Tuesday, November 29, 2016

The Singing Diplomat, pays tribute to the Philippines.

Raoul Imbach. 
Tag as the Singing Diplomat from the Swiss Embassy in Manila, Mr. Raoul Imbach is not stopping in introducing his music, like in his past country assignment Imbach usually records songs from his heart as a gesture of acknowledging his new found home.

Imbach is the Deputy Head Mission of Switzerland Embassy, he is living while working in the Philippines for the past three years, and recently he revived his band “The Wild Tortillas” to accompany him not just for gigs, but for his 11th album that comprise of 14 track under the title of “Tribute To The Philippines”.

His first ever USB album is officially launch last November 19 at The Marco Polo Hotel in Ortigas Center. At the very early age, Imbach said that singing is his passion but he clarify that he is not after the fame or money rather an expression of his talent, and to give back. The proceed of the album he donate it to charity, like this time it goes to Carmelite Convent of Pink Sisters in Batangas City.
Imbach originally write all the songs with the help of his band that compose of Filipino members, all of them have Tagalog lyrics. One of the song is called “It’s More Fun in the Philippines” that serve as the carrier single.

“I usually do it in every country I go, I do one songs of the language of the country, but in the Philippines it started one, and then two and three, and now half of the album is in Tagalog, it represent a lot of things that I lived here, the things I’ve done here, the way I feel about the Philippines, so it’s a tribute, because eventually I will leave, but I would like something to leave behind, and Philippines has a lot to offer, it’s nice to recognize it thru music.” Imbach said.

He also wish to make a cover of “Anak” of Freddie Aguilar, but it didn’t reach the deadline for the album due to some copyright issues, but he is still working on it and hopefully soon he can record it since he adore Ka Freddie and all of his nationalistic songs.

I also ask Imbach if he open to join some reality TV singing search, as we all know many foreigners or expat lately are into this kind of search, and he welcome the idea, even though admitted he is too old to join such competitions, but he is willing and able if given a chance.
Tribute to the Philippines, The Album cover.
As a diplomat assign to many countries even before here in Manila, he comes with his family, yes he is married to a Vietnamese and they are together for 12 years now.

Raoul and the Wild Tortillas are compose of Jaime Vilas on the bassist, Derick Manubay on the guitar, Bok Rennie Vargas on drums, Ferdi Salamat on percussions and Marlon Victor Lim on keyboard. They are open for gigs especially this coming Holiday seasons, they are set to perform on Luneta Grandstan come 5pm of January 7 next year and its free to all.

All his music are in different digital channel ready for download like ITunes, spotify and many more. His videos are all in Youtube and you can check updates at his official site at www.thesingingdiplomat.com or thru his Facebook page.

Friday, November 25, 2016

From the Buwan and back, to the war and to love.

A new Filipino musical is about to unleash via a newly formed theatre company that will hit us with their brand new style of theatre presentation. That’s one of the aims of Black Box Productions that will revisit their “Mula Sa Buwan” production this December at Irwin Theater in Ateneo De Manila University.

Based on the play Cyrano De Bergerac from French poet Edmond Rostand, “Mula Sa Buwan” will showcase sweet and bittersweet young love during post war era of Manila.  Patrick Valera conceptualized the play along with William Elvin Manzano which was first performed in 2010 at the University of Asia and the Pacific under Dulaang Rock Opera Company.

Valera admits during its launching that this was just an introduction for its grand restaging early 2017. Thus it will only have a limited run from Dec 2, 3 and 4. Though he guaranteed that it will be as majestic as it will be by 2017.

The music and lyrics are remarkable and the pool of artists included is handpicked by Valera based on their past performances. Thespian Nicco Manalo is returning as Cyrano and also co-directing this early Christmas offering.

Joining the cast are Boo Gabunada, the alternate of Nicco as Cyrano and KL Dizon, who was outstanding as Urduja in Manhid, as the beautiful maiden Roxanne. Fred Lo and Edward Benosa will share the role as Christian.

Other members of the cast are Jon Abella, Jasmine Balunes, Gel Basa, Matthew Chang, Nico Dans, Harly Daria, MC Dela Cruz, Michael Fernandez, Francelle Fetalvero, Rhenz Gabalonzo, Patrick Libao, Arielle Magno, Victoria Mina, Ralph Oliva, Gerhard Pagunsan and Ronah Rostata.

Technical Team members are TJ Ramos for Musical Direction, Dana Marquez for Musical Arrangement, Ohm David for Set design, Meliton Roxas Jr for Lighting Design, Katherine Sabate for Dramaturgy and JM Cabling for Choreography.

