Thursday, July 22, 2010

Manila Times-Dia Del Galeon Festival

I am taking a break from writing about politics this week to focus on a very important event that will take place in a few months—the Día del Galeón or “Day of the Galeon.”

This festival will commemorate the Manila-Acapulco Galleon Trade that took place between 1565 and 1815. One of the most important trade routes in world history,
the Galleon Trade connected Asia with Europe, the Americas, and Africa and was a vessel for the transmission of goods, people, culture and ideas. The different communities on this long and scattered network of ports and coastal towns and cities surely profited from the trade of exotic products and crafts. But more important was the explosion of ideas across continents. Early Filipino patriots were surely influenced by western liberalism through the books, newspapers, periodicals, and people that made the long and arduous passage across the Pacific. In this sense, the Galleon Trade was among the great precursors of modern globalization, much like the Silk and Amber Routes.

However, while the Silk and Amber Routes have been widely written about and celebrated, many have overlooked the importance of the historical linkages between the Philippines, Mexico, and Spain and the impact this important lifeline had on the world we live in today. In an attempt to increase awareness and appreciation of the Galleon Trade, the Philippines will take the lead in commemorating this major trade route in a monumental international festival.

The Día del Galeón is a celebration of shared histories and heritages and the cultural, political, and socio-economic connectivity between peoples across vast seas and oceans, spanning several centuries. It is important to reflect on these poignant themes as we move further into the 21st century. Far from dead, the spirit of the Galleon Trade is alive and kicking, as if the great ships that once carried early mariners to the edge of the known world are about to set sail on the high seas once again.

In accordance with the celebration of the International Year for the Rapprochement of Cultures in 2010, the Philippine proposal for the commemoration of the Galleon Trade between the Philippines and Mexico through the proclamation of “Día del Galeón” was unanimously passed last year, during the conference of Unesco through the endorsement of the Culture Commission meeting in Paris.

The Día del Galeón will be observed every October 8 starting this year, in honor of the day the San Pedro Galleon, directed by master navigator Fray Urdaneta, reached Acapulco in 1565. This established the Manila–Acapulco route that linked the people of Asia, America, Europe and Africa and was later on called the “Tornaviaje.” The resolution was presented by Philippine Ambassador Rora Navarro-Tolentino with the co-sponsorship of Mexico, Spain, Cuba, Colombia, Peru and Paraguay. Thailand and Laos led the Asean region’s support, while Sweden spoke for Europe.

The theme of this year’s festival is “History, Heritage, and Habitat: Commencing Globalization.” Activities will include a slew of conferences, workshops, and commemorative events that pay tribute to the historical and contemporary significance of the Galleon Trade. Participants will come from the Philippines and other countries impacted by the Galleon Trade experience like Mexico, Spain, Asean, and a handful of Latin American countries.

The highlights of the festival include a three-week interactive workshop that will focus on the comparative studies of Hispanic heritage-linked countries and the value of indigenous culture affected by trade; a three-day international conference of scholars, artists, cultural workers, and government leaders on the impact of the Galleon Trade on contemporary civilizations; a series of contests, exhibits and performances; and finally the “Viaje del Galeon”—a six-day educational trip that will take students and other participants to various Philippine ports of call (Samar, Leyte, Cebu, and Butuan), with on-board workshops, seminars, and interactive shows. Also in the works is a regatta being organized by the Manila Yacht Club. For more info, please contact Charisse Aquino-Tugade, Día del Galeón Festival 2010, Tel. 527-2192 loc. 616.


The Dia Del Galeon would not have been made possible without the cooperation of Sen. Edgardo Angara, Festival Director Cecile Guidote-Alvarez, and DepEd Usec Vilma Labrador. Angara, the honorary chairperson of the Baler 400 Steering Committee and Philippine Representative to Union Latina, has vigorously supported the festival from the start, providing funding for the endeavor. Guidote-Alvarez, with her boundless energy, enthusiasm, and never-say-die attitude, is the heart and soul of Día del Galeón.
Completing the dynamic triumvirate is Labrador, the Chairperson of the National Commission for Culture and the Arts. I must commend Labrador for her excellent stewardship of the agency. The NCCA has improved with her at the helm and has greatly benefited from her leadership, guidance, and vision. Together—Angara, Alvarez, and Labrador—are turning the dream of Día del Galeón into reality.

