By Mariela Angella Oladive
In celebration of National Arts Month 2024, the Iloilo Museum of Contemporary Art (ILOMOCA) played host to the Cultural Center of the Philippines’ (CCP) Pasinaya: Sulong!, marking the first time the largest annual multi-arts festival in the country ventured beyond the confines of Metro Manila.
“Iloilo is one of the first regional venues where we held Pasinaya outside Metro Manila, and we also had it in other provinces. There are many artists here in Iloilo, and Pasinaya is one of the events that will give them the opportunity to showcase their crafts to the people. It’s a good thing that we have this kind of event here in the city,” CCP Visual Arts and Museum Senior Culture and Arts Officer Luisa Galang told Daily Guardian.
Embracing the theme “Sulong” (Move Forward), Pasinaya 2024 extended its reach beyond Metro Manila and featured off-site regional participation in Visayas and Mindanao, with events taking place in Tagum City and Davao del Norte, alongside the ILOMOCA in Iloilo City.
The festival simultaneously showcased over a hundred shows, workshops, and engagements in music, theater, dance, visual arts, film, and literature.
With the offerings of See-All-You-Can!, Workshop-All-You-Can!, Network-All-You-Can! Pay-What-You-Can! Pasinaya provided a rich cultural experience for all attendees.
It brought together diverse art groups and individual artists from across the country, captivating audiences with performances and enlightening workshops.
In Iloilo City, the festival kicked off on February 3, featuring a series of workshops, including Bálay Binalaybay Starter Pack by Noel Galon de Leon of Hubon Manunulat also the National Committee on Literary Arts Executive Committee member, where he conducted a lecture on folk poetry, shedding light on the Lo-a of Western Visayas.
Tugma, tugma..pa’no kaginawa? by Al Jeffrey L. Gonzales also added an insightful exploration into the world of rhyme.
Among other activities on the first day included Novy Bereber’s dance workshop, “Sayaw for Parkinson’s Disease and Asian Contemporary,” and a “Contemporary Class” by Teacher Chino So.
Culminating on the next day, the festival’s final day showcased a diverse array of performances that not only captivated the audience with their artistic brilliance but also conveyed powerful messages.
The second day was equally dynamic, featuring performances and activities including Berber Sayaw Parkinson’s Org, Tuga’s Gender and Development Activities, John B. Foundation Maritime University Molo Inc’s Kinaadman Chorale, Balay Bugay Creations’ Du-wa (Two), University of San Agustin Little Theater’s “Breathe Form # Shookt,” tackling pressing societal issues, particularly mental health.
The Claravall-Gonzalez School of Classical Ballet and UPV Living Room Theatre’s “#SpeakUp,” offered a chilling and suspenseful play exploring dark and disturbing themes in an intimate theater setting.
James, an attendee of Balay Bugay Creations’ Duwa (Two), shared his enriching experience, stating, “It’s very enriching since nami ang ginpresent. It’s something I can apply on my own, like meditating and making my body move.”
Another attendee noted after watching the theater plays, “Nami and ka creative sang pagpresent nila sang different social issues we are currently confronting even those we often overlooked.”
Reflecting on the significance of Pasinaya, Galang further emphasized in an interview, “It’s a multi-arts festival; it brings together different groups, different museums, artists with different mediums, and it’s like a celebration of diversity. One of its objectives is to showcase the diverse talents and various art forms in the region.”
The event organizer also expressed gratitude to ILOMOCA and its partners in Iloilo.
ILOMOCA, located at Casa de Emperador, Festive Walk Parade, Iloilo Business Park, Mandurriao, Iloilo City, is the first museum in the Visayas region dedicated to modern and contemporary art.