USTGS-CCCPET facilitates Festival Management Workshop for Samar LGUs

The University of Santo Tomas Graduate School Center for Conservation of Cultural Property and Environment in the Tropics (USTGS-CCCPET) has conceptualized and facilitated the unique and highly anticipated “Pamamahala ng Pistang Pamana: Festival Management Workshop for Samar Province”. This workshop, with the primary objectives of promoting culture and research-based festivals and sharing successful festival management strategies, is an exclusive platform that offers the rare opportunity to share examples of successful festival management strategies, case studies, and valuable lessons from academic and industry experts.  

Recognizing the challenges in festivals in the Philippines, which have sometimes become overly commercialized, misappropriated, and misrepresented, USTGS-GSCCCPET strongly advocates for culture and research-based festivals, offering an inspiring vision for the future of our cultural celebrations. 

The 5-day workshop, which includes a variety of lectures, case studies, and workshops, commenced on May 20, 2024, in Catbalogan City in Samar Province. It opens with a plenary lecture on Festivals in the Philippines from Eric Babar Zerrudo, PhD, the newly appointed Executive Director of the National Commission for Culture and the Arts and the former UST Graduate School -Center for Conservation of Cultural Property and Environment in the Tropics (USTGS-CCCPET). 

Joining him during the first day of the workshop are other notable speakers, each with unique qualifications and expertise. Prof. Melanie D. Turingan, PhD, Dean of the UST Faculty of Arts and Letters, shared a lecture on local history and its importance in festival management. Asst. Prof. John Christopher Mesana, Director of Colegio de San Juan de Letran-Research and Publication Department, shared his research on Festival Loyalty and Festival Happiness. Two lectures with a workshop followed this; Prof. Joan Christi Bagaipo, a faculty member of UST Institute of Religion and a technical expert on Scriptwriting for live events under the Technical Education and Education and Skills Development Authority (TESDA), facilitated the Scriptwriting workshop. Mr. Elvert Banares, an award-winning film director, festival manager, cultural worker, and co-artistic director of the Iloilo Dinagyang Festival, facilitated the festival planning workshop featuring the case of the Dinagyang Festival. 

Mr. Marvin Piczon, Samar Provincial Tourism Officer, welcomes and acknowledges the guests, speakers, and participants. 

The second day of the workshop delves into theoretical presentations and case studies on scenography, a crucial aspect of festival management, given by John Carlo Pagunaling, an Instructor of Theater Arts from University of the Philippines-Diliman. This is followed by a module on Music and Sound and its role in the festival, a topic of great relevance to our cultural celebrations and how it contributes to the atmosphere and overall experience of the attendees shared by Mr. Jethro Joaquin, a faculty member from Miriam College. Lastly, Mr. Ian Torqueza, the Theater Operations Supervisor from PETA PHINMA Theater, shared his technical expertise on lighting and its importance in creating an ambiance, setting the mood, and enhancing the overall experience of a festival. 

The last three days of the festival management workshop focus on choreography to develop a signature move and dance that will thread the different festivals of Samar towns and cities anchored from Samar’s culture and heritage. Tandaya Festival is a provincial festival of Samar held every August; tandaya is an old name of Samar from the olden times. 

Mr. Rhosam Prudenciado Jr., a multi-awarded and international dancer, facilitates the workshop on contemporary dance joined by Assoc. Prof. John Christopher Mesana, a folk dancer, researcher, and educator. The module was conceptualized and facilitated by Ms. Beverly M. Bautista, the Officer-in-Charge of USTGS-CCCPET.

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