A head shot of Paul Concepcion in promotion the Filipino American Symphony Orchestra's Holiday Pops Concert at the Arcadia Performing Arts Center on December 8.

Artist Spotlight: Paul Concepion

A head shot of Paul Concepcion in promotion the Filipino American Symphony Orchestra's Holiday Pops Concert at the Arcadia Performing Arts Center on December 8.

Our Holiday Pops Concert is upon us (It’s tomorrow!) And we have one last artist under the spotlight—a pianist beloved throughout the Southern California Filipino-American music community for his talent and signature wit—FASO’s very own Paul Conception, Read up on Paul in our latest spotlight and watch him rock a piano solo in our performance of George Gershwin’s Rhapsody in Blue tomorrow night at 6 p.m. at the Arcadia Performing Arts Center!

1. Paul earned his Bachelor of Music in Piano Performance at University of the Philippines (UP). He ended up teaching at UP right after his graduation! He later took up graduate studies in Piano Performance at the Musashino Ongaku Daigaku in Tokyo.

2. His musical travels didn’t stop in grad school! Paul performed throughout Europe and North America as the pianist of acclaimed UP Concert Chorus and as a member of the folkloric UP Kasarinlan Ensemble.

3. Paul’s also a choir director! He currently directs the St. Lorenzo Ruiz Church Choir in Walnut, Calif. (one of our community choirs featured in our upcoming Holiday Pops Concert!) He’s directed the choirs of First United Methodist Church in Downtown Los Angeles, Seventh-Day Adventist Church in Temple City, CAlif. and St. Mark’s Presbyterian Church in Lomita, Calif.

4. Paul is heavily involved in Southern California’s music scene as an active collaborator and teacher. He’s a member of the American College of
Musicians/National Guild of Piano Teachers and the Whittier Branch of Music Teachers’ Association of California (MTAC). Paul has distinction of being MTAC’s past president!

5. A really fun fact: Paul performed for Mrs. Rosalyn and President Jimmy Carter for Mrs. Carter’s eighty-eighth birthday in Plains, Ga.!

Paul Concepcion Jamming at a David Pomeraz and Stephen Bishop Concert

Watch Paul Concepcion rock his piano solo (and our other repertoire!) tomorrow at 6:00 p.m. at the Arcadia Performing Arts Center! Celebrate the holidays with us and support tons of talented FilAm artists at our Holiday Pops Concert. Online ticketing closes today, but you can always order tickets over the phone at 213.248.9850! Or purchase your tickets tomorrow at Arcadia Performing Arts Center’s physical box office right starting at 5 p.m. right before the concert! The Arcadia Performing Arts Center is located at 188 Campus Drive, Arcadia, CA 91007. See you all there!

 

GOD Faith Choir Picture with Robert Shroder at the St. Philomena Church Fiesta Concert

Artist Spotlight: GOD Faith Choir

GOD Faith Choir Picture with Filipino American Symphony Orchestra music director Robert Shroder at the St. Philomena Church Fiesta Concert. Photo in promotion of the Filipino American Symphony Orchestra's Holiday Pops Concert on December 9 at the Arcadia Performing Arts Concert.
The GOD Faith Choir with Filipino American Symphony Orchestra music director Robert Shroder at the St. Philomena Church Fiesta Concert

Today, the GOD Faith Choir, an ensemble based in the St. Philomena Catholic Church in Carson, Calif., is under the spotlight! You can watch this ensemble perform as part of a coalition of community choirs at our Holiday Pops Concert on December 9 at the Arcadia Performing Arts Center!

The GOD Faith Choir behind the scenes at rehearsal in promotion of the Filipino American Symphony Orchestra's Holiday Pops Concert on December 9 at the Arcadia Performing Arts Center.
The GOD Faith Choir at rehearsal.

1. The GOD Faith Choir, formerly known as the St. Philomena REP Choir, got started in 2003! Catechists in the St. Philomena Religious Education Program brought students enrolled in St. Philomena catechism classes together to sing for church events in 2003. Since then, the ensemble has touched the lives of 3 generations of choristers!

2. The GOD Faith Choir is a community of kids from all over Carson! They practice every Saturday afternoon as part of the St. Philomena music ministry. And this ensemble can’t do all that it does without its team of volunteer pianists, guitarists, advisers and coordinators, many of which are parents of choristers and St. Philomena catechists!

