PG Speaks to Paul Masangcay, Muay Thai Fighter

On Saturday 26th March, Paul Masangcay is fighting Kieran Manwaring at the O2 in London in the Muay Thai Grand Prix.Paul Kick

Philippine Generations caught up with Paul to learn more about his journey as a Second Generation Filipino in the UK…

PG: How old are you?

Paul: Just turned 24 a few days ago.

PG: Where are your parents from in the Philippines?

Paul: Both parents are from Pampanga; Father – Macabebe and Mother – Capas Tarlac

PG: Tell us about your family?

Paul: First and foremPaul and Familyost I love my family to bits; always support me in whatever I do – fighting wise and in general life.My dad works as a chef in a English/Filipino restaurant check them out on Facebook – Benso Cafe, mum works in a hospital within the catering department and my sister works for HSBC.

PG: What inspired you to take up fighting?

Paul: I wasn’t the athletic type throughout my childhood and was overly obese (not ashamed to say) but I’ve done martial arts since the age of 4. I found Muay Thai at a later age of 17, was going to just participate for general fitness and weight loss (started at 122kg) but a few months later found myself doing a no win no lose bout and been competing since professionally. So far throughout my fighting career I haven’t seen much Filipinos in this sport so this gave me a drive to show people how talented we are and to give us Filipinos more recognition as we deserve it. Always want to make myself and family proud!

PG: Who is your fighting hero and why?

Paul: My fighting hero would have to be my team mate and training parter Luciano ‘Lucky’ Mendola both training out of The Knowlesy Academy. The reason I look up to him as no matter what, Lucky has no excuse not to train even if he isn’t in fight camp he trains like he is, he eats healthy all year round, doesn’t let any barriers stop him, motivates his team mates, gives off good vibes, always gives an amazing performance in the ring, doesn’t dodge anyone to fight/ fight who ever, never complains and he is only 18 years old! Love this guy like a little brother.

PG: Who is your Filipino hero and why?Paul with Dad and Cops

Paul: My Filipino hero/s would have to be my parents as without them I wouldn’t be here doing what I love and they have shown me how to live the right way in life following their family traditions which I’m proud to show people. They tell me off but it’s for the best and want to prove to them they have raised my sister and I correctly.

PG: Why Muay Thai? Where do you train?

Paul: Muay Thai is a beautiful fighting art, very technical but brutal so you get the best of both worlds. It’s very disciplined which has helped me in my everyday living life, the training is very challenging which I like and I can show it off in the ring making it a bigger test. I’ve met so many amazing people in the Muay Thai world, which I’m happy! I train at The Knowlesy Academy in north west London, check them out.

PG: How much do you know about Eskrima also known as Arnis the Filipino martial arts?

Paul: I’ve always wanted to try Arnis out as its our own martial art, seen many videos of it and have a big interest to try it out. Watch this space!

Paul and SisPG: Where did you grow up and did you mix with the Filipino community?

Paul: I grew up in north west London where there are many Filipinos and have always mixed with them. More or less in my childhood I’ve been going to Filipino events and family parties.

PG: When did you last go to the Philippines and where did you visit?

Paul: Last time I visited Philippines was May 2015, it was just a short visit of 10 days so had to travel between parents places. I managed to go to Baguio, a few beaches but forgot their names and many malls for the shopping. Love going back to the Philippines!

PG: What’s your favourite Filipino food?

Paul: Kare Kare with Bagoong also Balut!

Good Luck Paul!

Philippine Generations is committed to Educating, Inspiring and Empowering Filipinos in everything we do. It is always great to hear of young Filipinos like Paul, who are proud of their heritage and use that strength to better themselves and the people around them.

If you have a great story to tell, get in touch!


Philippine Independence Day World Cup 2013

It's almost that moment many of you have been waiting a whole year for! 16 Teams will compete once again to be crowned the Champions of PIDWC 2013! 2010 - Manila Ice 2011 - Bora Warriors 2012 - Bora Warriors 2013 - ??? The 4th Annual Philippine Independence Day

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PNoy meets the Filipino Community in London

“Have you ever been ignored by the very government you helped put in power? I have.”Strong words from a man who has had to be strong. In 2010, Benigno ‘Noynoy’ Aquino III was swept into the Philippine Presidency on a tide of emotion and nostalgia. President Noynoy, PNoy, used

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Staying in touch with the Philippine Generations family

