On May 4 and 6, 2023, the Kababayan Learning Community at Skyline College presented its 18th annual Pilipino Cultural Night, The Heart of Pleasant Hill, in the Gallery. The play was written by the ENGL 103 class in Fall 2022, then produced by the ENGL 104 class in Spring 2023, under the guidance of Dr. Liza Erpelo, who teaches both courses. The 18-person cast and crew was led by executive producer Trinity Velasco-Frias and executive director Ryan Roi Domingo, who is also this year’s Fulbright Foreign Language Teaching Assistant.

The link to the show’s program can be found here: https://bit.ly/PCN18ProgramKLC

This year’s story not only highlighted the little-known history of Filipinos in Louisiana, but also incorporated Filipino mythological creatures into the storyline. Students performed in an elaborate hip hop number choreographed and taught by Joel Jayce Capistrano, U-Jam Fitness and Zumba instructor. The students also presented dances and music of the T’boli people of the southern Philippines as taught by Bonifacio Valera and assisted by Jae Tioseco, a Kababayan Learning Community alumnus, from Barangay Dance Company.

All proceeds from the ticket sales went directly to the Friends of Kababayan scholarship fund. More information about the Kababayan Learning Community and ways to donate to the scholarship fund can be found here: https://skylinecollege.edu/kababayan/index.php

At Gala Night on May 6, in addition to acknowledging this year’s 15 graduates/transferring students, the Kababayan Learning Community also honored this year’s recipients of the Friends of Kababayan scholarships:

Caitlin Collantes
Carla Nicole Pangan
Janine Sophia Peralta
Kristopher Ken Reyes
Mikaela Aspiras Yangco

These shows would not be possible without the help of several important people. Many thanks to the Theatre Events Manager, Joshua Harris; Amanda Bortoli, Skyline College Graphic Arts & Graphic Production; and Danni Redding-Lapuz, Dean of the Social Sciences/Creative Arts Division.
Thank you, see you again next year, and mabuhay!

Article by Dr. Liza Erpelo | Photos by Dr. Liza Erpelo and Aubrey Lassen

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