Imelda Papin’s name is synonymous to her sentimental brand of crooning largely among the baby boomers than acting for the movies that when she was elected president of the Actors Guild of the Philippines a couple of disgruntled judgmental denizens raised a howl of protest on social media against her election.
Like the Screen Actors Guild‐American Federation of Television and Radio Artists (SAG-AFTRA) in Hollywood, the local actors guild is also comprised TV performers, big and small.
Mel was no big movie star but she is in large measure a TV icon, unflinching to the present time in her passion for the performing arts.
The opposing camp of Dina Bonnevie must have raised their eyebrows out of defeat, but not of defiance for Imelda won by an overwhelming majority.
At the thanksgiving mass held at the Icon Hotel -Timog, Caveat had a tete-a-tete with La Papin before she went up the stage. Her welcome speech provided some aggressive shots in the direction of leadership and management style to put back the industry to its place as source of livelihood for thousands of Filipinos.
Film craftsmen from the industry under the umbrella of the Film Academy of the Philippins (FAP) for years now have been isolated, out of job and almost lost in retirement practically without security and benefits.
Her top priority is to put up a sustainable cooperative among members, augment their income and provide medical assistance to the members through much of their twilight years.
When her name was called out, the maverick lady of songs took the center stage to the deafening applause of industry insiders.
“Do you know why we are holding our thanksgiving right here in Icon Hotel?” she asked. Clueless, members looked at one another wondering yet why. La Papin broke the silence and in her typical bravado, said, “Because we are all ‘icon’ ourselves!” That did it.
Unrelenting, she spoke like the proverbial pied piper with her motley audience intently listening up to every word emanating from her lips like a lyric from a song full of dreams for hopeful members of the Guild now under her command.
In hindsight, many named actors from Fernando Poe, Jr. to German Moreno to Rudy Fernandez, et al. in their usual perfunctory ways have attempted to come to rescue the Guild from its present deplorable situation to naught, failing as they did to measure up to the members’ greatest expectations.
Will La Papin be different as compared to the male lot who headed the organization? In any case, she seemed honest in sharing her dream about her ultimate desire in the future to run for a congressional seat and to lobby for the interest and welfare in general of the local movie industry.
Today June 3, the Actors Guild is holding its first fundraiser at the Sky Dome of SM North EDSA, Q.C. Billed “A Night With The Stars,” the concert among others include erstwhile Jukebox King Victor Wood, Anthony Castelo, Marco Sison, S0onny Parsons, Keanna Reeves, Darius Razon, Patricia Javier, Aileen Papin, Garry Cruz, LA Santos, and Angelo Carreon, Imelda’s son by Bong Carreon.