"I support her, of course, because we are precisely of the same orientation."
By JOSEPH G. LARIOSA
(© 2018 Journal GlobaLinks)
CHICAGO (JGL) – Like father, like daughter.
Philippine National Commission for Culture and the Arts Chair Virgilio “Alma Rio” S. Almario told the philamessenger.com in an exclusive video interview Friday (June 15) in
Chicago, Illinois that he “supports” his daughter's call for “revolution” “because we are precisely of the same orientation. You like to continuously pursue a revolution of consciousness in the Philippines.” Please view the videoclip below.
Mr. Almario, 74, who is mandated by law to “advise the President of the Philippines on matters pertaining to culture and the arts,” was responding to a question posed by this reporter if he supports his daughter, Ani Rosa Almario-David's call for revolution in her Commencement speech before more than 2,000 graduates of Ateneo de Manila University in the Philippines last May 26.
The Filipino National Artist on Literature told this reporter when asked about his daughter's advocacy, “No comment. Marami na ang nangyari (Many things have happened) after this. Maraming (Many) trolls have attacked my daughter, my whole family, including me. And I don’t want to respond to whatever they are saying against my daughter. I support her, of course, because we are precisely of the same orientation. You like to continuously pursue a revolution of consciousness in the Philippines.”
RESIST! RESIST! RESIST!
ANI ROSA ALMARIO-DAVID, Ph. D., told more than 2,000 graduates of Ateneo de Manila University last May 26 that “Our present national situation calls for a revolution. And quoting the (Marcos pre-martial Ateneo students') manifesto (dated Nov. 27, 1968, 'Down from the Hill') again, Ateneans have the moral intellectual obligation to lead this revolution.
“Batch 2018, these are difficult times, and so our country ask him to muster everything that Ateneo has given you. All your magis and your cura personalis (Latin for “care for the whole person.”) be the voice of the voiceless, be the courage of the weak. Be truth. Be hope. Resist! Resist! Resist!” (JGL Screenshot of Ateneo Facebook video clip)
His daughter obtained her Bachelor of Science in Economics degree and Doctorate in Curriculum Development at the University of the Philippines and earned her Master’s degree in Education, specializing in learning, design and technology at the Stanford University in California on a Fulbright scholarship.
In her speech (please view excerpts of the video clip below of her speech), the young Almario told the graduates, “There is a degradation of morals, twisting of truth and widespread injustice. Most Filipinos are demoralized and frustrated with recent events for they are afraid to speak up.
“DOWN FROM THE HILL”
“And I believe that Ateneans mentored by the very best minds and nurtured in this very special community will not be overwhelmed by this culture of fear. Our present national situation calls for a revolution. And quoting the (Marcos pre-martial law Ateneo students') manifesto (dated Nov. 27,1968, 'Down from the Hill') again, Ateneans have the moral intellectual obligation to lead this revolution.
“Batch 2018, these are difficult times, and so our country ask him to muster everything that Ateneo has given you.
“All your magis and your cura personalis (Latin for “care for the whole person.”) be the voice of the voiceless, be the courage of the weak. Be truth. Be hope. Resist! Resist! Resist!”
HEADLINE CALLING FOR REVOLUTION!
THE NEWS CLIP of this headline story of the Philippine Daily Inquirer was shown by this reporter, Joseph G. Lariosa, to Mr. Virgilio S. Almario, chair of the National Commission for Culture and the Arts, for his comment on June 15 inside the Newberry Library in Chicago, Illinois after he delivered a lecture titled, “Valuing the Priceless: The Importance of Research in Philippine Arts and Cultural Preservation.” (JGL Screenshot of the Philippine Daily Inquirer website)
Mr. Almario, chair of the Komisyon sa Wikang Filipino (Commission on National Language), was in Chicago as guest of the Philippine Consulate to deliver a lecture titled, “Valuing the Priceless: The Importance of Research in Philippine Arts and Cultural Preservation" on Friday, June 15, at the Towner Fellows’ Lounge of the Newberry Library.
After his lecture, he and Consul General Gina A. Jamoralin were led by the president of Newberry Library, David Spadafora, to view in the Newberry Library collections that included letters written by Jose Rizal to a colleague in Germany about Filipino language, Tagalog mostly and the first printing of original water colors by Damian Domingo, father of Filipino painting, a set of 29 drawings of people in the Philippines focused on fashion, dress and different types of people and occupations. This collection has been digitized and is freely available online, according to Will Hansen, Director of Reader Services and Curator of Americana in the Newberry Library.
It was in the Newberry Library where Mr. Almario bought facsimiles of two old editions of Florante at Laura to make an annotation and corrections and re-create the possible original texts of the epic romantic poem that inspired the Philippine Revolution.
FLORANTE AT LAURA “WERE FAULTY”
Mr. Almario said the existing texts of Florante at Laura used in Philippine schools “were faulty” specially texts of Filipino classic literature from the Spanish period. He said it was a “third-class” poet hired by publisher, Philippine Education Company, who made “'erroneous revisions or 'corrections' without actual or verifiable basis.”