A photo of the GOD Faith Choir volunteer guitarists in promotion of the Filipino American Symphony Orchestra's Holiday Pops Concert on December 9 at the Arcadia Performing Arts Center.
The GOD Faith Choir’s volunteer guitarists.
A photo of GOD Faith Choir alums and volunteer assistants in promotion of the Filipino American Symphony Orchestra's Holiday Pops Concert on December 9 at the Arcadia Performing Arts Center..From left to right: Megan Dia, Kristelle Arzaga and Camille De Vera.
GOD Faith Choir alumnae and volunteer assistants From left to right: Megan Dia, Kristelle Arzaga and Camille De Vera.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

3. This ensemble also acts! In 2014, the ensemble performed their first Lenten play, a two-day presentation titled “The Station of the Cross, Via Dolorosa Pantomime,” which featured the choir’s first generation. The cast was 50 members strong! The second generation of the GOD Faith Choir put on another Lenten play titled “Station of the Cross, Via Dolorosa – Re-enactment” in 2016. Both plays were presented to the St. Philomena parish community!

A photo from GOD Faith Choir's 2014 play “The Station of the Cross, Via Dolorosa Pantomime" om 2014. Photo in promotion of the Filipino American Symphony Orchestra's Holiday Pops Concert on December 9 at the Arcadia Performing Arts Center.
The “La Pieta” scene from the GOD Faith Choir’s 2014 play “The Station of the Cross, Via Dolorosa Pantomime” in 2014.

4. The choir had the honor of performing at the Tulak Karunungan (Learn the Knowledge) Benefit Concert, spearheaded by 2009 “CNN Hero of the Year” Efren Peñaflorida. A teacher and social worker, Peñaflorida founded Dynamic Teen Company, an organization that offers education to underserved Filipino youth as an alternative to street gangs. And each year, the GOD Faith Choir performs at the City of Carson Philippine Independence Day Mass, at Veterans Park!

Watch the GOD Faith Choir on Saturday, December 9 at 6:00 p.m. at the Arcadia Performing Arts Center! Celebrate the holidays with us and support tons of talented FilAm artists at our Holiday Pops Concert. You can purchase tickets online through this link or through our ticket extraordinaire, Andy Tecson, at 323.467.5096. The Arcadia Performing Arts Center is located at 188 Campus Drive, Arcadia, CA 91007. See you all there!

Picture of Reymond Umali at the St. Philomena Fiesta Concert
Reymond Umali (on the right) at the St. Philomena Fiesta Concert.

This article was written in memory of the GOD Faith Choir’s Assistant Director Reymond Umali, who recently passed away on November 18 of this year. FASO sends its condolences to Reymond’s family, friends and fellow parish community members.

A headshot of Janelle Feraro in promotion of the Filipino American Symphony Orchestra's Holiday Pops Concert.

Artist Spotlight: Janelle Feraro

A headshot of Janelle Feraro in promotion of the Filipino American Symphony Orchestra's Holiday Pops Concert.

Happy early Thanksgiving, FASO fam! Today, 12-year-old powerhouse vocalist Janelle Feraro, a featured artist at our Holiday Pops Concert, is under the spotlight!

1. Born in San Francisco, Janelle started singing at the age of 3. Her first public performance was at her church, the Crossroads Christian Center!

A photo of Janelle Feraro with her World Championship of Performing Arts awards in promotion of the Filipino American Symphony Orchestra's Holiday Pops Concert.
Janelle Feraro with her World Championship of Performing Arts awards.

2. Janelle is a proud member of Bantay Bata Voices (BBV), based in San Jose, Calif.! This awesome ensemble regularly organizes fundraising events to benefit underprivileged families and survivors of child abuse in the Philippines.

3. A decorated vocalist, Janelle has won an impressive number of awards and honors. In July 2016, she brought home 3 gold medals and 2 divisional awards at the World Championship of Performing Arts (WCOPA) as a member of Team USA! She won the 2016 Golden Voice Anthem Contest, which earned her a spot to to open a San Francisco 49ers game with her own rendition of the National Anthem. Janelle also sang the National Anthem with her choir for the Golden State Warriors’ Filipino Heritage Nights in 2016 and 2017.

A Picture of Janelle Feraro with her Golden Voice award from the San Francisco 79ers' Golden Voice Anthem Contest in promotion of the Filipino American Symphony Orchestra's Holiday Pops Concert.
Janelle Feraro with her San Francisco 49ers Golden Voice Anthem Contest award.
A Picture of Janelle Feraro with her awards in Brazilian Jiu-Jitsu in promotion of the Filipino American Symphony Orchestra's Holiday Pops Concert.
A Picture of Janelle Feraro with her Brazilian Jiu-Jitsu awards.

