In celebration of the National Arts Month of the Philippines held each February, the Ilokano and Philippine Drama and Film Program of the University of Hawai`i at Manoa joins hands with the Philippine Consulate General in Honolulu in holding the Fiesta Ilokana and Amianan 2007.

The Fiesta, to be held at the Philippine Consulate General on Pali Highway, Honolulu on February 24, from 9:00 AM to 4:00 PM, hopes to celebrate and showcase the artistic and cultural practices and achievements of Filipinos in the Philippines and in Hawai`i particularly those Filipinos sharing a common heritage in Northwestern Luzon such as the Ilokanos, the peoples of the Cordilleras, and the peoples of the Cagayan Valley.

The Fiesta will have two parts: a creative writing workshop in the morning, 9:00 AM-12 PM.

Dubbed “Kur-itan Kontra Kanser ken Kinaranggas iti Taeng—Writing Up to Write Off Cancer and Domestic Violence: Creative Writing in Ilokano and in English Translation”, the workshop will be directed and facilitated by Dr. Aurelio Agcaoili, a multi-awarded Ilokano writer writing in Ilokano, Tagalog/Filipino, and English.

The writing workshop—also known as KKKK Creative Writing Project—has been designed for all members of the community who would like to hone their writing skills and become aware of the issues surrounding community health such as cancer and domestic violence. The writing exercises will zero in on these issues as take-off points for poetic and stylized writing.

The cultural showcase, dramatic performance, and cultural exhibit will be held in the afternoon.

Material cultural artifacts from the Ilokos, the Cordilleras, and the Cagayan Valley will be on display for participants to gain insight into the complex cultures of Amianan or Northwestern Luzon.

Poets, writers, dramatists, and other performance artists will showcase their work. Dances highlighting the indigenous and the immigrant cultures of the Ilokanos and the peoples of Amianan will form part of the cultural program.

Also part of the program is a demonstration of the healing arts and other health care practices of the Ilokanos and the peoples of Amianan by Virgil Apostol, a renowned mangngablon from Los Angeles, California and who traces his healing heritage and gifts from the Ilocos.

Other organizations such as the GUMIL Hawai`i, the Philippine Studies Program of the University of Hawai`i-Leeward Community College, and Annak ti Kailokuan ti America have signed in to take part and co-sponsor this arts and creative writing festival. Overall coordination work for the whole day Fiesta is by the Timpuyog: Ilokano Student Association of the University of Hawai`i at Manoa.

Individuals who have signed up to take part in the Fiesta are former representative Jun Abinsay; Prof. Precy Espiritu, Lydia Abajo, and Amalia Bueno of the Pukengkeng Liberation Group; Amado Yoro, one of Hawai`i’s foremost Ilokano poets; Abe-Nile-Nagel Flores dancers; the Ilokano Program faculty; and the Timpuyog Choir. Clem Montero and Julius Soria, both faculty members of the UH Manoa Ilokano Program, will emcee the cultural program.

Cultural workers, artists, and members of the various cultural and civic organizations who are interested to take part in this gathering as performers or as sponsors are asked to contact Dr. Aurelio Agcaoili, Ilokano Program, University of Hawai`i, 956-8405; Consul Arlene Macaisa or Ms. Mod Villalobos, Philippine Consulate, 595-6316 extension 230 and 242, respectively.

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