PH Embassy in Oslo Celebrates Independence Day 2019 with Filipino Musician

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 Dr. Raul Sunico at the piano and Mr. Arthur Erskine Basilio with the classic guitar. (Oslo PE photo)

OSLO 18 June 2019 — In a suitable finale to its series of celebrations for the 121st Anniversary of the Proclamation of Philippine Independence Day, the Philippine Embassy in Oslo showcased the world-renowned Filipino pianist Dr. Raul Sunico, with the collaboration of musician Arthur Erskine M. Basilio at the guitar, kudyapi and faglong.

The concert was held on 29 May 2019, at the Oslo Concert Hall, a leading venue for culture and music in the heart of Oslo.  The Embassy was joined by 240 members of the diplomatic corps, Norwegian government officials, leaders of Filipino Community organizations, and guests not only from Norway, but also from various countries.

True to this year’s theme of Kalayan 2019, “Tapang ng Bayan, Malasakit sa Mamamayan”, Dr. Sunico and Mr. Basilio performed classic pieces by Philippine composers, and traditional Filipino music and folk songs. The audience was especially enthralled by Dr. Sunico’s expertise without use of musical scores.

They were moved by the kudyapi performance of Binalig and Sinulog by Mr. Basilio, as it was a rare experience with the kudyapi and the faglong are usually performed only by the ethnolinguistic groups in Southern Philippines for Datus or tribal leaders.  Mr. Basilio is a trailblazer in this sense for learning to play the instrument and sharing it here in Oslo.

The concert was organized with the full support  of the National Commission for Culture and the Arts (NCCA) led by Chairman Virgilio S. Almario, and the cooperation of the Department of Foreign Affairs’ Office of Strategic Communications and Research-Cultural Diplomacy Division.END

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(from left) Ambassador Jocelyn Batoon-Garcia, Mr. Basilio, Ministry of Finance State Secretary Brage Baklien  Dr. Sunico, Ministry of Foreign Affairs Director General Johan Vibe, Deputy Chief of Mission Maria Elena Algabre (Oslo PE photo)

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 Embassy officers and staff with Dr. Sunico and Mr. Basilio (Oslo PE photo)

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