THE Philippine Philharmonic Orchestra (PPO) performs under the baton of guest conductor Gerard Salonga in the PPO’s 6th season concert on February 14 at the Cultural Center of the Philippines Tanghalang Nicanor Abelardo (Main Theater). Soprano Andion Fernandez-Ching is the guest soloist.
Slated on Valentine’s Day, the program for the concert includes Lucio San Pedro’s Ang Buwan sa Kabundukan, Franz Schubert’s Erlkonig, Manuel De Falla‘s Siete Canciones Populares Españolas, Pyotr Ilyich Tchaikovsky’s Tatiana’s Letter Scene (Eugene Onegin), Jeffrey Ching’s My Heart Stayed Numb (The True Story of King Kong) and Pyotr Ilyich Tchaikovsky’s Symphony no.6, op. 74, B minor “Pathetique.”
Gerard Salonga is currently the music director of the ABS-CBN Philharmonic Orchestra in Manila, and is in his second season as assistant conductor of the Hong Kong Philharmonic Orchestra. He has guest-conducted the HK Philharmonic, Philippine Philharmonic, Shanghai Opera House Orchestra and Chorus, Evergreen Symphony, Bangkok Symphony, Malaysian Philharmonic, Orchestra Victoria in Melbourne, and early this year made his debut with the Sydney Symphony Orchestra. In December of 2016 Gerard orchestrated the Concerto for Bassoon and Orchestra by National Artist Col. Antonino Buenaventura, which was given its world premiere by the Philippine Philharmonic Orchestra and bassoonist Adolfo Mendoza.
A soloist of the Deutsche Oper Berlin from 2001 to 2010, Andion Fernandez-Ching graduated with honors from the Universität der Künste, Berlin, and studied voice with Karan Armstrong and contemporary music with Aribert Reimann following her studies with Fides Cuyugan-Asencio at the University of the Philippines. She is a prize winner of Operalia International Opera Competition (Placido Domingo World Opera Contest, Hamburg) and the Cardiff Singer of the World competition, and has sung in the Deutsche Oper Berlin, the Deutsche Staatsoper Berlin, the Festspielhaus in Baden Baden, the Deutsche Oper am Rhein, the Gulbenkian Auditorium in Lisbon, the Kallang Theatre and Victoria Theatre in Singapore, the Glazunov Hall in St. Petersburg, and the Gran Teatre del Liceu in Barcelona.