THE OFFICE for Quadricentennial Activities and Highlights, along with other student organizations, paid tribute to Thomasian artists last September 18 at the St. Martin de Porres Auditorium in an event called “UST Artists for UST.”

Touted as one of the events to drumbeat the Quadricentennial celebration, it was expected that the show would be grand and elaborate. But the show could have done with less kinks.

There were several miscues and glitches. For instance, the band Paraluman announced that they would perform three songs, but when they were to perform their third song, Jamie Rivera went on stage to sing.

Technical problems such as faulty microphones and sound system consistently bugged the performance. Thankfully, singer RJ Jimenez knew how to please the crowd when his song number got suspended because the wire for his guitar did not work.

During a song number, Thomasian visual artists were flashed in an audio-visual presentation (AVP). But the AVP was poorly researched and it left out key UST visual artists such as National Artists J. Elizalde Navarro, Arturo Luz and Ang Kiukok.

Meanwhile, actor Dominic Ochoa and beauty queen Miriam Quiambao were obviously poorly prepared. Quiambao showed up wearing her laurel wreath as a head band and confessed she didn’t know what it was for. Meanwhile, Ochoa had a hard time telling the audience his memories when he was still studying in the University.

Despite the roster of popular celebrities attending the event, the event was not well-promoted and publicized among the Thomasian community, as proven by many empty seats in the auditorium.

Exploring the Myth of the Human Body

Some students said they attended the event because they were told to do so, and to fulfill a class requirement.

And considering the show-biz flair of the event, other arts were relegated, very evident in the token AVP on the visual arts. Outside of show-biz, do Thomasians care for the arts such as poetry, classical music and theater?

While students yelled and cheered celebrities reading poetry or rendering classical music, they paid no attention really to the performances.

The tribute fell short of really paying tribute to Thomasian artists due to the technical kinks, performer’s slips and uneven quality of performances. Some segments were awful that they overshadowed the other excellent performances.

The effort of gathering Thomasian artists from the University’s birth to the present is a commendable idea. But more should have been put into the planning and preparation to prevent the tribute from being slapdash.


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