Here’s what to expect at the CCP’s first children’s biennale

Published October 28, 2020, 11:26 AM

by John Legaspi

A month-long series of online creative activities await kids this November

From painting refrigerator artworks to singing childish tunes, getting kids into art has many developmental benefits. The way they handle a paint brush can improve their motor skills. Counting colors and following a beat gives them their first lesson on mathematics. Being able to express themselves through different forms of art helps boost their confidence. So if you’re thinking that craft time is just a way for them to be distracted, think again.

To help young minds thrive in creativity, the Cultural Center of the Philippines (CCP) launches a month-long online creative expression biennale for children this November.

Dubbed “Arts eXpress: CCP Children’s Biennale,” the series of events aims to encourage and develop creativity and artistic expression in children, create new works/activities to focus on children’s appreciation and value for the arts, and engage the participation of the guardians and parents in sustaining the appreciation for the arts.

The biennale will kick off on Oct. 31, 4 p.m., via the CCP Facebook page, with a short program led by CCP chairperson Margie Moran-Floirendo, vice president and artistic director Chris Millado, and board member Nikki Junia.

No shrills, just applause!

After ceremonies led by CCP leaders, kids and families will have an afternoon of music with the Tricks and Musical Treats: A PPO Family Concert at 4:20 p.m. Titled A Virtual Adventure in Camp Melodia, the annual orchestra appreciation concert moves to the online platform. Directed by Liesl Batucan, the concert will feature members of the Philippine Philharmonic Orchestra. Everyone is encouraged to watch it in their best costume.

At 5:45 p.m., MALA: Ibong Adarna will virtually fly to bring to life the story of the mythical bird through puppetry. Directed by Xian Lim, the show is also part of the outreach project of CCP president Arsenio Lizaso, under the Sining Sigla program.

New online hangout

CCP also launches the Batang Sining Facebook page as a platform for creative expression and collaboration opportunities of arts content for children, parents/guardians, and teachers. Originally conceptualized by the late Rene Villanueva and Hermie Beltran, Batang Sining started as a workshop in 1989 primarily focused on introducing the child to the different art forms and discovering for themselves their own creative expressions.

November is for child’s ‘play’

For the whole month of November, children can join the different stations of activities: Curtains Up!, Pelikulit, and many more. 

In Curtains Up!, kids are treated to new and re-purposed ICYMI (in-case-you-missed-it) performances in theater, dance, and music every Sunday, at 4 p.m.

On Nov. 1, Tanghalang Pilipino collaborates with Anino Shadowplay Collective for a series of performances based on children’s books, which will be collectively known as Pamanang Pahina. The performances are: Mga Giyera sa Katawan ni Mark, written by Dr. Luis P. Gatmaitan, illustrated by Ariel Santillan; Ang Bagong Kaibigan ni Bing Butiki written by Yna Reyes, illustrated by Jason Moss; and May Mga Lihim Kami ni Ingkong, written by Dr. Luis P. Gatmaitan, illustrated by Beth Parrocha-Doctolero.

Young soprano Alexa Kaufman and opera performer Gerphil Flores will share their experiences and serenade the young audiences in Small Voice happening on Nov. 8. Alexa will share her story when she discovers her small voice and develops it through practice and singing. Gerphil will talk about the challenges she has experienced singing at an opera.

Witness the classic tale of Cinderella comes to life in Philippine Ballet Theater’s (PBT) Cinderella on Nov.15. Featuring the choreography of Ron Jaynario, the PBT performance will unravel an epic tale of euphoric dreams and timeless love.

Catch Mga Kuwentong Karapat-Dapat on Nov. 22.  This show features three CANVAS published stories; “Tahan Na, Tahanan,” “Nadia and the Blue Stars,” and “Inang Kalikasan’s Bad Hair Day.” Aimed to communicate value of home, society, and environment, the storytelling event is a collaboration of different art forms such as shadow play, dance, and music as performed by artist partners Anima Tierra, Daloy Dance Company, and Anino Shadowplay Collective, with performance and direction by Abner Delina Jr. a.k.a Kuya Fidel of Batibot.

After every Curtains Up!, there will be a screening of short animation films for kids through the Pelikulit. 

Crafts time

Arts eXpress is all about arts workshops for children aged eight to 12 years old. Anino Shadow Collective will teach shadow play on Nov. 6, 10 a.m. Children can learn the basics of rondalla playing (banduria) on Nov. 13 (open session) at 10:00 a.m.; follow up classes on Zoom will be on Nov. 14, 21, 28, and Dec. 5, 10 a.m.

Dr. Luis Gatmaitan introduces kids to storybook writing in Batang Sining: Let’s Write and Tell A Story on Nov. 20, 10 a.m., and teach how to make your own book in Batang Sining: Book Making on Nov. 21, 10 a.m.

Visual artist Avie Felix asks kids “What’s in a Painting?” on Nov. 13, 11 a.m.  Children learn to make books using cut outs in Peek A Book Illustration Workshop on Nov. 14, 10 a.m. Philippine Ambassador of Puppetry Wanlu Lunaria will do a basic puppetry workshop on Nov. 27, 10 a.m.

Start them young

Pre-school kids will have a fun time with Arts Playground.

MusikGarten’s Nikki Junia will have various music events targeted for different children demography. Babies will get their first art exposure in Music and Chants for Babies (0-18 months) on Nov. 7; toddlers get to try fun activities in Sing and Groove with Tots (up to three years old) on Nov. 14; young children learn the art basics in Art Workshop (six to eight years old) and do snippets of art lesson in Art Bits (six to eight years old) on Nov. 21. All events will be at 9 a.m.

CCP Dance Workshop School teaches basic dance movements for young children in Dance Play on Nov. 7 and 28, 10 a.m.

Arts Connect aims to have cultural exchange and appreciation among children from different communities. Performance artists Mae Paner, Kawa, and J.K. Anicoche, with Komunidad X, will exchange stories with street kids in Komunibike on Nov. 24.

Kutitap children from various IP communities will share their culture and traditions, including food, dance, and music to the children participants of Art Trek on Nov. 19 and 26, 4 p.m.

Other special events of the children’s biennale include: a book launch and workshops of “Cely’s Crocodile (Life and art of Araceli Dans Lee)” on Nov. 21, 3 p.m., and e-book launch and storytelling of “Sa Pagbabasa Hindi Ka Nag-iisa” on Nov. 27, 4 p.m. 

The CCP Children’s Biennale will culminate on Nov. 29, with a closing program.

 
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