Arts & Culture

13 Must-See Arts and Culture Events in June 2019

June 2019 has an unusually large assortment of arts and culture events, likely due to several celebrations taking place this year.
IMAGE FÊTE DE LA MUSIQUE, SWAN LAKE PRESS RELEASE, YVETTE FERNANDEZ
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June 2019 has an unusually large assortment of arts and culture events, likely due to several celebrations taking place this year. Not only is it the 25th anniversary of metro-wide musical festival Fete de la Musique, but the Cultural Center of the Philippines (CCP) is also celebrating its 50th year. Couple those with June being both Philippine Independence Month and International LGBT Pride Month, you have a slew of events, exhibitions, and shows happening all at once.

Here are some of the more notable events announced thus far, with many more likely to pop up in the coming days:

June 1 to July 6: Flux, by Bea Valdes


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Bea Valdes’ second solo exhibition with Silverlens Galleries explores the temporal instability of the creative process, in which reality is conceived, altered, destroyed, and recreated simultaneously within the experience of a single moment. The large scale installation and sculpture that make up Flux invite viewers to get lost in this constant state of becoming, and in doing so, find themselves intimately involved with the artist’s work.

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June 1 to July 6: The Quality of Sunlight is a Filter Through Which Our Thoughts and Feelings Pass, by Catalina Africa



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Showing alongside Valdes’ own exhibition is a collection of paintings, objects, and video that toy with the genre of landscape painting through Catalina Africa’s unique language of abstraction. The artist depicts the terrain around her as it translates into emotional states, resulting in a remarkably direct, almost-tactile visual experience. 

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June 8 and 9: Laro at Arts Above

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Floy Quintos’ Laro—a Filipino adaptation of Arthur Schnitzler’s controversial La Ronde—presents an emotionally brutal depiction of sex as currency within the lives of ten gay men. The play is a series of 11 duets, in which each of the ten leads takes turns trading scene partners, culminating in a rather risqué, orgiastic epilogue. As their degrees of separation from each other blur, so do the lines between love, hate, desperation, and hope.

Laro, directed by John Mark Yap, will be running on June 8 and 9 at Arts Above on West Avenue, Quezon City. The play is co-presented by The Red Whistle, an HIV & AIDS advocacy organization. Tickets are available at this link.

June 11: Met Opera HD: Norma at Greenbelt 3

For the final scheduled presentation of Met Opera HD, the CCP’s project to create a close-to-life simulation of watching a live show at the Metropolitan Opera of New York, Vincenzo Bellini’s Norma will be screening at Greenbelt 3. The two-act tragedy tells the story of Norma, a priestess who broke her vow of chastity for the Roman proconsul Pollione, who later has an affair despite fathering two children with Norma.

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Tickets for the June 11, 6:30 p.m. screening are available at Greenbelt 3 cinemas. 

June 14 to 22: Moscow Ballet's La Classique


For many, Peter Tchaikovsky’s Swan Lake is their introduction to watching classical ballet. The score, the original choreography by Marius Petipa and Lev Ivanov, and the tragic romance between Prince Siegfried and his Swan Queen have never failed to leave a lasting impression on its audiences.

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From June 14 to 22, balletomanes will get the chance to revisit the iconic ballet when visiting company Moscow Ballet stages the performance at the New Frontier Theater in Araneta Center, Quezon City. The Russian ballet company’s classical choreography arm “La Classique” had enlisted the talents of Bolshoi Theater principal dancers Nina Kaptsova and Alexander Volchkov for its Manila run.

Adding to the grandeur of the affair, La Classique’s production will be accompanied by live music from the Russian Symphony Orchestra, under the helm of conductor Yaroslav Tkalenko. —HANNAH LAZATIN

Tickets to the performances from June 14 onward are currently available at Ticketnet outlets and online at ticketnet.com.ph.

June 14 to July 7: Beautiful: The Carole King Musical at Meralco Theater

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Atlantis Theatrical Entertainment Group brings in an incredibly talented cast for Beautiful, a musical inspired by the life and songs of Carole King. Kayla Rivera (In the Heights, Rock of Ages, Side Show) plays the award-winning songwriter behind timeless pieces like “You’ve Got a Friend,” “It’s Too Late,” and “Will You Still Love Me Tomorrow?”