4. Janelle is not only a decorated singer. She’s also a decorated yellow belt Brazilian jiu-jitsu practitioner! In 2015, Janelle brought home gold at Jiu-Jitsu by the Bay and at the Charles Gracie Invitational Tournament. She won gold again at the Charles Gracie Invitational Tournament in 2016!

5. This summer, Janelle lent her voice to Spark of Creation Studio‘s Polynesian dance troupe Te Pura O Te Rahura’a. Their collaboration took flight at the 2017 Tahiti Fête of San Jose, the largest Tahitian dance competition in the United States!

Watch Janelle Feraro on Saturday, December 9 at 6:00 p.m. at the Arcadia Performing Arts Center! Celebrate the holidays with us and support tons of talented FilAm artists at our Holiday Pops Concert. You can purchase tickets online through this link or through our ticket extraordinaire, Andy Tecson, at 323.467.5096. The Arcadia Performing Arts Center is located at 188 Campus Drive, Arcadia, CA 91007. See you all there!

Photo of Vox Kapelle in promotion of the Filipino American Symphony Orchestra's Holiday Pops Concert at the Arcadia Performing Arts Center.

Artist Spotlight: Vox Kapelle

Here at FASO, we love engaging and collaborating with choirs in our community! Our December 9 Holiday Pops Concert at the Arcadia Performing Arts Center features seven choirs from around the Greater Los Angeles area. We believe these choirs deserve time in the spotlight, both on- and offstage. So we’ll be featuring a few of them in this round of our spotlight series. Today, the choir Vox Kapelle is under the spotlight!

Photo of Vox Kapelle in promotion of the Filipino American Symphony Orchestra's Holiday Pops Concert at the Arcadia Performing Arts Center. Contributed by Christine "Teng" Cayatano
A picture of Vox Kapelle after their first ever performance at Teng and Christian’s wedding.

1. In 2011, Christine “Teng” Cayetano and her future husband, Christian, put together a group of friends and family to sing at her wedding. This group became Vox Kapelle! Teng and Christian, who coined the ensemble’s name (and is also a flutist!), continue to lead the group together (as a musical power couple!)

2. Tagalog songs are Vox Kapelle’s specialty! According to Teng, the choir does what it can to give their Filipino American audiences a little taste of home. And as a volunteer ensemble with no auditions(!), the ensemble believes in and relies on the values of commitment and camaraderie to keep itself together.

Photo of Vox Kapelle in promotion of the Filipino American Symphony Orchestra's Holiday Pops Concert at the Arcadia Performing Arts Center.

3. Vox Kapelle serves not one, but three churches—Holy Family in Artesia, Calif., St. Paul of the Cross in La Mirada, Calif. and St. John of God in Norwalk, Calif.! The choir frequently collaborates with multiple Southern California choral collaborations as well.

A photo of Christine "Teng" Cayetano, musical director of Vox Kapelle.
Christine “Teng” Cayetano leading Vox Kapelle.

4. Last year, Vox Kapelle performed with the beloved Kuh Ledesma, and Grammy-nominated songwriter and pianist Jim Brickman at their joint Heart and Soul concert in Anaheim, Calif.!

5. And a tidbit on Vox Kapelle’s musical leader: Teng’s love of music began at the age of eight when her lola gave her her first piano lessons. Despite her initial disinterest in piano, those lessons took her places! While pursuing a bachelor’s degree in nursing at the University of the Philippines, Teng rose through the ranks of her parish’s a cappella ensemble, One Voice. And in 1996, she became its director. Now based in the United States, Teng works as an RN and continues to make music!

Watch Vox Kapelle on Saturday, December 9 at 6:00 p.m. at the Arcadia Performing Arts Center! Celebrate the holidays with us and support tons of talented FilAm artists at our Holiday Pops Concert. You can purchase tickets online through this link or through our ticket extraordinaire, Andy Tecson, at 323.467.5096. The Arcadia Performing Arts Center is located at 188 Campus Drive, Arcadia, CA 91007. See you all there!

A photo of Shane Selloria and Winston, the turtle, in promotion of the Filipino American Symphony Orchestra's Holiday Pops Concert at Arcadia Performing Arts Center.

