Verni Varga and Cesar Montano lead musical extravaganza celebrating Visayan talent

Verni Varga (in photo) plays themythical Rosas Pandan in Si Lapulapu, Si Rosas Pandan: a Bisaya MusicalExtravaganza. She will be joined by Cesar Montano, Joey Ayala and BayangBarrios, Elizabeth Ramsey and Jaya during this concert to be held thisSaturday, November 22, at the Cultural Center of the Philippines.

After keeping herself busy with corporate shows, The Vamp VerniVarga will grace the upcoming concert titled Si Lapulapu, Si Rosas Pandan: aBisaya Musical Extravaganza. She portrays Rosas Pandan, themythic Bisaya maiden who symbolizes beauty and virtue. The Singing Beehost Cesar Montano (who hails from Bohol) will play the legendary Lapulapu,the heroic leader of Mactan.

Aside from Verni and Cesar, other Visayan talents willperform on stage this Saturday, November 22, at the CCP Tanghalang NicanorAbelardo (Main Theater). The event is organized by Kadugong Bisaya, thenational organization promoting Visayan languages, culture and the arts.

Ms. Verni told PEP (Philippine Entertainment Portal) that she looks forward totaking part in this Visayan musical.

"Ako kasi proud Cebuana, proud Bisaya ako.Tingin ko ang dominanteng lahi, mga Bisaya. Siyempre, happy ako na tinawagannila ako to perform in this extravaganza. All of sudden, parang isang dugo yungnararamdaman ko, e. Pag sinabing magsasama-sama mga Bisaya, pati yung mgataga-behind the scenes, mga Bisaya, e. Iba ang pakiramdam ko na isang Bisayaako."

She adds, "Ang mga Cebuana, masyadong masarapmapagmahal, malambing, maasikaso."

Initially, Ms. Pilita Corrales was supposed to be part of thisevent but in the final lineup, she was no longer included in the concert.

"Happy ako nung narinig ko na kasama nga si Pilita dahil siyempre siya angpinakakilala na Cebuano sa industriya, di ba? Hindi ko lang alam kung anungnangyari kaya hindi na siya kasama," admits the native of Bantayan island inCebu.

According to organizers, there was miscommunication aboutthe date of the event, which is why Ms. Pilita would not be able to perform inthe Visayan musical extravaganza.

Ms. Verni was saddened to learn that Ms. Pilita is notincluded in the concert. She feels incomplete because Pilita, for her, is oneof the pillars of Visayans in the music industry. "Parang kulang, kulang sapundasyon, di ba? Kung ang industriya lang ang pinag-uusapan na puro mga Bisaya,si Pilita ang unang papasok sa isip mo."


Fresh from his internationalperformances in Miss Saigon, Leo Valdez will also take part in this specialevent. Other performers are Joey Ayala and Bayang Barrios, Elizabeth Ramsey and daughterJaya, Rachelle Gerodias, Jose Mari Chan, the Philippine Dance SportsAssociation, Noni Buencamino, Raki Vega, Deeda Barretto, Jerry Dadap's AndresBonifacio Choir, Ballet Philippines, Modern Ballet Dancers, and the RamonObusan Folkloric Group. The Philippine Madrigal Singers will also render YoyoyVillame "classics" as a tribute to the singer-composer dubbed as the "King ofPhilippine Novelty Songs."

Various Visayan songs and medleys, displaying all kinds of classic, vintage,and popular Sugbuanon music, including Hiligaynon and Waray, will be featuredin this unique concert.

The cultural event is being presented by Kadugong Bisaya incooperation with the Cultural Center of the Philippines and the Department ofTourism. The director of the program is Chris Millado, who proudly declaresthat he is an Ilonggo.






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