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Sunday, June 21, 2009

RAUL SUNICO IS NEW CCP ARTISTIC DIRECTOR


Raul Sunico is new CCP artistic director
By Lito Zulueta
Philippine Daily Inquirer
First Posted 18:26:00 06/14/2009

MANILA, Philippines – Celebrated pianist and respected pedagogue Raul M. Sunico is set to become the new artistic director of the Cultural Center of the Philippines (CCP).

Sunico, the dean of the Conservatory of Music of the University of Santo Tomas (UST), will replace Nestor Jardin, who is also CCP president, and who will retire on July 26.

The transition is taking place as the CCP is set to mark its 40th anniversary in September.

It is not known whether Sunico would become concurrent CCP president like Jardin.

To become CCP president, Sunico would have to be appointed to the CCP board of trustees by Malacañang.

Sunico told the Philippine Daily Inquirer (parent company of INQUIRER.net) that he would report for his first day as CCP artistic director on Tuesday. He said he expected to meet with the CCP board of trustees chaired by Emily Abrera.

Earlier last week, Sunico said he met with UST Rector Magnificus Fr. Rolando V. de la Rosa, O.P., to discuss his CCP post and his future at the Pontifical University.

As artistic director, Sunico will be in charge of the artistic programming of the country’s foremost performing arts showcase.

Specifically Sunico will oversee the artistic programs of the CCP resident companies, such as Ballet Philippines, Tanghalang Pilipino, Ramon Obusan Folkloric Group, Philippine Madrigal Singers, Philippine Ballet Theater, Philippine Philharmonic Orchestra, UST Symphony Orchestra, and Bayanihan Philippine National Dance Company.

He will also administer the annual National Music Competitions for Young Artists (Namcya).

Since CCP is also a venue for movie screenings and visual arts exhibits, Sunico will supervise such programs as the Cinemalaya film festival and the 13 Artists Awards.

Sunico will also direct the CCP's Cultural Exchange Program, which develops arts councils all over the country through workshops and seminars.

In addition, Sunico will also oversee performances by international acts in CCP.


Formidable

Sunico (born 1948) brings to the CCP formidable credentials as a world-class performing artist, artistic impressario, and educational manager.

Sunico graduated from the University of the Philippines with the degrees of Bachelor of Music (cum laude), Bachelor of Science in Mathematics and Master of Statistics. He attended the Julliard School in New York, where he received a Master of Music degree.

He obtained his Doctor of Philosophy degree, major in Piano Performance, from the New York University, where his dissertation featured a performance guide to Philippine Piano Concertos, which is being prepared for publication by the UST Publishing House.

Sunico won the silver medal in the Votti International Piano competition in Vercelli, Italy; was a finalist in the Busoni International Piano Competition in Bolzano, Itlay; and received the Henry Cowell prize in the University of Maryland International Piano Competition in the United States. He received the TOYM (The Outstanding Young Men of the Philippines) Award for Music in 1986.

His becoming dean of the UST Conservatory, the country’s largest music school, was a sort of homecoming since he trained under Benjamin Tupas in the Conservatory when he was young.

As UST Music dean, he has joined a distinguished line of deans such as Stella Goldenberg Brimo, Erlinda Fule, Bernardino Custodio, Sergio Esmilla Sr. and National Artist Antonino Buenaventura.

Under his deanship, the UST Conservatory mounted lavish and difficult but well-acclaimed productions of Tchaikovsky’s “Eugene Onegin” (2006) and Strauss’s “Die Fledermaus” (2008), both at the CCP Main Theater.

It has also been under his deanship that UST was able to start a season of classical Christmas concerts featuring some of UST’s brightest alumni talents here and abroad, such as soprano Rachelle Gerodias, baritone Andrew Fernando, and United States-based mezzo soprano Clarissa Ocampo.

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