The National Commission for Culture and the Arts (NCCA), the country’s leading arts and culture agency, spotlights the nation’s wealth of cultural heritage as it celebrates National Heritage Month this May.
The NCCA’s Subcommission on Cultural Heritage (SCH), headed by Rev. Fr. Harold Rentoria, OSA, has lined up activities not only for a one month but for the rest of the year through the Taoid Heritage Program.
Taoid is an Ilocano word for “inheritance” or “mana.” The word has been adopted by the NCCA as the official name of the annual year-long heritage program conceptualized, implemented, and overseen by the SCH.
With this year’s theme, “New Fruits, Ancient Roots,” Taoid 2015 will kick off at the University of Santo Tomas—the oldest university in Asia and the custodian of the most complete handwritten baybayin documents recently declared as National Cultural Treasure–on May 4 with the signing of a memorandum of understanding for the continuing partnership between NCCA and UST. It will be followed by the Manila unveiling of the Santo Niño: Hope of the People, a photo exhibit initially launched as part of the Kaplag 2015 celebration in Cebu, at the lobby of the Buenaventura Garcia Paredes OP Building.
The second part of the program will be a film showing of Eggie Apostol Foundation’s National Treasures: A Journey Through History, which tells the country’s history through significant heritage structures, monuments and sites, followed by the UST J. Elizalde Navarro Round-Table Discussion on Cultural and Heritage Issues round-table discussion happening at the second floor ballroom of Buenaventura Garcia Paredes Building.
On May 11, Kristo Manil will be unveiled at the NCCA Gallery. The annual presentation by Artery Manila inspired by the Passion of the Christ has become something that generates a consciousness of cultural heritage as Christian iconography is prominent in Philippine culture, specifically in ecclesiastical art.
From May 6 to 10, the Tam-awan Village in Baguio City will mount for the sixth time its annual Tam-awan International Arts Festival. This year, the theme will be “A Global Cordillera: Heroes, Legends and Treasures.”
On May 23, the Taoid Heritage Concert will be mounted for the second time. The concert debuted last year at the UNESCO Heritage-listed San Agustin Church in Intramuros. This year, it will be held at the Ayala Terraces in Cebu City, featuring singer-songwriter Joey Ayala and the NCCA Rondalla together with Cebu artists and performers.
This will be one of a series of heritage-related activities in Cebu from May 16 to 31. Others include the Kristo Niño exhibit by the National Committee on Art Galleries; a storytelling session by the National Committee on Libraries and Information Service; local history writing workshop by the National Committee on Historical Research; a training-workshop on archive management by the National Committee on Archives; and the Gabii sa Kabilin, to be participated in by the National Committee on Museums.
Lastly, NCCA will reach different communities in the country beginning May for cultural profiling and mapping, as part of its grassroots heritage program.