“Mula Sa Buwan” opens December 2 at 8pm, Dec 3-3pm, Dec 4-3pm and 8pm, at Irwin Lee Theater located inside Ateneo De Manila University, Loyola Heights in Quezon City. For inquiries you may send them email at info@mulasabuwan.com or check their Facebook page. 

Monday, November 21, 2016

A mistake that was honest, a story from a band in Malaysia.

An Honest Mistake Band.
Crossing boarders in music, this Malaysian band is the latest MCA Universal artist that was getting perks of being introduced here in the Philippines, and in the rest of the region in Asia. An Honest Mistake headed by Darren Teh is not new in the Philippines, as a matter of fact it’s their ninth time here and been performing back and forth in Manila and in Cebu.

During its introduction recently at the Handle Bar in Makati City, Teh who handle Rhythm Guitar explain that the band originally was form January of 2008 with its first set of members, eventually after getting a deal for recording the band members change, that according to Teh is he outsource his new band mates from different cities in Malaysia, from various music forums and of course some old friends.

An Honest Mistake got its name from a dialogue delivered in one TV sitcom that Teh is watching, and since then it was called like that, but he clarify its not a mistake in terms of music since all songs he and other members write and composed, are all come from personal experiences and daily life routines.

This pop rock band is also looking forward to Urbandub, the Cebu base band who make it big in the recording scene in the country and to other Asian countries, Teh said they were inspired by Urbandub struggle as a provincial band that were able to penetrate in the main stream, they also wish to do a collaboration with Gaby Alipe someday who happen to be also a MCA Music artist.

Their latest single “We’re Alright” music video is shot and made here in the Philippines, by Filipino Director Jasper Lawan, that according to Teh is impress them so much even before they start shooting.

Other members of An Honest Mistake are Leonard Chua as the lead guitar, Tomas Tam on bass and Ian Ng on drums. They are also soon to release a new album under MCA Music Malaysia and will be available across Asia. 

An Honest Mistake is been a front act for some international band likme Boys Like Girls, Motion City Soundtrack, and Against The Current.

Sunday, November 20, 2016

Team Building locations near Manila and some tips.

Team Byaheros MNL. (Photo by Lakwatserong Mikel)
Working in BPO industry for the past seven years, takes me to many places with the people you are seeing almost every day, bonding and strengthening the work ethics and Teamwork is always a goal to hit for any team or group you’re in. As they it is a toxic job to deal with, and this Team Building rewards system is a relief for this people that were now tag as the new heroes of the economy in this country.

I’m talking about Team Building events, wherein a certain Team of your peers mostly group of 10 or more, go out of break, mostly out of town either overnight or more to get to know each other, talk about weaknesses and strengths of individuality, on how you can contribute to the Team and prosper it to achieve more greatness needed by the Company.

Team Building to any BPO company is a prize to catch, based on the performance and evaluations that you and your officemates are giving the company, and in return you go beyond your usual office chores, activities includes aside from vacations are joyous bonding, exchanging of notes that make you and your Team jive for more achievements.

It is great to be held in places, hotels or resorts far from maddening traffic chaos you are facing in the metropolis, a great view of nature either mountains, sea, lake or even in the middle of forest where you commune with possibilities of relaxing and enjoying the fresh air. It should be supported by great amenities and facilities that can make you love the place.
Team Byaheros MNL at Kayangan Lake, Coron, Palawan.
Here are five recomendees from yours truly, in looking for places that you and your team can build up the future, to deepen the friendship, to gain more rewards and commissions by chance, and to continue improving lives to a strong nation.

1.       Loreland Farm Resort.
Since most BPO are just inside Metro Manila, this Antipolo resort is mostly a great escape especially if your lacking time to travel, this resort has attractions that swimmers who love to dip and soak in cold water of swimming pool. Loreland can provide accommodations, food and refreshing air to breath, special mention its cold weather since it is the mountainous part.

Tagaytay will always be an option or a suggestion in looking for locations of Team Building, for sure the cold climate and the majestic view of a Taal Volcano is a luxury you can afford in choosing it, in visiting this City on top of mountain, and Destination Hotel Tagaytay is a perfect venue that can accommodate your group.

If the budget allocation is hefty, and most of your teammates can go farther away, this high end Hotel is a perfect venue to level up the staycation, their world class facilities and amenities is a sure winner and can go wrong with its notable service. Plus why not include to watch shows in Cultural Center or visit the nearby theme park, or just stay in the hotel and enjoy their well endorse buffet dinner.

