Filipino concert celebrates culture

Brilliant costumes, a colourful set and smiling faces were just some of the things to be seen at the Concerto Filipino on Nov. 8.

Cultural dancers and other talent was energetically displayed at the Concierto Filipino on Nov. 8.

Cultural dancers and other talent was energetically displayed at the Concierto Filipino on Nov. 8.

Brilliant costumes, a colourful set and smiling faces were just some of the things to be seen at the Concerto Filipino on Nov. 8.

St. Augustine’s Catholic Parish Centennial Committee along with the Filipino Community of Ponoka presented Concerto Filipino for the enjoyment, learning and fun for the people of Ponoka and surrounding area.

The gym at the St. Augustine School was packed with people who came to enjoy an evening of songs and dances.

Romy Mandanas, director and one of the organizers of the event, believed the actors and actresses put on a great performance and that all had fun.

“Everyone had this amazing energy,” said Mandanas. “They were all local first time actors and actresses and I think they performed very well with energy and enthusiasm that was from the heart.”

Being the first Filipino concert that was put on in Ponoka, Mandanas was blown away by the number of people who came to see them perform.

“The community support was overwhelming as well as the support of local businesses,” he said. “When I saw the gym, it was so full of people, there were even people standing.”

The concert consisted of two acts—the first being a play, taking place in a rural Filipino village and the second, a professional performance by internationally-known George Elizalde.

The storyline of the play centered around a young couple who, after seeing each other, falls in love. When the young man gets the courage to approach the girl her mother is quick to try and break up the couple.

With a little help from his friends and the girl’s grandfather, the young man wins over the girl’s family and marries the girl.

The play was full of comedy, captivating dancing, good acting and more. There were even scenes with a dancer balancing candles as well as a group combining coconut shells and dancing, making for a wonderful evening of entertainment.

The play ends with a message that no matter where the Filipino are living in the world, that they will always be Filipinos who care for their culture and traditions.

For the second act, Elizalde took the stage. An entertainer and a teleivision host for channel 26 KTSS television in California, Elizalde dazzled the audience with his humour and singing.

Mandanas says the concert was a huge success and that the group is already looking into doing it again next year. He believes Ponoka responded in a great and positive way to the concert.

“The community of Ponoka was very generous in supporting the concert,” he said. “It is a very openhearted community.”