February is National Arts Month (NAM), and the National Commission for Culture and the Arts (NCCA) is leading the whole nation in celebrating creativity, artistry and imagination for the whole month.
With the theme Malikhain. Mapagbago. Filipino. NCCA’s celebration of NAM kicked off with an opening program on Sunday at the Rizal Park, where free workshops and evening showcases were featured.
Thereafter, several celebrations around the country will ensue.
At the University of the Philippines in Diliman, “Kwentong Bayan, Kaalamang Bayan” will be held for the whole month. The celebration will include an art installation exhibition by five visual artists from UP, a night of music featuring songs based in and inspired by Philippine folk narratives, a puppet retelling of popular Filipino legends, a theater play entitled Si Faust at ang Dalumant ng Kasamaan to be performed by Dulaang UP, a dance interpretation of Ang Unang Aswang to be performed by UPDC, and a conference on kuwentong bayan.
The province of Bohol is also holding its NAM celebration with different activities to promote Boholano artists including a theater festival, drama workshops, an exhibit on industrial design and visual arts, an art fair, a film screening and forum, printmaking workshop, and a musical tertulla. Their opening program on will be followed by “Visual Arts and Literary Explosion of Creative Transformative Art Works” from February 16 to 18; and “Cinema Explosion Of Creative Transformative Filipino Films” from February 20 to 21 at the Bohol Cultural Center. As part of their culminating activity, the province of Bohol will also launch the Abatan River Theater Space on February 28.
Syano Artlink will hold Nature Encounter IV in Sagay City, Negros Occidental, with workshops on paper art, photography, mud house making, community children’s theater and dance for children of the town’s communities on the second and third week of February.
Moreover, Dumaguete City will hold Kisaw from February 10 to 28 featuring “Balitaw sa Tempurahan” at the Rizal Boulevard on February 17; “Teatro Kilat sa Tiangge” at the Public Market on February 18 and 25; “Putting Tabing sa Terminal” at the Ceres Bus Terminal on February 24; the Daguit Arts and Crafts Trade Fair at the Robinsons Mall from February 25 to 28; and Tayada sa Parke.
Theater group Sipat Lawin will hold “Bantayog: Bata, Banta, Bantay, Tayo, Tayog” today and on March 3 at the Bulwagang Sarimanok of the National Arts Center on Mount Makiling, Laguna. It is a devised theater production taking the form of vaudeville comprised of two parts. Part one, on fiction, features scenes from Chris Millado’s Ilokula and Buwan at Baril, Rolando Tino’s May Katwiran ang Katwiran, and F. Sionil Jose’s Pragres. Part two, on life, features scenes devised by Grade 9 and 10 students based on interviews, documents and data gathered about and from actual victims/survivors and witness of history.
The Altamarino-Clasio High School in Camarines Sur will hold the Pili Arts Festival from February 20 to 24, which will comprise a four-day workshop on photography and on indie/documentary filmmaking.
In Bais City, Negros Oriental, the first Mugna sa Pantawan will be held on February 24, an on-the-spot painting contest for all art enthusiasts in Negros Island to tap potential artists to represent the country in Korea.
Finally, up north, Bataan will hold its own National Arts Month celebration on February 27 and 28 at the Bataan Tourism Center to promote the Bataeños’ creativity and passion for culture and the arts.
More activities will be lined up and will be announced in the upcoming days.