ILOILO CITY – Iloilo City and Guimaras province are among the first stops of the Philippine Philharmonic Orchestra's (PPO) free concert to be held outside of Metro Manila since the start of the health pandemic.
Gabriel Felix Umadhay, co-chairperson of the Iloilo Dinagyang Festival, said the three-leg concert will be held in Guimaras on Jan. 11, and on Jan. 13 and 14 here.
"This allows us to be the center of tourism activities in the whole Philippines. Meaning we have spaces available for concerts, people are appreciative of arts and talents. Because we want to be the art capital, so it's not just the virtual arts, but also music, but also dances," Umadhay said in an interview on Tuesday.
He added that it will also showcase the readiness of the city for MICE (meetings, incentives, convention, and exhibitions) and tourism activities, its historical beauty, and the support of the local government unit in similar events.
The holding of the concert was upon the invitation of former senator Franklin Drilon and the city government through Mayor Jerry Treñas and the Iloilo Festivals Foundation Inc.
The concert here will be at the Iloilo Convention Center on Jan. 13 and at the Plaza Libertad the next day. Both are open to the public on a first come, first served basis.
"Come as you are, you don't have to dress up, this is the night of appreciating music," Umadhay added.
In a press statement on Tuesday, the Guimaras provincial government said the concert will be held at 7 p.m. at the Guimaras Museum Grounds in Barangay San Miguel, Jordan town.
Governor JC Rahman Nava said the special musical feast aims to bring music closer to the people as the province transitions into more relaxed health and safety protocols and economic recovery.
It is also an opportunity for Guimaras to promote itself as an events and agri-tourism destination.
It will be the first time that the province will host the performance of the country's leading musical ensemble while Iloilo City last hosted their concert in March 2018.
The 70- to 80- member chorale, under the baton of Maestro Herminigildo Ranera, will perform a repertoire consisting of classical, Broadway, kundiman and other popular Filipino songs.
They will also be joined by tenors and sopranos of chorale groups based in this city. (PNA)