Pansol, Laguna’s hotspring capital is the most common destination of many BPO’s Team Building event, I am sure it’s always on the preferred list of many company to go out of town break, the soothing and relaxing hot water is a therapy to many to distress . This Makiling resort is a good choice to held numerous activities such as group contest, they have a lot of space and facilities that can cater your Team needs.

5.       Mountain Lake Resort
Caliraya Lake is a byword for ecotourism in the province of Laguna, and this develop eco friendly resort is the super duper venue for Team building events, their tantamount facilities, sceneries and water sports activities are the perfect getaway to refresh minds, to condition oneself again and improve performances at work, and connect to everyone.

So it’s your choice, TravelBook.ph can help you arrange all of this with no hassle. 

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Saturday, November 19, 2016

Returning this November, Bonifacio, Isang Sarsuwela.


The well love production of Philippine Stagers Foundation,.Bonifacio: IsangSarsuwela is making a comeback this November, just in time for Andres Bonifacio’s 153 birthday this coming November 30.

During its preview recently, Director Vince Tanada reveal that this musical production is the one closest to his heart, he believe that Bonifacio is the President that we never had and his story is somewhat the new generations should know, it is ideally the revolution in the Philippines made sense during Bonifacio’s time.

The play with a Sarsuwela concept or dialogue usually sung by actors, gives hint to Bonifacio’s colorful life and his heart for the country. But Tanada who also play the said title role dismiss the notion that it glorify Bonifacio and put another hero, Emilio Aguinaldo in bad light, it is base on his research and understanding as an artist and as a theater thespian.

The return of Bonifacio for a limited show features Stagers of then and now, such as Patrick Libao, Cindy Leper, Kenneth Sadsad, JP Lopez and many more, and its newest members that also doing shows like Katips and Troy Avenue, all in this 15th Season of PSF.


Bonifacio: IsangSarsuwela is travelling to Baguio City this coming November 23, at the Baguio Convention Center with shows at 9AM 12NN & 3PM. 
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Thursday, November 3, 2016

Celebrate Christmas with Carol in Theater.

Christmas in the Philippines has many reasons and colors, a longest festivity as well, but this coming yuletide seasons, a new but old tradition is about to start once again in Philippine theater, this is through with 9 Works Theatrical along with Globe Live in presenting the award winning and long running acclaimed show “A Christmas Carol” of beloved Charles Dickens classic.

Director Robbie Guevara long wanted to direct the said play especially with 9 Works, and with partnership with Globe they are aiming to do it every Christmas and make it a tradition for theater goers in Manila.

“Even though it set in London, England in mid-19th Century, the story is very universal, there will always be Scrooge in every country, and there will always a family that will represent what the purity and innocent of Christmas time means for them, regardless of income level.” Guevara said.

A Christmas Carol is going to be stage at the Globe Iconic Bonifacio High Street Amphitheater in Taguig City, and as a Christmas presentation 9 Works see to it, it will be a bigger production compare to their past shows, so far it is the most numbered of cast around 30 or more.
Miguel Faustman
Guevara said that it is an experiential thing to happen for Christmas Carol, a lot of mini stage is set up from the main Theater down to the audience area, and the snow effect is something to look forward. Since it has a horror theme expect also some surprises.

“I think Filipino will be able to relate with the story itself, we don’t need to be haunted to be reminded, we are generally giving and courteous people, we love Christmas despite the traffic, sometimes the prices go higher than normal, it’s one of the most festive season in the country.” Guevara explain.

A Christmas Carol: The Musical is the story of Ebenezer Scrooge, and giving life on stage is Miguel Faustman, he already played the said role many times in Repertory productions, but this version is new to him and it is really a challenge for him to give a new twist.

Scrooge is a bitter miser who hates Christmas, and in order for him to appreciate Christmas four ghost visited him and show him the true meaning of Christmas. The music for this musical is from the award winning team of Lynn Ahrens and Alan Menken.

Other notable cast include Ariel Reonal, Norby David, Franz Imperial, Ela Lisondra, Kyle Francisco, GM Hernandez, Al Gaitmaitan, Nel Gomez, Jun Ofrasio, Dawn Eduave and many many more.
A Christmas Carol will be shown December 3 to 4, 9 to 11 & 16 to 18, 21 & 22, 2016 all at 8pm, and on December 25 at 7pm. For tickets contact Tel Nos. 586-7105 mobile 09175545560, Ticketworld at 891-9999 or email info@9workstheatrical.com

Co presentors are Mastercard & Huawei, Fox, Star World & Bonifacio High Street with Makeup Forever as the official makeup partner, Uniquely Pinoy and MVndo.