Philippine National Heritage Month & Good News

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May 2009 had been designated the Global Philippine National Heritage Month by Her Excellency President Gloria Macapagal-Arroyo. And what a month it was! Not only were there a fantastic series of events on offer throughout London but there was good news all round too!

The events were:

2nd May – Manny Pacquiao vs Ricky Hatton…What a way to start the month!

9th May – Pinoy Theatre present Pearls of the East. Closing off their six show run that began on 23rd April. Click here for some pictures!

10th May – Filipino Dance and Music Workshop from Lahing Kayumanggi. Giving people the opportunity to learn a few traditional dances and perform them with the Lahing Kayumanggi dancers. Click here for some pictures!

10th May – Kasayahan! A musical performance from West End stars including two of the Pinoy Theatre cast members.

16th May – Flores De Mayo Santa Cruzan. A traditional Filipino Festival celebrating the Virgin Mary with floral offerings, as well as a parade in honour of Reina Elena (Queen Helena, mother of the first Christian Roman Emperor, who is credited with finding the relics of Holy Cross and bringing them to Rome).

24th May – Barrio & Food Festival held by Festival Philippines in Frimley, Surrey.

3rd June – 5th June – Young Art Philippines Exhibit 2009. An impressive exhibition from seven of the best young Filipino artists. They are touring Europe exhibiting in London, Vienna, and Berlin.

For all those who attended any of these events, it is a tribute to the many organisations involved that they were able to experience the Philippines and Philippine culture outside the official Barrio season!

Other recent good news include:

Big congratulations to English Premier League Club Fulham’s and Philippines’ International goalkeeper Neil Etheridge. He has secured a contract extension and was recently presented to the Fulham crowd! With Neil still under 21, the potential is there for him to be part of the development of a team that can seriously qualify for the World Cup.

As a community we had two Filipinos, Gene Alcantara and Steven Cheung, brave enough to run to become Members of the European Parliament, hopefully this will inspire others of us to take an interest and potentially put themselves forward as candidates for local elections or at least join a party and give Filipinos a voice and presence in the system.

Philippine Generations can also confirm that we have received our first funding cheque enabling us to go ahead with our Philippine cultural workshops Kultura! It will be a one day event enabling people to learn and perform elements of Philippine martial arts, drama production and dance. More details to follow!!!

On 4th June at the Philippine Embassy, the artists from the Young Art Philippines Exhibit 2009 donated a painting each to Philippine Generations! They even joined us at the first ever PG Pow Wow at the Comedy Pub in Piccadilly. There PG members and friends were able to chat and drink with these amazingly talented individuals and their patron, Ver Cuizon, art impresario, art critic and MD of the Kunst gallery. The Exhibition itself was very successful and somewhat bittersweet…most of the paintings were bought by British and European people, they had hoped the Filipino community would purchase more and appreciate the subject matter that perhaps they would understand and relate to more.

The PG Pow Wow and venue was a great success. Philippine Generations had the entire 2nd floor, there was a comedy night on the 1st floor and karaoke until 2am in the basement! Enough to keep everyone entertained. The next PG Pow Wow is pencilled in for 2nd July and there is no reason to change the venue, so come along and bring your friends! Ever since the Meet and Greet in 2007, people have asked when are we going to have opportunities for people to get together and network again, well this is it and it is happening every first Thursday of the month! Click here for some pictures!

The last bit of good news is that we now have three volunteers that are updating the site, sending out emails and interacting with people through tools such as Twitter and Facebook! So if you have received emails or messages from PG sent by people you do not recognise, don’t worry, they are PG members, Janette Robertson, Kat Bayang and Ava Batay-an! I’d like to send a big thank you for their continuing help and support, especially as PG director Mae Williams, who usually updates everything herself, has just given birth to her second child., which means she has even less time to keep Philippine Generations running smoothly. Congrats Mae, the 3rd generation is growing!!! If you’d like to help us and volunteer some of your time for events, projects and admin, please contact us at philippinegenerations@googlemail.com.

Finally we would just like to thank those who attended the Pow Wow, friends and members, old and new, Filmefilms, Pinoy Theatre, and a special thank you to the artists, from the Philippines, Vir Cuizon and DCM Rey Catapang & family. We hope more will come next month.


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