VIEWING RIZAL'S WRITINGS:
PHILIPPINE NATIONAL COMMISSION FOR CULTURE AND THE ARTS CHAIR Virgilio S. Almario (second from left) is talking to another guest while viewing some of the writings of Jose Rizal as part of the Filipiniana collections being held by the Newberry Library in Chicago, Illinois on June 15 after delivering a lecture titled, “Valuing the Priceless: The Importance of Research in Philippine Arts and Cultural Preservation” at the Towner Fellows’ Lounge of the Newberry Library. At extreme right is Will Hansen, Director of Reader Services and Curator of Americana in the Newberry Library (JGL Photo by JOSEPH G. LARIOSA)
As chair of Komisyon sa Wikang Filipino, Mr. Almario became one of the 15 members of the Board of Commissioners that governs the National Commission for Culture and the Arts passed by the Philippine Congress as Republic Act 7356 that became National Commission for Culture and the Arts (NCAA). NCAA is “responsible for culture and the arts in the Philippines — and, if not in the name, the de facto Ministry of Culture,” according to its website. NCAA is under the Office of the President.
To become chair of NCAA, one has to be elected for a term of two years by 11 representatives from the legislative, executive, and 4 representatives from the private sectors called the Board of Commissioners.
The current Board of Commissioners includes among others Sen. Francis G. Escudero as chair of the Senate Committee on Education, Arts and Culture and Rep. Ramon H. Durano as chairman of House Committee on Basic Education and Culture.
The other members of the board are Annalyn M. Sevilla, Commissioner (Undersecretary for Finance-Budget and Performance Monitoring, Department of Education); Alma Rita R. Jimenez, Commissioner (Undersecretary for Tourism Regulation, Coordination, and Resource Generation, Department of Tourism); Rene R. Escalante, Commissioner (Chairman, National Historical Commission of the Philippines): Jeremy R. Barns, Commissioner (Director IV, National Museum): Ceasar Gilbert Q. Adriano, Commissioner (Director IV, National Library of the Philippines); Victorino Mapa Manalo, Commissioner (Executive Director, National Archives of the Philippines); Arsenio J. Lizaso, Commissioner (President, Cultural Center of the Philippines); and Rico S. Pableo, Jr., (Executive Director, National Commission for Culture and the Arts).
4 MEMBERS FROM THE PRIVATE SECTOR
The four members from the private sectors are Teddy O. Co, Commissioner for the Arts/Head, Subcommission on the Arts; Orlando B. Magno, Commissioner for Cultural Dissemination /Head, Subcommission on Cultural Dissemination; Harold Ll. Rentoria, OSA, Commissioner for Cultural Heritage/Head, Subcommission on Cultural Heritage; and
Alphonsus D. Tesoro, Commissioner for Cultural Communities and Traditional Arts/Head, Subcommission on Cultural Communities and Traditional Arts.
PHOTO OP WITH JOURNALIST:
FEDORA HAT-WEARING National Commission for Culture and the Arts Chair Virgilio S. Almario smiles during a photo op with Joseph G. Lariosa of the philamessenger.com after his lecture and interview at the Towner Fellows' Lounge of the Newberry Library in Chicago, Illinois on board a SUV that would rush him to O'Hare International Airport en route to the Philippines. (JGL Photo courtesy of Anna Liza Alcantara, Cultural Officer of the Philippine Consulate)
In 1987, then President Corazon C. Aquino signed Executive Order No. 118, creating the Presidential Commission on Culture and Arts. Five years later, in 1992, this presidential directive was enacted into law– Republic Act 7356, creating the National Commission for Culture and the Arts (NCCA). The original bill was jointly authored by Senators Edgardo Angara, Heherson Alvarez, Leticia Ramos Shahani, and Congressman Carlos Padilla.
The National Commission for Culture and the Arts (NCCA) is the overall policy-making body, coordinating, and grants-giving agency for the preservation, development and promotion of Philippine arts and culture; an executing agency for the policies it formulates; and is tasked to administer the National Endowment Fund for Culture and the Arts (NEFCA) — fund exclusively for the implementation of culture and arts programs and projects.
Mr. Almario is serving a two-year term from 2017 up to 2019 as NCAA chair. A poet and literary historian, Mr. Almario was declared as a national artist in 2003. He has published 12 poetry books in a span of three decades. Some of his influential works include Makinasyon and Peregrinasyon (Machination and Peregrenation), and his famed trilogy Doktrinang Anakpawis (Doctrine of the Masses), Mga Retrato at Rekwerdo (Photos and Souvenirs) and Muli, Sa Kandungan ng Lupa (Again, On The Lap Of The Ground).
Mr. Almario came from Washington, D.C. where he was a featured speaker on “Philippine Culture & Arts: Reflections by Virgilio S. Almario” held at the Carlos P. Romulo Hall of the Philippine Embassy on June 11 together with Georgetown University Professor Erwin Tiongson and engaged a solid Washington crowd in discussing several Filipino artists who left imprints in the history of Washington, D.C. Included in the list are visual artists Romeo Tabuena, the Blanco family, and Guillermo Tolentino; and writers Jose Garcia Villa, Bienvenido Santos, Manuel Viray, and Arturo Rotor.
When asked to address Filipino artists in the diaspora, Chairman Almario stated, “You are citizens of the Philippines, which we also have to recognize and if possible, help. If you are a writer or an artist, then it is the duty of the National Commission for Culture and the Arts to give you support so that you can be more fulfilled in your profession.”
On June 10, he joined the Philippine Ambassador to the U.S. Jose Manuel G. Romualdez in launching the Sentro Rizal Washington DC and the Hibla ng Lahing Filipino (Textiles of the Filipino People) Traveling Exhibition featuring Pińa-Seda: Pineapple and Silk Cloths from the Tropics.
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