Artist Spotlight: Shane Selloria (& Winston, The Turtle)

Sweet treats, spooky ghosts and kids in costumes–Halloween has come and gone and the holidays are around the corner. That means it’s time to get excited for our December 9 Holiday Pops Concert and our featured artists! Speaking of uncommon phenomena, this will be our first concert featuring a singing turtle! First up in this round of Artist Spotlight is 10-year-old singing ventriloquist Shane Selloria, and his friend Winston, the turtle!

1. Shane’s self-taught ventriloquist skills have earned him honors and awards! Shane recently won First Place at the 18th Annual Youth Cultural Arts Foundation Talent Show. He was finalist in Shoreline’s Got Talent too! He also attracted the attention of legendary ventriloquist of “America’s Got Talent” fame, Terry Fator. Shane had a personal meet-and-greet with Fator this past July.

A photo of Shane Selloria in promotion of the Filipino American Symphony Orchestra's 2017 Holiday Pops Concert. This is a picture of Shane after his first place win at the 18th Annual Youth Cultural Arts Foundation Talent Show. From Shane Selloria's Facebook like page.
Shane’s shock at winning this year’s YCAF Talent Show.
A photo of Shane Selloria in promotion of the Filipino American Symphony Orchestra's 2017 Holiday Pops Concert. This is a photo of Shane's personal meeting with Jerry Fator. From Shane Selloria's Facebook like page.
A photo from Shane’s meet-and-greet with Terry Fator.

2. Shane shares his talents at many community events. His most recent fundraiser was the Sari Sari Talent Show for the Filipino Cultural School, one of our community partners! Shane has also graced many special occasions such as weddings and fiestas.

3. Shane is currently auditioning for sitcom, TV commercial and modeling roles at the International Performing Arts Showcase in Hollywood. Be sure to send him lots of love, support and positive thoughts!

 

4. When he isn’t hanging with Winston, Shane likes to dance, swim and play soccer!

A photo of Shane Selloria in promotion of the Filipino American Symphony Orchestra's 2017 Holiday Pops Concert. This is a collage of a photo of Shane in soccer attire and a photo of Shane with his many swimming awards. From Shane Selloria's Facebook like page.
A glimpse of Shane’s world outside of his time with Winston.

5. Here’s a tidbit on Winston in Shane’s own words: “Winston is an impersonating turtle. He can sing, dance and levitate. People say he looks like a frog, but he is a turtle. We met at a Terry Fator show. The first thing he said to me was, ‘Wow! You can sing?’ We’ve been best friends ever since.”

A GIF of Shane Selloria and Winston, the turtle, in promotion of the Filipino American Symphony Orchestra's 2017 Holiday Pops Concert.

Watch this GIF with sound (live and not in GIF form!) on Saturday, December 9 at 6:00 p.m. at the Arcadia Performing Arts Center! Celebrate the holidays with us, and support Shane, Winston and tons of other talented artists at our Holiday Pops Concert. You can purchase tickets online through this link or through our ticket extraordinaire, Andy Tecson, at 323.467.5096. The Arcadia Performing Arts Center is located at 188 Campus Drive, Arcadia, CA 91007. See you all there!

A photo of the Golden State Warriors' good luck charm Nayah Damasen in promotion of the Filipino American Symphony Orchestra's Holiday Pops Concert

FASO presents a “Holiday Pops Concert” on Dec. 9

It will be a special, heartwarming evening when the Filipino American Symphony Orchestra (FASO), the only Filipino symphony orchestra outside of the Philippines, presents a “Holiday Pops Concert” on Saturday, December 9, 6:00 p.m., at the beautiful Arcadia Performing Arts Center.

A photo of Shane Selloria and Winston, the turtle, in promotion of the Filipino American Symphony Orchestra's Holiday Pops Concert at Arcadia Performing Arts Center.
Shane Selloria & Winston, The Turtle

FASO, praised for its immensely entertaining, outstanding concerts, will perform beloved, popular American and Filipino Christmas music with an adult choir comprising of members from Holy Family Chorale (Glendale), St. Lorenzo Ruiz Catholic Church Choir (Walnut), St. Jane Frances de Chantal Choir (North Hollywood) and Vox Kapelle Choir (Artesia), and a children’s choir combining members of GOD Faith Choir (Carson), IHMC Children’s Choir (Los Angeles) and Precious Blood Children’s Choir (Los Angeles).

A photo of the Golden State Warriors' good luck charm Nayah Damasen in promotion of the Filipino American Symphony Orchestra's Holiday Pops Concert
The Golden State Warriors’ good luck charm, Nayah Damasen

After auditions, FASO tapped talented Shane Cabellon, Nayah Damasen, Janelle Feraro and Riley Silos as youth guest performers. An exciting lineup of adult guest performers will be announced soon.

