CCP undergoes major rehab
Culture and The Arts

CCP undergoes major rehab

Feb 1, 2024, 8:39 AM
Rose De La Cruz

Rose De La Cruz


The 55-year-old Cultural Center of the Philippines (CCP) theater, touted in 1969 as Asia's best theater, has aged with time showing leaks and cracks in most parts of the iconic showcase of Philippine Arts and Culture, and has been under much-needed rehabilitation, which began two years ago and is now 36 percent complete.

It hopes to open its doors in 2026 but before then much is being done and designed now to make the theater sturdy and strong (amid its historically fragile ecosystem in the reclaimed portion of Manila Bay along with peers in the entire stretch of Roxas Blvd.) and future perfect (including broadcast and streamlined facilities) for all generations (at least for the next 50 more years) to enjoy, said CCP President Michelle Nikki Junia during a CCP Institutional presscon held at the newly-built airy Bamboo Pavilion within the CCP complex.

More than rehabilitating the main theater and all its halls and theaters, the CCP board might add new facilities like an archive to house all digital and physical files that can be requested for by members of the public and even educational institutions promoting Philippine arts and culture.

"To withstand any natural calamities, we are retrofitting the building and adapting sustainable options and converting into LED lighting and more eco-friendly air-conditioning. To bring the center in step with 21st century innovations, we are modernizing our facilities for digital streaming options in live performances and interactive onsite experiences. We shall retain acoustic excellence and have contracted of Japan, the best acoustician in the world. All these are under the watchful eye and approval of Heritage Conservative Center,” explained CCP Vice Chair Ma. Margarita Moran-Floirendo.

Junia said that so far, CCP obtained a budget of P950 million last year and P400 million this year to cover part of the rehabilitation process for the iconic edifice, but she hopes that they would be granted more funding by the government and private donors (including art patrons and corporations promoting arts and culture) so as to meet the scheduled completion date.

Two years ago, the CCP board approved the P2-billion rehabilitation program for the entire building and facilities.

"With inflation and higher labor and materials costs, we are doing everything to meet both our targeted budgets and deadline of completion and we hope to open our doors by 2026," she explained.

The CCP also badly needs more funds for its increasing programs and projects for the people, especially those in remote areas and those that could least afford to experience the joy that such performances bring to their hearts, Junia stressed.

Suffice to say the CCP has been staging most of its theatrical shows, balagtasan, plays and its resident symphony orchestra, the Philippine Harmonic Orchestra, to different parts of the country to educate not just the people but also the local government units on the importance of Filipino arts and culture and the importance of musical orchestra instruments (develop indigenous instruments that could be incorporated in PhilHarmonic to the lives of Filipinos and several plays and poetry reading to wider audiences in cooperation with LGUs of Metro Manila.

At the moment, CCP is also reaching out to universities and colleges offering music, arts and culture to train teachers about homegrown arts, plays, dances and musicals to ensure that they can better teach these to their students and create more astute trainers to improve the skills of their students.

Much as the CCP wants to reach out to elementary schools-- just like what Korea had been doing to its youth by training them early and young in arts and culture-- there had been little, if any, positive response from the Department of Education.

The CCP has been declared a national treasure designed by National Artist Leandro Locsin, which is why the need to preserve it at all cost.

#CCP #CulturalCenterOfThePhilippines #NikkiJunia #CultureAndTheArts #OpinYon #WeTakeAStand

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