A nation united in songs

Published July 30, 2022, 9:48 PM

by Manila Bulletin

Sing Philippines Youth choir reunites for an outreach music camp

IN UNISON Sing Philippines Youth Choir reunites for an outreach music camp and performance

After two and a half years of not being able to physically sing together, the Sing Philippines Youth Choir (SPYC) Tour Group was finally reunited and organized by the Cultural Center of the Philippines (CCP) Cultural Exchange Department (CED) in partnership with the Andrea O. Veneracion (AOV) Sing Philippines Foundation and the Philippine Madrigal Singers for an outreach music camp and performance held from July 18 to 24 in San Jose Del Monte City, Bulacan and the CCP.  The project was a continuation of the group’s choral training that began in 2019 in Batangas and Bohol, but was forced to shift to virtual in 2020 due to the pandemic.

‘In the arts, such as in singing, the moment we claim to know everything is the moment we begin to deteriorate.’

First organized and launched in 2014, the first batch of SPYC was participated by 50 choristers from 19 provinces across the country who underwent a professional weeklong music camp under MADZ choirmaster Mark Anthony Carpio. The Sing Philippines movement brings to life national artist Andrea O. Veneracion’s vision of a nation singing in harmony and united in songs.  The second batch was organized in 2016 which added a new set of 50 singers from 26 provinces, the third batch in 2018 had 51 singers from 37 provinces/cities and the 4th batch last year composed of 59 singers from 25 provinces had a virtual training and performance.  To date, the SPYC totals to 213 singers from 56 local communities all over the country.

Carpio underscores the importance of a continuous training and performing together for chorale singers. “In the arts, such as in singing, the moment we claim to know everything is the moment we begin to deteriorate,” she said. Singing, in whatever form, may be compared to swimming: the only way to be better and move forward is to keep on swimming.”

“We are grateful to be able to go back (physically) to the local communities to implement our outreach programs,” said Chinggay Jasareno-Bernardo, CCP-CED manager. “The artists and cultural workers are really happy to be able to engage once again in creative and cultural work. It means a lot to them and to us because in the past two and a half years of the pandemic, we have seen how the arts have helped many people and communities cope with various struggles in life. This is the reason we pursue our mission to contribute to the healing process by way of our outreach programs.”

This year’s music camp is hosted by the City of San Jose Del Monte in Bulacan through its Tourism Operations Office.  The SPYC tour group’s outreach performance at Our Lady of Lourdes grotto shrine in San Jose Del Monte City, Bulacan on July 22 was streamed live via the CCP-CED Facebook (FB) page.

 
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