BY BUDDY CUNANAN-July 20, 2010 

Wednesday, July 21, 2010


1st int'l Galleon Day fest to be held this 2010

Posted at 07/20/2010 4:13 PM | Updated as of 07/21/2010 10:00 AM

MANILA, Philippines - The Philippines will add another feather to its cap as it spearheads the commemorative activities of the first International Dia del Galeon Festival this September 15 to October 15, 2010, culminating in a grand celebration in Paris on October 12.
The grand festival recognizes the importance of the Galleon Trade which flourished between 1565 and 1815. The Philippines played a key role in the trade route using galleons which linked Asia to Europe via Mexico.
The United Nations Educational, Scientific and Cultural Organization (UNESCO) passed a resolution in its General Conference in Paris last October 2009 declaring October 8 of every year beginning 2010 as Dia del Galeon. This resolution was co-sponsored by the Philippines, Mexico and Spain with the support of ASEAN and several European countries.
October 8 is said to be the day when the San Pedro Galeon, with navigator Fray Urdaneta, reached Acapulco in 1565. This event established the Manila-Acapulco route linking Asia, the Americas, Europe, and Africa, and later dubbed as the "Tornaviaje."
What the Galleon Trade brought
The Galleon Trade brought a wide variety of Mexican influence to the Philippines. The galleons from Mexico carried in its cargo sampaloc, achuete, and tsokolate de batirol, among others.
The trade route also brought Filipino products to the world. The fragrant ylang-ylang, which is still made into garlands and sold on the streets of Manila today every afternoon, was brought to Europe via Mexico. Ylang-ylang is still used in French perfumes to this day.
From Manila, the Barong Tagalog also arrived in Mexico and Cuba, where it is called "guayabera."
"The Galleon Trade served as the precursor of globalization," said Cecile Guidote-Alvarez, UNESCO Commissioner on Culture and Dia del Galeon Festival Director.
Events lined up
For the 1st Dia del Galeon Festival, the Baler 400 Steering Committee headed by Senator Edgardo J. Angara, along with the UNESCO International Theater Institute, and the National Commission for Culture and the Arts (NCCA) teamed up with embassies and national and international agencies to make the event possible.
The Festival, with the theme "History, Heritage and Habitat," will be officially launched in Bohol on Thursday, July 22, also the province's 156th Foundation Day. It also coincides with the Bohol Sandugo Festival.
A three-week festival featuring workshops on arts, heritage and cultural exchange, demonstrations, exhibits and performances will be held from September 15 to October 8. Participants will be from the Philippines and all the continents with the Galleon Trade experience.
An international conference will be held from October 8 to 10 which will gather scholars, artists, cultural workers, and governance leaders. The historical, political, economic, and cultural impact of the Galleon Trade history on contemporary civilizations will be discussed in an effort to find ways to enrich the present global agenda on sustainable development.
The Viaje del Galeon is scheduled from October 9 to 14, a one-week educational trip to various Philippine ports of call tracing the Galleon Trade route in the country. There will be on-board workshops, seminars, interactive performances and celebrations at the ports of call.
Other events include the launching of a commemorative stamp designed by renowned artist Juvenal Sanso; launching of an international yacht competition across the Pacific; national student music, literature, and visual arts competitions; and, bilingual declamation contests.
"The Dia del Galeon on October 8 will cap this eventful 2010 for the Philippines. Celebrations in the 3M's--Manila, Madrid, and Mexico--will be held simultaneously," said Angara.
"Spain is very thankful for this initiative to strengthen not just our ties but also that with the Asia-Pacific rim," said Jose Hornero, First Secretary of the Spanish Embassy.
"The Mexican government is glad to support a Philippine initiative to declare the Dia del Galeon. We are enthusiastic to support the Philippines in this event," said Miguel Angel George of the Mexican Embassy. -- Karen Galarpe,