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The Philippine Generations’ social has become quite the institution and gateway to the cultural activities we both organise and promote. In the short time that I have been a part of the management committee, I have seen the crowds that join us become more reflective of a professional network beyond 2nd generation Filipinos. Whether it is through word-of-mouth, friends, work colleagues or through the PG team, it has been incredibly fun to learn of people’s interests and share our passions and good humour together.
We find ourselves sharing stories and the jokes that entertained us from those we meet between us here within the PG team, and we explore the opportunities that will engage as much of who we meet with each other. To say the least, making connections as we do at each social is energising. But we cannot do it alone. Do more beyond the social by staying in touch with who you’ve met, and staying in touch with us! Tell us about yourself and if you can – volunteer with us! We are always on the lookout for volunteers and writers. 
Follow us on Twitter @PhilGen and on Facebook and our blog! There is plenty more to come this year, so stay tuned.
Kat Cruz


Manila to Mayfair: the journey of contemporary Filipino art

Stories of Dreams and Realities

Please refer to the exhibition catalogue to find this collection of works produced by contemporary and eclectic Filipino artists, assembled by the Drawing Room in Manila, exhibited in the heart of Mayfair at the Rossi & Rossi Gallery (June-July).

A Retrospective

One glance at the collection is all it takes to confirm that Filipino art of today has reached new heights of expression, extending far beyond the cliched messages usually decorated in the red, blue, yellow and white colours of the flag. 

Martin Clist, co-ordinator at Rossi & Rossi shares his impressive knowledge of the artists and their works (paintings, sculptures and installations) with my friends and I as we look over each artwork. Renowned artist Alfredo Alquilizan’s ‘Landscape Painting’ is in fact made up of one painting (not several paintings) that he had bought, cut up and framed individually. There are suddenly 40 or so different scenes, 40 or so different stories for the viewer to imagine.

Troy Ignacio’s paintings are sinister and not obviously beautiful of course, but the ‘ugliness’ and the sense of poverty and illness is something that is still relatable. I snort appreciatively at Jose Legaspi’s painting which depicts a man glaring out at the viewer  – holding excrement in his right hand. Until your attention is drawn to what he is holding in his hand, the painting is normal, though it is anything but that. Nothing, as they say, is as it seems.  

A gleaming steel installation (Lirio Salvador) of spoons and cogs is hung on a wall. It is a reinvention of material and purpose: an intricate, decorative steel guitar connected to an amp which you can pluck at!

Martin wonders out loud about the name of the exhibition: ‘Stories of Dreams and Realities’; I agree with the choice of the title. The paintings and installation that I’ve highlighted above are just my personal favourites, but each of the works in the exhibition tells a unique story of its own. There will be more than one artwork which reminds you of something familiar you’ve experienced before, but one you cannot for the life of you describe or recall with sharp clarity. Was it a memory or something of a dream? The choice of artworks on display are expertly chosen in a way which expresses an incomplete journey of a dream or reality. 

I remember how self-fulfilling looking at art can be, how much I appreciate a form of expression that makes up for when one is lost for words. Although it is a private experience, it is great to share with others. The innate dedication in the artist and his/her art to empower the observer to imagine and create is selfless.

Most of the artwork from ‘Stories of Dream and Realities’ has been sold to both Western and Asian customers, awakening the world to contemporary Philippine art – an international success. We leave the gallery in hope that Filipino art continues to arrive to London.

Kat Cruz

Modern Philippine Art, with love from Manila

Stories of Dreams and Realities exhibition at the Rossi & Rossi Art Gallery in Mayfair has been officially extended until next Friday 29th August. (disregard the dates on the website) Check this out!!
The collection, carefully selected by Cesar Villalon Jr., is from the Drawing Room – one of the most prolific art spaces in Manila. Photos of the artwork can be seen on the website and all pieces are for sale. A couple have already been sold to both Filipino and Western art collectors.
According to exhibition co-ordinator Martin Clist, Philippine art is being recognised as an ’emerging market’ which should raise hopes of developing artists who have something to contribute to the Philippine arts – both at home and abroad.
There are works by Alfredo Alquilizan, Kawayan de Guia and Jose Legaspi who make up 4 out of the 11 artists featured. Paintings, 3D sculpted models and an exciting steel installation by Lirio Salvador (artwork-turned-instrument!) make up this inspiring collection. Please refer to the catalogue, and come along to the gallery! Not to be missed.
Exhibition extended until Friday 29th July
10am – 5.30pm
Rossi & Rossi Gallery
16 Clifford St, W1S 3RG (Green Park/Picadilly Circus tube stations)    
*Rossi&Rossi Gallery is an art space dedicated to classical and contemporary Asian art. 
K.A. Cruz