FASO Children’s Ensemble

A photo of the tutti curtain call at the Filipino American Symphony Orchestra's Holiday Pops Concert on December 9, 2017 at the Arcadia Performing Arts Center.

FASO to mark 10th anniversary with a special concert, Nov. 3

The Filipino American Symphony Orchestra (FASO) will celebrate its 10th year as the only Filipino symphony orchestra outside of the Philippines and as an enduring Fil-Am cultural institution with a special concert on November 3 at the historic Alex Theatre in Glendale, California.

FASO, winner of the 2017 San Diego Fil-Am Humanitarian Foundation’s Historical Heritage Excellence Award, will go all out in presenting an anniversary concert, “FASO@10: A Decade of Music, Harmony and Community,” worthy of its impressive decade-long run as an acclaimed orchestra.

Led by conductor and musical director, maestro Robert “Bob” Shroder, the orchestra, noted for its entertaining, quality concerts and excellent guest performers, will look back at its well-received shows and will look forward to its exciting future.

A photograph of Robert "Bob" Shroder, musical director and conductor of the Filipino American Symphony Orchestra.
Filipino American Symphony Orchestra Music Director & Conductor, Robert “Bob” Shroder

Guest performers will include Joey Albert, Pete Avendano, Joan Cano, Kit Navarro, FASO Children’s Ensemble and Alumni, Holy Family Filipino Chorale, Pacific Vocal Artists, Philippine Chamber Singers-Los Angeles and the Waraynon Initiative Network (WIN) Chorale.

“It is quite an accomplishment for us Filipino musicians to be able to put together and sustain a major musical institution outside of the Philippines,” said Shroder, who was born and raised in the rich musical environment of Cavite in the Philippines.

“It’s a wonderful opportunity to be able to work with a diverse group of talents from different walks of life. The high level of inspiration, learning and dedication of every musician and guest artist during rehearsals is always something to look forward to.”

“Even amid challenging issues, language and cultural barriers, no matter how difficult the situation might be, we still bring a high level of musicianship. It proves that music really is a universal language,” Shroder said further.

“A decade can be a long time but it was short and fast for us because of the hard work and dedication of our board of directors, the support and understanding of our families despite the long hours away from home while taking care of FASO business and the continued support of our friends and the community. It is with great honor and pride to celebrate the 10th year anniversary of FASO. Mabuhay!”

FASO board member Claire Navarro Espina, who is a lawyer, shared, “As project chair of the anniversary concert, I am making sure that FASO plays to a full house. This concert is FASO’s big thanks to Southern California and all of the orchestra’s patrons. We intend to fill every seat of the Alex Theatre. The concert will be a celebration of FASO and will surely harken to the past but it will point all of us to the future of immense possibilities for this unique organization.

“In connection with the concert, FASO is publishing a commemorative book to chronicle, in written and visual form, the orchestra’s beginnings, evolution and growth. A copy of the book will be sent for inclusion in the United States Library of Congress to evidence FASO’s contributions to the history of immigrants in this great country.”

Arlene Ferrolino, FASO board president who is a music educator, said, “The FASO board is composed of many different personalities from various areas of expertise, all brought together to work toward the common goal of sustaining the orchestra. Leading this group has truly been an amazing ride so far! From its humble beginnings to this milestone 10th year, the orchestra’s journey has not always been a smooth and easy road but it has certainly been a thrilling and memorable experience.

“Each workshop, recital and concert – from the planning to the performance, from behind the scenes till the moment the curtain rises – has been a labor of love on the part of every musician, board member and volunteer. Bringing our mission to life through the various programs that we offer can be an incredible challenge but the joy that it brings to our audiences makes it worth all the time and effort.”

Members of combined children’s choruses from the Filipino American Symphony Orchestra’s “Holiday Pops Concerts.”

Dr. Louie Ramos, FASO vice president and resident arranger who is a computer scientist, pointed out the community outreach programs of the orchestra, a non-profit organization:

“We are so thrilled to see FASO’s education and outreach programs grow and expand every year, providing opportunities to budding artists of all ages to improve their vocal and instrument performance and songwriting skills.”

