In support of Filipino talent
MANILA, Philippines – The Philippines is a country known for its talented and passionate artists. We have them all – from dancers, singers, actors and actresses to sound engineers, light designers and set designers.
Sadly, sometimes due to the lack of funds or support for the local performing arts industry, individuals feel discouraged to make the arts a full time profession.
Hence, the Original Pilipino Performing Arts Foundation (OPPA) was formed. Its founding chairman, Dr Andrew Tan, believes that Filipino performance arts have the potential to become globally competitive. He also feels strongly about continuously developing homegrown talent both in the academe and industry.
Kingson Sian, chairman of OPPA Foundation, says, “There is a vibrant tradition of performing arts in the country and a considerable number of groups devoted to the craft. Still, there is a lot more work to be done in order to gain wider public interest and truly establish the Philippines as a global center of live entertainment.”
OPPA is currently collaborating with the academe and the local performing arts industry to meet their objectives of supporting, educating, and nurturing the talents of both the youth and professionals to become world-class artists.
Partner schools include St Scholastica’s College, University of the Philippines, MINT College and De La Salle - College of St Benilde. Scholarships that provide financial support, as well as opportunities to work in actual productions and attend workshops are just a part of OPPA’s offerings.
OPPA President Menchu Lauchengco–Yulo has been involved in theater since she was 15. “I had no training in the theater. I joined because I loved it. I love to perform and I literally learned by making mistakes onstage,” she says. Experiencing the struggles and challenges in theater made her even more passionate to help future generations who have the talent and drive to make it in the industry.
The foundation’s goal is to establish a strong foundation for students, or anyone who aspires to make performance art their profession, as well as supporting the veterans in the industry to continue making magic and doing what they love. They would also like to make it a sustainable profession and not just a hobby.
The members of the OPPA board of trustees were also present in the launch and showed their support for the foundation.
Yulo adds, “Our next step would really be to find the scholars so that they will be ready for the next school year, which will be in June or August, depending on the schools. Hopefully, when the graduates come in March, we will already be able to find which scholars to send. We’re taking it one step at a time.” – Rappler.com