All-Filipino Jazz Artists to Perform at CCP Virtual Music Festival

Vocal trio Baihana (left) and saxophonist Michael Guevarra are among the featured artists on ‘Jazz Stay at Home’. Handout

MANILA — The Cultural Center of the Philippines (CCP), through its Office of the President, is set to host a virtual jazz festival featuring a roster of all-Filipino artists.

Titled “Jazz Stay at Home,” the festival will be streamed live on the PCC and Center President’s Office Facebook pages in late September and early October.

The event is free to the public and is part of the CCP Chairman’s Office’s outreach program called “Sining Sigla,” which was recently launched at an online press conference.

“Jazz Stay at Home” will open on September 25 with a message from PCC President Arsenio Lizaso and a brief tour of the evolution of jazz.

This will be followed by a presentation of all-time favorite jazz songs by award-winning singer and songwriter Nicole Laurel Asensio, who is often dubbed a “schizoprano” for her versatile vocal abilities.

On September 26, multi-award-winning saxophonist and music arranger Michael Guevarra will perform a demo concert titled “Saxophone Music Production at Home.” His talk will include topics such as Live Recording and Midi Sequencing for Minus 1, and will be made more entertaining by interpolated musical numbers.

After that will be “Pinoy Jazz,” a showcase of all-original jazz compositions with a touch of Filipino music featuring the all-female vocal trio Baihana.

On September 27, multi-award-winning saxophonist Tots Tolentino will perform in the “Free Jazz” improvisation session, closing the first part of the festival.

The second round of “Jazz Stay at Home” will begin on October 2 with a talk titled “The Wonderful World of Bossa Nova” by multi-award winning musical director, composer and arranger Peter Paul “Pipo” Cifra. Here, Cifra is expected to discuss the fundamentals of jazz and its use in composing bossa nova, which is a blend of soft samba and American jazz.

His sister, the Japanese bossa nova artist Lorna Cifra, will hold a session entitled “Improvisation and All that Jazz”.

Simon Tan Trio, comprised of accomplished jazz artists Simon Tan, Joey de Guzman and Rey Vinoya, will perform “Modern Jazz” on October 3.

The festival will conclude on October 4 with an evening showcase of Baihana, Simon Tan Trio, Asensio and Tolentino.

Besides “Jazz Stay at Home”, the program of activities of “Sining Sigla” also includes film screenings, a special retrospective on the life and work of Jose Corazon De Jesus, among others, until November.

The CCP Chairman’s Office program serves as the backbone of the digital platform as the novel coronavirus pandemic continues.

Ada J. Kenney