Ramos added, “As part of our 10th anniversary celebration, we are performing the winning folk song compositions in our first International Composition Competition. We look forward to the next 10 years of enrichment of Filipino culture.”

Be a part of this history-making event as FASO celebrates 10 years of Filipino musical creativity and artistry on Saturday, Nov. 3, 7 p.m., at the Alex Theatre, on 216 N. Brand Blvd., Glendale, CA 91203. Order tickets online here and check out info on the Alex Theatre’s physical box offices here. Children 2 years of age and under may enter for free. Student discounts and group rates apply. Contact Louie Ramos at luisramos91201@gmail.com, for more info on those special prices.

There are also advertising and sponsorship opportunities! Our 10th anniversary Commemorative Book, which will highlight the orchestra’s legacy and future, has a special advertisement section. Here, members and friends of FASO can submit their own written tributes to the orchestra. Businesses can also submit advertisements that highlight their own services. You can also make a donation and get listed in the book on our Donors & Sponsors page! Find advertisementforms here and view sponsorship forms here! Send all forms for advertisements and sponsorships to ads@fasofoundation.org no later than September 25Questions? Email Claire Espina at claire@edelbergandespina.com

Sylvia La Torre and Anna Maria Perez de Tagle Perform with FASO

The Philippines’ legendary entertainer, Sylvia La Torre, and her granddaughter, Broadway performer and TV-film actress Anna Maria Perez de Tagle, are special guest artists in Filipino American Symphony Orchestra (FASO)’s summer family concert on August 13.

La Torre and Perez de Tagle will perform a duet and solos with FASO, the only Filipino symphony orchestra outside of the Philippines. The beloved icon and her talented granddaughter singing with a full orchestra will be a landmark Filipino-American musical event.

FASO, under the baton of musical director and conductor Robert “Bob” Shroder, will also play “Peter & the Wolf,” Sergei Prokofiev’s beloved children’s classic (to be narrated by Joan Almedilla), cherished movie and television tunes, including themes from “Star Wars” and “Harry Potter,” Broadway favorites and Filipino music gems.

Titled “FASO Plays Prokofiev’s ‘Peter & the Wolf,’ ” the exciting concert for children and adults will be staged on Saturday, August 13, at the John Wayne Performing Arts Center at 1440 E. Broadway, Glendale, California 91205.

It will be La Torre and Perez de Tagle’s first musical collaboration with FASO. La Torre, a national music treasure who joined a singing contest at the age of five in 1938 in Manila, is acknowledged as the first Filipino artist to enjoy a hugely successful career in all major entertainment fields in the Philippines: radio, television, record, stage and film.

Now based in California, La Torre, known as the Queen of Kundiman and also for her fondly remembered “Ibyang” character in the pioneering days of Philippine entertainment, continues to be a dynamic performer.

Perez de Tagle debuted on Broadway in the acclaimed 2011 revival of “Godspell” where she earned good reviews. The singer-actress’ credits include the film version of “Fame” and the TV shows, “Hannah Montana,” “Camp Rock” and “Camp Rock 2: The Final Jam.” With several records under her name, Perez de Tagle, whose early singing coach was her famous grandmother, has toured with Demi Lovato and the Jonas Brothers.

The FASO Children’s Ensemble will also be spotlighted in the latest concert of FASO, which is noted for its entertaining and quality concerts. The trailblazing orchestra is comprised of volunteer musicians from various sectors of the Fil-Am community.

Festivities on August 13 begin at 4:00 p.m. with an orchestra instrument petting zoo and face painting in the theater lobby and food trucks in front of the theater on Broadway Street. Bring your “Star Wars” lightsabers and “Harry Potter” wands. The concert starts at 6:00 p.m.

For tickets, call Andy Tecson (323) 467-5096; Bob Shroder (818) 395-8936; and Arlene Ferrolino (213) 248-9850. Tickets are also available on Eventbrite. Tickets are at $30, $40, $60, $75 and $100.

