Seven arts and cultural organizations qualify for the Innovation Grants Project 2020, a special project implemented by the Board of Trustees of the Cultural Center of the Philippines (CCP BOT).
Among the many proposals submitted, Ballet Manila, Casa San Miguel, FilDocs Inc., Ramon Magsaysay Memorial Colleges, Marbel Inc., Sipat Lawin Inc., The Performance Laboratory and Tuldok Animation Studios will receive grants to create and produce new works in various art disciplines and distribute new contents on the arts using online technology, blended or hybrid technologies.
Ballet Manila proposes the “Silver Linings: Ballet Manila@25 (Hope and Dance in Extraordinary Times).” The project aims to celebrate the 25th ballet season of the dance company marked by a global pandemic, lockdowns, and complete stoppage of live performances. The project will showcase re-imagined presentations of classical pieces as well as new commissioned work specially developed for film as primary medium.
The project also includes “Ballet Minis,” a series of short dance films meant to reinforce Ballet Manila’s main strength of performing the classics with the Russian Vaganova discipline. The series highlights the best of the company’s classical, neoclassical, and contemporary works. Each dance film will be between five to seven minutes, featuring excerpts from full-length pieces.
The company also plans a “Silver Linings Ballet Gala,” specially conceptualized for the new normal. Embracing the fact that the stage is altered and the medium is different, the gala will showcase live performances from Ballet Manila studios and dancers’ homes and pre-recorded performances, which will be streamed live via Ballet Manila’s Facebook page and YouTube channels.
Meanwhile, Casa San Miguel’s proposal revolves around the concept of “Spring” in different iterations through music, dance, visual arts and film.
The “Spring,” a series of eight 10-15-minute episodes, is about renewal of hope, a celebration of creativity and how arts have served artists and communities as a medium for reflection and healing.
FILDOCS, INC. hopes to continue the success of DaangDokyu film festival and consolidate the achievements of the virtual cinema festival to sustain and further widen the awareness on Philippine documentaries through various projects. The organization intends to produce and distribute DaangDokyuDokBook, which contains the full program featuring over 45 documentary titles and film details, as well as essays on the study and appreciation of contemporary Philippine documentary. They also plan to have a virtual-access library which will offer private viewing of documentary films featured in DaangDokyu program and collection.
Portion of the grant they will receive will go to the development of DaangDokyu website, which will contain information on Philippine documentaries featured in the festival including creative and technical details, trailers, Q&A’s and other updates, provide free access to the DokBook for one year, feature sections such as “Reality Check” with insights from various experts, “Dokyu Scene” with ongoing developments in the documentary filmmaking, and “Artist Support” with updates and announcements beneficial to the film industry.
Ramon Magsaysay Memorial Colleges, Marbelinc. proposes “OpenStudio+OpenSeason [The Dancers are Absent but the dance is Not],” an art project undertaking non-traditional collaborations within art genres integrating the performing arts, visual arts, dance, and film. It will feature five short dance films, selected from the Juror’s Choice winners of Teatro Ambahanon’s Director’s Prize Competition; as well as an installation art to be installed at the The Nest Art[ist]s Incubation (the Teatro Ambahanon’s art space).
There is also the Salamindanaw film project seeking to create an omnibus film that delves on memory, space and body. The special screening will be staged with poets from SOCSKSARGEN composing impromptu pieces and reading them after each dance video. The project also experiments on delivering and conducting multi-platform community events and festivities via live and online technology.
Sipat Lawin Inc.’s Komunidad X Collective Business takes on “E-mahiNASYON: Community Performance Innovation for Social Change Festival,” a three-year performance innovation development platform which started in 2020 at the surge of global pandemic and will culminate in 2022, the year for the national elections.
For its first edition in 2020, E-mahiNasyon gathered 10 next-generation performance-makers working and innovating performances with and with-in communities from different islands in the Philippines to collaborate with non-theater partners as part of the “Contemporary Ritual Makers Performance Platform.” Further themes to explore will be climate change, new solidarities in time of physical distancing, citizen and voter’s education, rethinking notions of nation, queer and queering, combating discrimination and empowerment of women in children in the time of national and global crisis.
The performances and documentation of the performance processes will be shared on kXchange.org, the leading virtual center for contemporary performance in the Philippines, also an initiative of Sipat Lawin Inc’s Komunidad X.
The Innovation Grants reaches out to the regions, with The Performance Laboratory, Inc. being one of the recipients. In collaboration with Teatrokon: West Visayas Theatre Network and CCP Kaisa sa Sining Regional Arts Center Partners in Negros Occidental, the Performance Laboratory, Inc. launches “Ang Mga Alates,” a series of four short plays tackling current and relevant societal issues and incorporating stories of realities brought by the ongoing COVID-19 pandemic — as part of the weekly staged readings of plays written by emerging Negrense playwrights featured in The Blackbox Presents.
The staged readings will be developed into full productions for the Kuris Theatre Festival in February 2021, and will be part of an online web series to be premiered next year. Producing a web series based on theater production is the group’s way of exploring and experimenting on migrating one artform into another medium.
Tuldok Animation Studios Inc. creates an ‘Edutainment package for Cultural Advocacy: Reimagining Cultural Advocacy through Integrated and Synergized Edutainment (RISE),” which will include two five-minute animated folktales and one Pinoy komiks folktale with mobile app for augmented reality (AR) component. The project aims to inspire Filipino artists to create compelling, world-class animated films highlighting the Filipino myth and legends. Through this, the organization hopes to raise awareness on the rich Filipino folk heritage through modern re-telling using new technology.
The Innovation Grants was CCP’s calibrated response to the pandemic situation affecting the creative industry and art communities. Through this, the CCP hopes to realize non-traditional collaborations within art genres or between arts and other fields or professions, and deliver community-wide, multi-platform events and festivities using novel ways of distribution and dissemination.