July 16 Manila, Philippines- Festivals are rich in the Philippines all year round in various regions, provinces, cities, and barangays. Starting this 2010, the Philippines joins the rest of the world in commemorating Día del Galeón (Day of the Galleon) on October 8 of every year, following the UNESCO Resolution passed last year in Paris, France, which honors the Galleon Trade between the Philippines and Spain via Mexico that took place for 250 years from 1565 to 1815.  
On July 16, 2010, the National Commission for Culture and the Arts (NCCA), which is the lead agency for organizing the festival, held a press conference at Barbara’s Restaurant, Intramuros, to formally announce and launch Día del Galeón Festival 2010, which is anchored on the theme “Continental Connectivity, Precursor to Globalization.”
The Galleon Trade is one of the most important trade routes in world history because it bridged Asia, starting from Manila across the Pacific Ocean, with Europe, the Americas, and Africa in the 15th Century continuing to the 17th Century. Considering our major role in this history, the Philippines has taken up the task of organizing a monumental festival in tribute to the shared history and culture brought about by the Galleon Trade.
The Día del Galeón honorary chairpersons Senator Edgardo J. Angara and DepEd Undersecretary and NCCA Chairman Vilma L. Labrador joined Cecile Guidote Alvarez, Día del Galeón Director General, in leading the panel of speakers. Joining them were Miguel Angel George Cruz, Third Secretary and Consul of Mexico to the Philippines; Jose Hornero, First Secretary of the Spanish Embassy to the Philippines; and Jose Ma. Fons Guardiola, Deputy for Cultural Affairs of Instituto Cervantes. They presented the media with the Festival’s objectives, programs, and significance to History, Heritage, Habitat, and Language.
“With the Galleon trade, the world became a global village and Manila became the most important port in Asia. It gave us a place in world history,” Sen. Angara related to the press.
Señor Hornero, in behalf of Ambassador Luis Arias Romero, said, “It is the first institutionalized venture and commemoration of (the) Galleon Trade. We are pioneers in this ground. I am very excited. We are in the process of creation.” 
                Meanwhile, Señor Fons said, “There’s something common in our history. It’s good if we can use that history and heritage to establish a dialogue for the future.” He added that the festival will be an interesting catalyzer for cultural dialogue and understanding.                
Consul George shared that “Día del Galeón will be observed in a grand way in Mexico, particularly because of its centennial celebration.”
                The panel also relayed to the media that the Día del Galeón Steering Committee has planned a multiplicity of activities simultaneously happening in Manila, Mexico, and Madrid as the three capital cities of the Galleon Trade. In Manila, there will be a three-week workshop for international and local participants, leading to October 8, which shall see the triangulated cooperative performance of the three capital cities for the staging of Miguel Sabido’s Juana la Loca.



A festival to compete in the world stage, the first International Día del Galeón Festival

July 6, 2010, Manila, Philippines – The verdict is final, the Philippines is spearheading the commemorative activities under the first International Día del Galeón Festival, which will be held from September 15 to October 15, 2010. Culminating with a grand celebration in Paris on October 12, this festival will further push the Philippines into the international festival scene.

At last year’s UNESCO General Conference in Paris, October 8 of every year was proclaimed as Día del Galeón (Day of the Galleon) in commemoration of the Galleon Trade, which took place between 1565 and 1815. The Philippines played a significant role in one of the most important trade routes in history and has thus taken to the task of organizing a monumental festival in tribute to the Galleon Trade. Also called the Manila–Acapulco Galleon, this trade route bridged Asia with Europe, the Americas, and Africa. It has brought a wide variety of Mexican influence to the Philippines, introducing Philippine culinary favorites such as the sampaloc, achuete, and, of course, tsokolate de batirol. In Mexico, chocolate was mixed with cinnamon and chiles; meanwhile in the Philippines, pure sugar and sometimes groundnuts and milk were added, bringing the Aztec drink to new heights. Not only did the Galleon Trade open the Philippines to new cultures and ideas, the world was introduced to Philippines. The Ylang-ylang, a fragrant flower sold in garlands till today in Manila, was brought to Europe via Mexico and is now the key ingredient in expensive French perfumes. The Barong Tagalog found its way to Mexico and Cuba and is now called Guayabera in those countries.

The Baler 400 Steering Committee headed by Senator Edgardo J. Angara, UNESCO International Theater Institute, and the National Commission for Culture and the Arts (NCCA) have teamed up with national and international agencies such as Instituto Cervantes; Union Latina; embassies of the countries impacted by Galleon Trade, especially Spanish Embassy and Mexican Embassy; the Department of Tourism; Department of Education; Department of Transportation and Communication; National Museum; Cultural Center of the Philippines; National Historical Commission of the Philippines; National Archives; The National Library; Komisyon sa Wikang Filipino; Intramuros Administration, San Agustin Museum; and Philippine Navy in the careful planning of the event. International and renowned historians and artists are expected to speak and hold workshops for the festival. The Philippines will once again claim its glory in history’s Galleon Trade.

Contact: Charisse Aquino-Tugade
+(632) 527-2192 loc. 616
+(63917) 861-3011

Monday, July 19, 2010

Check out our new Dia Del Galeon Logo! The Festival is going to be amazing!!!