Launching of Kapampangan TV Drama
A highlight of Aldo Ning Amanung Sisuan
By Jason Paul Laxamana
Central Luzon Daily
Last 27th of August, the public—including the members of the Sangguniang Panlalawigan, Sangguniang Panlungsod of the City of San Fernando and Angeles City, Pampanga Mayors and Vice Mayors, the media, and civil society and business groups—became witness to the Grand Premiere of 'Kalam,' the first ever Kapampanganovela in the history of Philippine broadcasting. It was held at the Event Centre of SM City Pampanga.
The event, however, is more than a presentation of the pilot episode. Rather, it is Kalalangan Kamaru's and Infomax 8's way of celebrating the recently-appointed Aldo Ning Amanung Sisuan (Mother Language Day), the two entities being aggressive advocates in the promotion and development of the Kapampangan language through media arts.
The event begins with the University of the Assumption President's Choir singing the Lawiwing Pambansa (National Anthem) in the Kapampangan language, followed by our very own Imnu Ning Kapampangan and then Fr. Ronnie Cao's invocation. The kabalen energy begins when the performers from the Angeles University Foundation danced to well-known Kapampangan folk songs, then segueing to an enchanting trilingual (Tagalog, English, Kapampangan) choral version of the popular O Jo, Kaluguran Da Ka.
In between guest speeches, Kapampangan musical numbers of diverse genres were presented. The list includes the boy group K4ad (read 'Kapatad'), Tarlac-City based Kapampangan band Mernuts, ArtiSta. Rita, and the Kapampangan novelty sensation Ara Muna.
A surprise announcement, which garnered a loud, long applause from the audience, was made by hosts Rey Yumang and Mau Aquino of the Kapampangan talk show 'Personalan'—that 'Kalam' will also be aired through G-SAT in 40 Asian and Middle Eastern countries, including Malaysia, Taiwan, Japan, Indonesia, Viet Nam, Korea, and Hong-Kong.
After the projector screening of the first episode of 'Kalam' titled Panyatang King Salapungan (Arriving at the Fork Road), the following people had these to say (interviews care of Jenna Lumbang of 'I-Max News'):
“Masanting ya talaga. In fact, me-inspire kung gamitan ya ing Amanung Sisuan tamu. But really, to me, it's really perfect. From the script to the camera shots, angles, values na pinalalabas niya at ini-impart niya. Napakagaling. Saludo ako. It's really something both the young and old should watch.” -Dalsa Montalban Hizon, TV personality / ArtiSta. Rita Foundation, Inc.
“Congratulations! This is a first for the Kapampangans. Ing 'Kalam' pu, atneng kasanting. Agkatan ko ring kayabe tamung Kapampangan, sana pu tangkilikan ye pu. The best ya pu.” -Chris Navarro, President, Pampanga Press Club
“Beyond expectation ya ing ikit kung primerung telenobelang Kapampangan. Ding eganaganang linage magaling la. Deng king behind-the-camera magaling la. Sana dakal la pang mag-sponsor bang kanita sumulung ya aliwa mu ing telenobela nune pati ing kulturang Kapampangan. Pagmaragul kung Kapampangan ku.” -Engr. Rosve Henson, Kambilan
“First ya pa mu ini at very interesting neng tambing.” -Oca Rodriguez, Mayor, City of San Fernando
“Masanting ya pu! Sabi ku pin, ati yu itang suporta tamu para karing kayanakan ampo para king kultura. Asahan yu pung ing PML sumuporta ya king 'Kalam'.” -Mayor Dennis Pineda, President, Pampanga Mayors' League
“Metung yang masanting a proyektu. Mai-inculcate ya ing kulturang Kapampangan, oneng ing metung pang achievement keni, ing identity ning Kapampangan siguradung lunto ya.” -Eduardo Guerrero, Mayor, Municipality of Floridablanca
“Aku, mesorpresa ku. E ku isipang makanyan ya kasanting. Mániwala kung maging yang launching pad ding future Kapampangan stars ing 'Kalam' uling papakit na ing gelingan ding Kapampangan. Atna kanyaman daramdaman ing sarili mung lengguayi king metung a telenobela. Sana lalu yang mamayagpag ing 'Kalam' at makapamiye yang oportunidad karing Kapampangan bang sumikat la king field ning arts.” -Alex Patio, Councilor, City of San Fernando
“Masaya ku bilang Kapampangan uling atin kalupa na nini. Atin tamu talagang talentu. Parati tamung mág-excel. Dian teng masanting a bukas ing Kapampangan at dian ulaga ing kekatamung Amanung Sisuan.” -Reden Halili, Councilor, City of San Fernando
“Dios ko, kasanting na! Sana aldo-aldo ne kanyan. Ngeni, once a week bang pantunan de pa mu ring tau. Pero king tutuki, dapat aldo-aldo ne. Masaya ku na meging kamin dálan bang mag-materialize ya ini anya suportan mi ya ini. Ipagmaragul ta ya pu.” -Catalina Bagasina, Board Member
“Pupugayan ku la kening proyektung ini. Sana dakal pa ing anti kanini bang milimbag ya ing kekatamung kaugalian at mapreserba in kekatamung pibatan.” -Atty. Zenaida Ducut, Chairwoman, Energy Regulatory Commission
“Very historical. Dapat iikot sa buong Pilipinas itong nagawa dito sa Pampanga to inspire other language communities to do the same. I've been talking to the director, willing kami na i-assist sila. Iikot natin ang experience na ito.” -Ricardo Nolasco, PhD, Head, Komisyon sa Wikang Filipino
Also present were the main cast of the TV drama, namely Edith Chu, Raco Del Rosario, Jayvie Dizon, Nicolette Henson, Aries Yap, Reachel Mucho, Alex Tiotuico, and Peter Danganan; Kalalangan Kamaru members Diego Marx Dobles (Asst. Director) and yours truly (Writer-Director); the whole team of Infomax 8, including Joven Mallari as the director of the Grand Premiere; Andy Alviz of ArtiSta. Rita; Roland Quiambao, Ben and Deng Escasa, and Peter De Vera of ASLAG Kapampangan; Vice Mayor of Masantol Bajun Lacap; Vice Mayor of Angeles City Vicky Vega; Bicong Del Rosario of the Academy of Performing Arts (APA) and family; and Abong Tayag, President of the Advocacy for the Development of Central Luzon (ADCL), and some members.
'Kalam,' a Kapampangan word which means gift or blessing, is a co-production between Kalalangan Kamaru and Infomax 8. It bases its story from Kapampangan folklore, but situates folk elements in an urban setting. Consisting of 13 episodes (one season), it will air very soon. Keep visiting http://kalamtv.blogspot.com and reading this newspaper for updates.