format that makes both creation and consumption more accessible, providing a gateway to long-form in the future if creators are so inclined. The app offers a wide range of genres — currently popular are romance with LGBTQ+ themes; young adult, coming-of-age stories; and fantasy and mystery. While many of its features are free, the app also has a monetization feature for creators. TypeKita is available for download via the App Store and Google Play.

Joseph Emmanuel Garcia

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