12 December 2012—The Philippine Embassy in Kuala Lumpur reported that the Philippine Embassy Chorale staged their first public performance as the opening act at the concert of singer-songwriter Jose Mari Chan entitled "Christmas in our Hearts" last December 9 at the KL Live auditorium
Led by choirmaster and Embassy First Secretary and Consul Maria Antonina Mendoza-Oblena, the Chorale performed the Philippine and Malaysian national anthems and enthralled the audience with their performance of Christmas carols "Joy to the World", "Pasko na Sinta Ko" and "Kumukutikutitap". Ambassador J. Eduardo Malaya accompanied the choir on the piano in singing "Pasko na Sinta Ko".
Organized last month, the Chorale is composed of Embassy staff and members of the Filipino community, who came together for their love of music and their wish to provide joy and glory to the Filipino community through music.
"The chorale members have set aside time after work hours, braving traffic and the monsoon rains to go to the Embassy to practice. They are a source of pride to the Filipino community in Malaysia. They have raised our cultural diplomacy to another notch," Ambassador Malaya said.
After the Chorale's performance, popular Filipino singer-songwriter Jose Mari Chan entertained the some 1,100 people in the audience in a repertoire of his old and new songs. Audiences sang along with his classics, "Tell Me Your Name," "Deep in My Heart", "Beautiful Girl," and "Can We Just Stop and Talk Awhile".
Mr. Chan also had duets with three members of the Filipino community in songs such as "My Girl, My Woman, My Friend," with Gina Panizales, "Please Be Careful with My Heart" with Jenny Santos and "Christmas in Our Hearts" with Embassy receptionist Jennifer Alferez.
He also kept the audience entertained with his jokes and other musings about his life in and out of the limelight.
The Chorale will again regale the diplomatic corps, members of the Filipino community and other guests as they perform during the Parol (Christmas Lantern) Lighting Ceremonies at the Embassy on December 17.
Members of the choir are Jerico Redito, Ryan Estandarte, Rommel Cuisia, Juhun Dantis, Padilla Reyes Jr. and Noel Fernando on bass; Anabel Espinosa, Rosemarie Hermano, Louie Brigida Quero-Lee, Elcar Villaflores, Mari Anjeli Lubrico, Lisette Nonato, Liezl Liberes, Leni Sangalang, Maria Jayona and Nica Estores on alto; Jodelyn Tulod, Jennifer Alferez, Gloria Taule, Precious Ann Oria, Mildred Mariano, Jeane Mendoza, Melinda Cunanan, Zaide Castro-Fuerzas, Chiara Dulla, Edelyn Lonizo, Helen Grace Cuisia, and Virgie Alvaro on soprano; and Glenn Moico Aytona, Gerry Jayar, Chlester Lising and Medrano Double on tenor.
The December 9 concert's organizing committee was composed of Embassy Administrative Officer Faith Planas-Bautista, Tess Dizon, Cherina Chacko, Richard Lee and Bart Vista.
The concert was made possible through generous assistance from DiGi Communications and Forex Cargo as co-presenters, Ireka Development Management Sdn Bhd and John Chacko (M) International Sdn Bhd. as major sponsors, Tan Chong Group, MASwings and Maybank as sponsors and Lim Foo Yong Holdings Sdn Bhd as benefactor. END