“Shane is a 10-year-old ventriloquist who sings very well,” said Louie Ramos, FASO’s vice president and one of the show’s arrangers. “He went through regular FASO auditions and competed against topnotch singers who sing in the usual way, with their mouths open.”

 

 

A photo of vocalist Riley Silos in promotion of the Filipino American Symphony Orchestra's Holiday Pops Concert
Vocalist, Riley Silos

Ramos added, “We have always featured kids in our concerts. In our interaction with the children’s parents, we noticed that these dads and moms are talented singers, too. So we will be featuring them in a group number.”

A photo of vocalist Janelle Feraro in promotion of the Filipino American Symphony Orchestra's Holiday Pops Concert
Vocalist, Janelle Feraro

Tickets at $100, $60, $40 and $25 are available through Andy Tecson (323) 467-5096. Tickets are also available here. More information at www.fasofoundation.org. Arcadia Performing Arts Center is located at 188 Campus Drive, Arcadia, CA 91007.

Statement of the Filipino American Symphony Orchestra (FASO)

On June 17, 2017, the Filipino American Symphony Orchestra (FASO) held its first fundraising and awards gala dubbed “A Night of Symphony, Excellence Awards Dinner and Gala, Inspiring and Empowering Musical Artistry” in Los Angeles. Featured as its guest of honor and keynote speaker was The Honorable Leonor G. Robredo, Vice President of the Republic of the Philippines.

FASO’s primary purpose in holding the awards dinner and gala was to recognize Filipino Americans who have exhibited excellence in the musical arts and provided generous volunteer service to the orchestra and to raise funds for its projects. These outreach programs include music workshops for the young Filipino Americans and subsidizing public concerts featuring classical music and traditional and contemporary Philippine music.

FASO is preparing for its tenth year anniversary in 2018 and some of the funds raised are earmarked for projects slated for the 2018 season.

Regrettably, a certain blogger based in Los Angeles, known by her media name as Binibining Maharlika or plain Maharlika, sought to politicize the FASO event by publicly falsely accusing FASO of secretly raising funds for Vice President Robredo. Maharlika is an avowed and vocal supporter of Ferdinand Marcos, Jr., who has waged a legal challenge for the position of Vice President of the Philippines.

In her social media accounts, Maharlika published the statement that FASO was secretly fundraising for Vice President Robredo and posted video material and photos of the event, including photos of the Board of Directors of FASO and the guests of the gala event. Maharlika also published a written commentary of the same content. The language she utilized was vile and offensive.

On the day of the event, Maharlika and a dozen or so supporters gathered at the venue location and repeated the false statements that FASO was secretly fundraising for Vice President Robredo and accosted guests who were en route to the event. Their group prominently featured a massive pro-Marcos banner.

FASO, as a 501 (c)(3) non-profit corporation, is prohibited by U.S. tax laws from contributing to any political parties, personalities, and their political purposes. FASO strictly complies with all laws applicable to it. Statements made by Maharlika and her supporters alleging FASO raised funds or financially contributed to any politician, including Vice President Robredo, are false and damaging to FASO, its reputation and the reputation of its Board of Directors and members.

These statements created the false impression that FASO has violated the terms and conditions of its non-profit status. FASO believes these statements of Maharlika and her supporters are defamatory in nature.

One of the participants at the protest rally organized by Maharlika was one Fernandico Gonong, Jr., who is the current president of the non-profit corporation known as the Filipino American Communities of Los Angeles (FACLA). Mr. Gonong was interviewed at the rally and he fully endorsed Maharlika’s false statements and questioned FASO’s invitation of Vice President Robredo in its event. Mr. Gonong also posted, on his Facebook wall, the YouTube clips of Maharlika which featured her defamatory statements about FASO.

Ironically, a few days after the FASO fundraising gala, Mr. Gonong invited a Philippine political figure. He welcomed Philippine Senator Nancy Binay at a formal FACLA event in Los Angeles.

FASO takes these false allegations seriously and has properly sought the assistance and advice of counsel in this regard. FASO protects and promotes the interests of its members as well as the Filipino American community it has lovingly served for nine years. FASO shall advisedly, prudently, and soberly consider the proper course of action at the present time. It reserves for itself all rights and remedies accorded to it under the law.

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For any inquiries, please contact FASO legal counsel, Claire N. Espina, Edelberg & Espina, APLC, (818) 708-7791 or reception@edelbergandespina.com.

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