Tuesday, November 27, 2012

Pleasurable Entertainment in the 18th Deaf Festival Cultural Show

The well-known School of Deaf Education and Applied Studies (SDEAS) department has made a wonderful celebration of the famous annual week-long Deaf Festival inside the De La Salle-College of Saint Benilde (DLS-CSB) Taft Campus, Manila  with its exceptional theme “18th Deaf Festival: Creativity Beyond Limits”  last November 19-24, 2012. It was a successful event that created more fun and enjoyment.

Ma. Isabel Cabbab, a new Benildean Press Corps (BPC) Deaf writer, was the 18th Deaf Festival chairperson, and Mr. Michael Vea, the current president of Philippines Sports Federation of the Deaf (PSFD) and an SDEAS English faculty, was the festival adviser. The festival's head committees were Roejen Fernandez (Vice-chairperson), Lan Kimura (Secretary), Armhel Joice Ganotice (Marketing), Ira Ortiz (Bazaar), Angelo Maniago (Finance), Mark Daniel Laygo (Promotion), Melvin Orevillo (Exhibit), Paul Bryan Gaveria (Entertainment Program), Grace Pico (Activity), Gladys Bisnar (Logistics), Yobbo Garcia (Documentation), and Mark Gil Punzal (Registration).

The opening program started with a Holy Mass arranged by SDEAS which was held in Augusto Rosario Gonzalez Theater 5th floor, Mutien Marie Hall inside DLS-CSB Taft Campus at 9:30 am-10:30am last November 19, and was attended by numerous BAPDST and DLPC students, SDEAS faculties and administrators, and other visitors and participants. The Holy Eucharist was a peaceful, satisfying and beautiful one because of the wonderful performance by the Deaf performers for the opening and blessing of the Deaf Festival. The exhibit, which was filled of different photos of the past Deaf Festival events, was opened shortly after the mass. The traditional ribbon cutting was made by Ms. Agnes Canayon, Director of Center for Deaf Esteem and Formation (C-DEAF) and Mr. Leonides D. Sulse, Chairperson of Center for Academics (C-Acads). The Deaf Benildean community and SDEAS faculties applauded and were filled of joy.

The week-long event was filled with many different activities such as seminars including “How House Bill Becomes a Law” (HB 6079) prepared by Mr. Mackie Calbay, “Making Your Money Grow” prepared by Center for Partnership and Development, and “Healthy Living Session” which promoted information and awareness on food health and nutritional care, workshops including “Let’s Learn Filipino Sign Language,” Photography,” and “Cooking with Chef Enriquez," the Deaf Got Talent, Deaf Master Chef, Sports fest on Volleyball and Basketball, Deaf Quiz Bee, Taekwondo Lesson, and selected Deaf fun games including puzzle race, Deaf Whiz Quiz game, and many more.

One of the highlights and best Deaf Festival activities was the closing program entitled “Deaf Festival Cultural Show”  which started at 6:00pm until 9:00pm. The cultural presentation started with the singing of the “Lupang Hinirang” accompanied by a Filipino folk dance by the Silent Steps while the audience stood as a respect to the Philippine national anthem. The opening remarks and inspirational message was given by the C-Acads Chairperson Mr. Leo Sulse. In his speech, he thanked the audience for coming to watch the cultural show. He also praised and congratulated the Deaf Festival head committees for making this big event in triumph through their hard work as a team. “Being hardworking and creative is a pleasing and good characteristic as a team. The theme 'Creativity Beyond Limits' denotes the unlimited skills and creativity of the Deaf, particularly those who are involved in accomplishing and making this cultural show successful. Every Deaf has a hidden talent and we should know the deepest meaning of the theme. I’m hoping that it is not only during the Deaf Festival event that we are always creative but you should use it in many ways at any time to achieve your dreams and goals."

There were many great and beautiful dance presentations that the Silent Steps had performed such as hip hop and Filipino native dance. They did it admirably while they wore different dance costumes. One of these was the Father and Son’s very inspiring performance. Rastaman Landero and his hearing father made the crowd feel overwhelmed with their song number as the father sang and played the guitar while Rastaman interpreted it through singing and using Filipino sign language. The two hosts Ms. Jessel Arriola and Roejen Fernandez asked Rastaman on how he performed concurrently with his father’s tone using FSL despite of being Deaf. He answered, “My father always supports me in achieving what I want to be. He knows I am Deaf and I cannot hear his voice and guitar, but I can feel it and he helped me to work it out until I succeeded in doing it.”

There was also a dance number from a different deaf school that performed a Filipino folk dance (tune of the farm) and the quasi-bird or birdie was dancing. The second was remarkable and eye-catching as they played excellently and expressively. Moreover, the winners of the games and Deaf contests were announced and have been given prizes.

The appearance of the three very amusing and artistic hosts Nathaniel Macariola, Kenneth “Ken” Yadan and Jimmy Cacut tickled the Deaf and hearing viewers and made them burst into laughter with their jokes even up until the last part of the program. It was really one of the most enjoyable entertainments. The three were well suited to each other and they were naturally humorous. They were even being compared to the comedians and hosts of Eat Bulaga Tito Vic and Joey when it comes to making the audience laugh and giggle. However, Nathaniel Macariola, the most humorous, made a remarkable performance on telling  two funny stories, the “Cut Tongue Becomes Deaf Aswang” and “Cop Leo Shoots Zombie." The final program was done by Mr. Mackie Calbay who encouraged the crowd to help him campaign and pursue the House Bill 6079. He explained that if the bill will be passed into law, the Deaf community will receive good benefits from the government and will get equal opportunities. At the end of the show, the video displayed the works and activities of the week-long Deaf Festival and the existence of its adviser, chairperson, vice-chairperson, and head committees.  The hosts were Lan Kimura, Richard Ibazebo, Roejen Fernandez, Nathaniel Macariola, Kenneth Yadan, Jimmy Cacut, Justine Camille Javier,  Ms. Jessel Arriola, and Ms. Diana Pria Banas.

The Deaf Festival is a genuine part of the Deaf culture and will always be a part of the lives of the Deaf community. It symbolizes the unity and harmony among the Deaf Filipinos in all over the Philippines and among the hearing community as well as their hearing parents, friends, and loved ones who strongly support  the Deaf community. I believe that the Deaf Festival is not only for the Deaf people to participate, but also open for the hearing Benildeans and outsiders who want to take a glimpse of the Deaf culture and community. Every person has the right to interact to one another and not to live in marginalization. Deaf Festival is truly an amazing legendary that has remained through the years. The Deaf people love it knowing that it shows their creativity, skills, and cleverness in their own ways. It does prove their self identities as Deaf in capital “D”.  Long Live Deaf Festival! Till we meet again next year.

by: Ma. Jesusa Charisma Nofies
Edited by: Marina Viktoria De Los Reyes

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