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Sunday, February 10, 2013

This Week in Philippine History and Culture

Feb. 11, 1986: Evelio Bellaflor Javier (b. October 14, 1942), an opposition leader during the term of President Ferdinand E. Marcos, is assassinated in the town of San Jose in Antique province. Javier was elected provincial governor in 1971. He lost the Batasang Pambansa elections in 1984. At the time of his death, Javier was director of Corazon Aquino's campaign in Antique.

Feb. 11, 1987: The 1987 Constitution of the Philippines goes into effect.

Feb. 11, 1989: Movie and television actress Lourdes Virginia Moran Poe, better known as Lovi Poe, is born in Quezon City. A contract star of GMA Network, Poe is currently part of the weekly noontime variety show Party Pilipinas. Poe is also a recording artist, having released albums including The Best of My Heart and Bloom.

Feb. 13, 1907: Katy de la Cruz (d. November 10, 2004), a singer known for jazz vocals and torch songs, is born in Bustos, Bulacan. The career of de la Cruz spanned almost eighty years since the 1920s. De la Cruz also ventured into the movies, and she even won the FAMAS Best Supporting Actress Award for the 1953 film Inspirasyon.

Feb. 14, 1924: Juan Ponce Enrile, the President of the Senate of the Philippines since 2008, is born in the town of Gonzaga, Cagayan province. Enrile's career in the government has spanned more than four decades.

Feb. 14, 1971: Actress and television host Kris Aquino, the youngest daughter of former Philippine senator Benigno S. Aquino, Jr. and Corazon Cojuangco-Aquino, is born. She is currently seen in the ABS-CBN talk show Kris TV, the drama series Kailangan Ko'y Ikaw, and starting February 16, the talent search program Pilipinas Got Talent.

Feb. 14, 1977: Recording artist-turned-actress Donna Cruz is born in Manila. Cruz popularized the single "Kapag Tumibok ang Puso," which is a track in her 1991 debut album, Donna.

Feb. 14, 1984: Television personality John Prats is born in Manila. He is part of the ABS-CBN weekly noontime variety show ASAP 18. Before becoming known for his dance albums, Prats was paired with Heart Evangelista in various ABS-CBN television programs and movies.

Feb. 14, 1985: Television personality Love Marie Payawal Ongpauco, better known as Heart Evangelista, is born in Makati. Prior to transferring to GMA Network in 2008, Evangelista was paired with John Prats in various ABS-CBN television programs and movies.

Feb. 14, 1992: Television host/journalist and actress Helen Vela (b. October 31, 1946) dies in Rochester, Minnesota. Aside from being known for hosting the drama anthology/counseling program Lovingly Yours, Helen, Vela also co-hosted the variety program Student Canteen. Vela also anchored various news programs for the defunct Banahaw Broadcasting Corporation (BBC).

Feb. 16, 1945: In the Pacific theatre of the Second World War, American forces land on Corregidor Island in the Philippines. Less than three years before, the island's combined Filipino and American defenders had capitulated to Japanese forces on May 6, 1942.

Four Filipino Comedy Movies

Comedy is one of the most popular genres in the history of Philippine movies. Following are some newspaper advertisements of Once Upon a Time in Manila, Tasya Fantasya, Swapings, and Pempe ni Sara at Pen.

Tony Reyes' Once Upon a Time in Manila opened in theaters on January 11, 1994. Based on the title, the movie might have been a spoof of the Once Upon a Time in China series of martial arts films. Filipino Vic Sotto and Japanese-born actress Cynthia Luster lead the cast of Once Upon a Time in Manila. It can be noted that Sotto would partner with child martial artist Jacky Shik in Enteng and the Shaolin Kid 

Once Upon a Time in Manila, Vic Sotto, Cynthia Luster, Tony Y. Reyes

On the same date, Golden Lions Films released Carlo J. Caparas' Tasya Fantasya. The movie is not just a combination of comedy and fantasy; it also features many Philippine Basketball Association (PBA) players. Kris Aquino and 1993 PBA Most Valuable Player Alvin Patrimonio lead the cast of this fantasy comedy movie.

Sunday, February 3, 2013

This Week in Philippine History and Culture

Feb. 2, 1987: The Philippines enacts a new constitution, replacing the one enacted in 1973.

Feb. 3, 1927: Politician and diplomat Blas F. Ople (d. December 14, 2003) is born in the town of Hagonoy in Bulacan province.  February 3 is a non-working holiday in the province in commemoration of his birth.

Feb. 3, 1945:  A month-long battle aimed at retaking Manila from Japan was started by the United States and the Philippine Commonwealth. Japanese forces had invaded Manila in January 1942.

Feb. 4, 1899: Shots fired by Private William Walter Grayson on this date in 1899 sparks the Battle of Manila, the first armed conflict fought during the Philippine-American War.

Feb. 5, 1989: Movie and television actress Ara Marie Cristine Reyes, better known as Cristine Reyes is born in Marikina, Metro Manila. A contract artist of ABS-CBN, Reyes is also managed by Viva Artists Agency.

Feb. 6, 1931: Ricardo Cardinal Vidal, Archbishop-Emeritus of Cebu, is born in the town of Mogpog in Marinduque province.

Feb. 6, 1964: Emilio Aguinaldo (b. March 22, 1869), first Philippine President Filipino general, dies at the age of 94. As of 2013, Aguinaldo was the youngest Philippine President, assuming the post in 1899 at the age of 29. He was also the longest-living former President of the Philippines. 

Feb. 6, 1966: Film producer Narcisa Buencamino vda. de Leon (b. October 29, 1877), co-founder of LVN Pictures, dies at the age of 88 in Quezon City.

Feb. 7, 1974: Broadcast journalist Cheryl Cosim, Filipina journalist is born. She currently hosts the radio program Diretsahan on Radyo 5 and the television program Good Morning Club on TV5.

Feb. 8, 1890: Poet and politician Claro M. Recto (d. October 2, 1960) is born in the town of Tiaong in Tayabas (now Quezon) province. Azcarraga, a main road in Manila, was renamed C.M. Recto Avenue in his honor.

Feb. 8, 1939: Writer and activist Jose Maria Sison is born in Cabugao, Ilocos Sur. Using Amado Guerrero, as the nom de guerre, Sison led the Maoist-leaning reformation of the Partido Komunista ng Pilipinas into the Communist Party of the Philippines in 1968.

Feb. 8, 1960: Benigno S. Aquino III, the 15th President of the Philippines, is born in Manila. He is currently serving a six-year term of office since being elected in 2010.

Friday, February 1, 2013

Record-Breaking Rizal High School

An article that was published in the February 27, 1994 issue of the Philippine Daily Inquirer reported about Rizal High School in Pasig City being recognized by the Guinness Book of World Records as the "secondary school with the biggest student population in the world." According to the school's Web site,  the distinction has been in place since 1993.

Following is a scanned image of the article, which also reports on how the school got included in the Guinness Book:

Happy First Anniversary, Pinoy Pop Culture!!!

The Pinoy Pop Culture blog has just entered another chapter as it celebrates its first year. The people behind this blog would like to take the opportunity to thank everyone for the support. Let us look forward to more posts about Filipino culture.