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Filipino Canadians make history in British Columbia polls

VANCOUVER, British Columbia—Maita Santiago was sworn in as councilor of Burnaby in British Columbia (BC) last Nov. 2, 29 years after she failed in a similar electoral attempt in Vancouver. Santiago, an immigration consultant and a native of Bulacan in the Philippines, is the first of Filipino heritage to take the post of councilor of...

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Into the forest, across streams and rivers, and up and down hills

I went back to the remote Barangay Villa Espina in Lopez, Quezon, one Tuesday morning. At 6:30 a.m. after insufficient sleep the night before, I jumped into a decrepit jeepney—only one unit plies the route twice daily if the weather is fine—bound for the barangay (village). It was sunny, unlike the first time I embarked...

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Glamour and glitz (and more) in drag

Dahhhlings, it’s time to put your wigs on. But be ready for the fabulous queens of Drag Race Philippines to snatch them right off. The local version of the hit global franchise has everything you want in drag—fashion, camp, music, talent, drama (oh, the drama!), comedy, culture, heart—and much more. The race to crown the...

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‘Pamana’: Archery enthusiasts aim at heritage target

Every Tuesday and Friday on a grassy lot behind the University of the Philippines’ (UP) Albert Hall in Diliman, Quezon City, enthusiasts are shooting arrows at a circular straw target from different distances. Rather than hitting the bull’s eye and running up points as in competitive archery, they are focused on perfecting the athletic art...

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Celebrating multi-identities and diversity

This year, Philippine sports got a big boost by the performance of its women’s national football team. In February, the team, Filipinas, reached the semifinals of the Asian Football Confederation Asian Cup, thus qualifying for the FIFA Women’s World Cup. In May, it copped a first-ever medal finish (bronze) at the 31st Southeast Asian Games. And...

‘A sharp bite in its unassuming quiet’
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‘A sharp bite in its unassuming quiet’

“Moon Hanging Low Over My Window and Other Poems,” a book of poetry written by Babeth Lolarga and published by UST Publishing House, will be available for pre-orders starting Aug. 1.  Readers who will pre-order via Shopee will get the title for a special price of ₱520. The pre-order link will be made available when the...

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Cinemalaya: back with a vengeance

Through the years since 2005, the Cinemalaya festival, a project of the Cultural Center of the Philippines (CCP), has been providing the more discerning moviegoers—many of them young people—some memorable films. During that first year, one of the independently produced  movies in the full-length category was “Ang Pagdadalaga ni Maximo Oliveros.” It did not win...

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An open letter to the next CCP artistic director

Dear Colleague, “Break a leg!” for taking on what could be the best arts management post in the country.   I wish you the most fulfilling time as you immerse in the hundreds of arts-related activities during your tenure. You will have the great fortune of experiencing and learning from hundreds of “live” shows in the...

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Fire at the ‘National Theater’

The photos taken by professional and amateur photographers on June 17 told the disheartening story: The grande dame Manila Metropolitan Theater, or simply the Met, one of the cultural shrines of the antebellum period (along with the Manila Grand Opera House), fronting Liwasang Bonifacio—don’t call it Lawton—was on fire. Smoke billowed from the first floor...