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Joining Rivera is a veritable who’s who of some of the finest performers to have worked with Atlantis: Nick Varricchio, Mikkie Bradshaw-Volante, George Schulze, Gab Pangilinan, Jill Peña, Teetin Villanueva, Maronne Cruz, Nelsito Gomez, Jep Go, Jamie Wilson, and Carla Guevara Laforteza. Rounding out the cast are Tim Pavino, Markus Mann, Gabby Padilla, Dean Rosen, and Alex Reyes.

Tickets are available via Ticketworld.

Ongoing until June 17: Capturing the Spirit, by Mia Herbosa

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A collection of paintings—mostly portraits—becomes Mia Herbosa’s homage to the people, objects, and concepts that bear significance to the artist’s experience of life. Together, they tell the story of her personal growth, as well as her appreciation for their willingness to let her quietly observe their existence through her work.

Capturing the Spirit is currently on display at Altro Mondo Creative Space, Chino Roces Avenue, Makati.

June 19 to July 7: Virgin Labfest 15: Titibok-Tibok at CCP

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On its 15th year of presenting “unpublished, unstaged, untried, and untested” works for theater, the Virgin LabFest (VLF) brings 12 all-new, one-act pieces to the CCP stage. The event has proven to be a showcase of Philippine theater’s best undiscovered writers and performers over the years while continuing to be a laboratory for exciting new explorations in the art form.

This year, VLF will also be restaging three of the best plays from the previous year: Dustin Celestino’s Mga Eksena sa Buhay ng Kontrabida, Allan Lopez’s River Lethe, and Carlo Vergara’s Edgar Allan Hemingway.

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Register for tickets at this link.

June 22: The Spectacular Mid-Year Auction at Leon Gallery

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Leon Gallery’s Spectacular Mid-Year Auction is one of the most highly anticipated yearly events among arts collectors, with the gallery offering some truly priceless works for interested bidders. This year is no different as a “Sabel” by BenCab, Frederico Aguilar Alcuaz’s “Tres Marias,” and Fernando Amorsolo’s “Tobacco Maiden” are up for auction, among other works, objets d’art, and historical documents.

A special preview for the auction will be held at Leon Gallery on June 19, with the actual auction beginning on June 22, 2 p.m., also at the gallery.

June 22 to 23: Noli Me Tangere: The Opera at CCP Main Theater

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For the Philippines’ Independence Month, CCP will be staging Noli Me Tangere: The Opera, based on the novel by national hero Dr. Jose Rizal. Directed by Jerry Sibal, with music by Felipe de Leon and libretto by Guillermo Tolentino, the classic opera tells the story of Filipinos from differing social classes facing abuse and oppression under Spanish colonial rule.

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Register for tickets at this link.

June 22, 28, and 29: Fete de la Musique



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The 25th annual Fete de la Musique—a city-wide music festival—promises to be the biggest one yet, with about 50 pocket stages being set up across the metro as part of the celebrations, as well as several regional stages in locales such as Baguio, Pampanga, Palawan, and Bulacan. Some of the biggest names in the local music scene will be participating at the main stages, located in Makati on June 22 and in Intramuros on the 28th.

Those looking to celebrate Pride Month might be particularly interested in Pineapple Lab’s Queer as Fete: Pride Stage on June 22, 8 p.m.

June 29: Metro Manila Pride

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Speaking of Pride, the annual Metro Manila Pride March and Festival will be held on June 29, 12 p.m., at the Marikina Sports Center. Though there will be art and performances by members of the Filipino LGBTQ+ community, the event is mainly one of sociocultural awareness. The theme for 2019 is #ResistTogether, a call for solidarity in action against LGBTQ+ discrimination. With the passage of the SOGIE Equality Bill inexplicably failing to get approval this month, expect that action to be stronger and louder than ever before.

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June 29 to 30: Tanghalang Naming Tahanan, by the Philippine Madrigal Singers

Home is where our heART is. Join us as we celebrate the glorious five decades of the Cultural Center of the...

Posted by Philippine Madrigal Singers on Saturday, June 1, 2019

The Philippine Madrigal Singers, one of the country’s most prestigious choir groups, will be celebrating the 50th anniversary of the CCP with a concert on June 29 and 30. The CCP has long supported the 56-year old group, staging countless performances over the course of five decades. Tanghalang Naming Tahanan is perhaps the most poetic way the Madrigal Singers can show their love and appreciation for the stage that they’ve called home all these years.

<>Tickets are available via Ticketworld.

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