A non-profit organization, FASO is led by a board of directors dedicated to keeping FASO as a Fil-Am cultural institution for many generations to appreciate. The board is made up of Arlene Ferrolino (president), Luis Ramos (vice president), Susan Legaspi (treasurer), John Mina (secretary) and directors Charina Carrera, Claire Espina, Jose Luis Garcia, Amirah May Limayo, Wendy Mazon, Ruben Nepales, Rocio Nuyda, Asuncion Ojeda, Carmelita O’Neil and Edwin Raquel.

Multiple Grammy nominee David Benoit is an honorary member.

FASO Plays Prokofiev’s ‘Peter & the Wolf’
August 13, 2016
Festivities at 4:00 p.m. & Concert at 6:00 p.m.
John Wayne Performing Arts Center
1440 E Broadway
Glendale, CA 91205

Filipino-American Symphony Orchestra Goes POPS! for One Night Only at the Alex Theatre

Did you know that Los Angeles is home to the only Filipino symphony orchestra outside of the Philippines? For the past seven years, the Filipino-American Symphony Orchestra, led by conductor and music director, Robert Shroder, has charmed audiences with its artistry, dedication to excellence and passion for beautiful music.

On November 14, FASO will, for the first time, venture into the pop realm for its latest concert, FASO Goes Pops! The program will feature both mainstream Pop Music and Original Pilipino Music from U.S.-based Filipino composers including Oscar-winner Robert Lopez (“Let It Go”), Cecile Azarcon (“Lift Up Your Hands”), Odette Quesada (“Give Me a Chance” and “Till I Met You”), SJ Gandia (“Tayo ay Pilipino” and “Hanggang Huli’y Ikaw”), Aaron Paul del Rosario (“Minsan Lang Kitang Iibigin”) and Dodjie Simon (“Tatak ng Pilipino” and “Ikaw Lamang”). Many of them will be in attendance at the concert which takes place at the Alex Theatre in Glendale.

FASO Goes POPS! is another FASO special concert,” says Robert Shroder. “It is very exciting for us to feature the works of some of our talented U.S.-based Filipino composers and songwriters. We also auditioned local Pinoy talent to interpret their songs for this concert and have provided them a series of vocal workshops to educate and help enhance their singing techniques and musicianship. A typical pop concert is usually accompanied by a small band, often only four to five pieces, or in some cases the singers perform with tracks. This is a rare opportunity for our pop singers to perform with a symphony orchestra. It is part of our commitment to educate and provide quality symphonic programming to our community.”

Singers who wished to perform with the orchestra took part in three rounds of auditions before being chosen. The youngest will be six-year-old actress, Sophie Nack (Sadie on NBC’s Truth Be Told, along with Bryce Gomez, Ian Chen (Evan Huang on ABC’s Fresh off the Boat), Jokai Dawson, Sydney Haik, Gian Paolo Jimenez, Michael Keith Pronda, Mikaela Bautista, Therese Masangcay, Denise Gonzales, Gabrielle Current (2015 Rose Princess), Shelby Miguel, Kaitlyn Fajilan and Daryl Ogalino (ABS-CBN’s TFCkat USA Grand Singing Champion 2012 and Tawag ng Tanghalan Grand Singing Champion 2008).

They will join Dennis Jardiel, Erwin Andaya, Mike Zuniga, Nilo Alcala and Sharon Rose Orosco as guest vocalists.

Also featured on the program is the FASO Children’s Ensemble, composed of Sophie Nack, Andreas Makiling, Elizabeth Cruz, Casteen Legaspi, Nicole Padilla, Jolleen Mejia and Sabrina Evangelista.

“FASO Goes Pops! will not disappoint,” says FASO board president Arlene Ferrolino. “Staying true to its vision of being the vehicle for artistic excellence in the Filipino community and being an avenue of growth in helping to develop love and pride of Filipino music, this concert will feature the best of Filipino-American talents.”

The Filipino-American Symphony Orchestra consists of approximately 55 orchestra members. They’re computer scientists, software engineers, criminal investigators, health professionals, among other professions by day. But at night, you’ll find them making music in the rehearsal room.

November 14, 2015 (7:00 p.m.)
Alex Theatre
216 North Brand Boulevard
Glendale, CA 91203

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