Loboc Children’s Choir visits China

Baclayon, Thursday, 21 July 2005 16:06:47

The now-internationally famous Loboc Children’s Choir is leaving for the People’s Republic of China on July 17 to perform in the fabled Chinese cities of Shanghai and Hangzhou. Invited by the Soong Ching Ling Foundation in cooperation with the Liwayway Marketing Corporation and the Department of Foreign Affairs, the event celebrates the 30 years diplomatic relations between the Philippines and Mainland China and is part and fruition of the ongoing partnership of the Loboc Socio-Cultural Multipurpose Cooperative, the Diocese of Tagbilaran and the Metropolitan Museum of Manila.

Led by Lobocana conductor Alma Fernando Taldo, the choir composed of 20 students from the Loboc Central Elementary School, Kamaya-an High School , PMI High School in Loboc, and the Holy Trinity Academy in Loay, the Loboc Children’s Choir will perform with students from the Arts School for Children from the Soong Ching Ling Foundation. Said foundation was founded by the eminent woman Soong Ching Ling (Madame Sun Yat-sen, 1893-1981) late Honorary President of the People's Republic of China, a non-governmental institution bearing her name established on May 29, 1982.

The Honorary President of the People's Republic of China, Mme. Soong Ching Ling was a world-famous patriot, democrat, and internationalist, a distinguished international stateswoman and one of the outstanding state leaders of the People's Republic of China. The aim of the Foundation is to carry forward the spirit of love for children and concern for their healthy growth in body and mind which she displayed during her life-time and to contribute to the cause of children's culture, education, scientific knowledge and welfare, and to help promote the unification of China, the safeguarding of world peace and friendship among nations.

In February of this year, the Loboc Children’s Choir performed with the Little Children’s Cultural Troupe from the Shanghai chapter of the Soong Ching Ling Foundation (SCLF) at the Meralco Theatre. The resounding success of that partnership activity led the SCLF to invite the Loboc Children’s Choir (LCC) to perform in China. The LCC will regale the event with two sets of songs specially arranged, choreographed , and directed for this exchange. The Shanghai children will also perform its sets of songs and dances.

The LCC performance has Alma Taldo as conductor, Baby Lina Jala as accompanist, Gardy Labad as staging director. The Liwayway Marketing Corporation, led by its officials Carlson Chan and Shera Chan, through the assistance of the Metropolitan Museum of Manila led by Ino Manalo and Bea Zobel, gathered a core of nationally known theatre artists to help mount the event: Steve de Leon for costumes, Manny Chavez for management, Jonjon Villareal for technical direction, Beth Mondragon Hutton for choreography. The concert will showcase Filipino and Boholano heritage.

Aside from the children and artistic staff, the LCC will be escorted by provincial leaders: Governor Erico Aumentado, Loboc Mayor Leon Calipusan, Loboc Parish Priest Fr. Jeremias Jadulco, and Dep Ed Superintendent Cerina Bolos.

The concert is highlighted by a Tourism Forum organized by the MET and the Philippine Consulate in Shanghai and participated in by officials of the Shanghai Tourism Administration and Chinese Tour operators. Governor Aumentado will lead a Bohol tourism presentation assisted by key travel and tours stakeholders from Bohol like Walter and Lourdes Sultan, Peter Dejaresco, and other members of BAHRR and BOFETTO. Initiated by MET Director Ino Manalo, the forum will seek to promote Bohol as an emerging and unique eco-cultural tourism destination in Asia to the Chinese tourism market.

The LCC will perform in two cities: in Shanghai, at the Lyceum Theatre on July 18, and in Hangzhou on July 20. The tourism event will take place in the afternoon of July 18. During their stay in China, the LCC will be given a tour of cultural sights and spots in Shanghai and the West Lake district.

Gardy Labad