The inauguration of the CCP gave Philippine culture and the arts a home. The CCP was created by President Ferdinand Marcos in 1966 through Executive Order No. 30 with the purpose of promoting and preserving Filipino arts and culture. It was formally inaugurated on September 8, 1969, starting a three-month long inaugural festival opened by the musical Golden Salakot: Isang Dularawan, an epic portrayal of Panay Island, as its initial presentation. The Center's formal inauguration was attended by a number of international personalities, including California Governor and Mrs. Ronald Reagan, who were representing President Richard Nixon.
The best artists from all over the country and around the world have graced the CCP theaters and galleries, enthralling Filipinos for over thirty years. The CCP is presently attached to the Office of the President and is under the supervision of the National Commission for Culture and the Arts as stipulated in Executive Order No. 30.
The CCP showcases Filipino artistic achievements, encourages the creation of original works inspired by Filipino themes and tradition and helps makes the arts accessible to all sectors of Philippine Society. It also initiates and supports the establishment of regional or local cultural centers in cooperation with local groups and brings together its own resident artists and other artists from the various regions through the CCP Outreach Program.
The CCP also covers film and broadcast arts, as well as the literary and visual arts, encouraging the growth of aspiring artists in these fields through numerous workshops, seminars, anthologies, exhibits, symposia, as well as through competitions and awards.
The CCP's Cultural Exchange Program supports the growth and development of arts councils all over the country through workshops and seminars. In addition, the CCP also established ties with various international organizations such as the Association of Asia-Pacific Performing Arts Centers, the Conseil International des Organisations de Festivals de Folklore et d'Arts Traditionnels, the World Dance Alliance, and the International Theatre Institute Through exchange programs with these groups, Filipinos are able to appreciate different cultures as well as witness performances of highly-acclaimed artists from all over the world.
While the Center aims to bring the culture and the arts to the Filipino masses, it is widely considered to be "imposing, unapproachable, and elitist. In this regard, the Manila Metropolitan Theater is being restored to provide an accessible culture and arts venue for the masses.
Built on reclaimed land in Manila Bay, the Tanghalang Pambansa, more commonly known as the CCP Main Building or the Theatre of Performing Arts, was designed by leading Filipino architect and National Artist, Leandro V. Locsin. It houses four theaters, a museum of ethnographic exhibits and a changing exhibit of Philippine art or ethnography, galleries, and a library on Philippine art and culture. It also houses the administrative offices and facilities of the CCP.
In 2005, the Tanghalang Pambansa and the CCP Complex were refurbished ahead of the 112th General Assembly of the Inter-Parliamentary Union (IPU) in Manila, whose opening and closing ceremonies were to be held at the Tanghalang Nicanor Abelardo. During the refurbishment, the marble façade of the Tanghalang Pambansa was cleaned and the marble trim, which was installed during its refurbishment in the 1990s, was replaced with travertine imported from Italy. During this particular repair, the building's main ramp was closed to traffic.
The 2005 refurbishment also included the repair and upgrade of the Main Building's toilet facilities, the repair of its main fountain and lagoon, the installation of a new air-conditioning system, replacing the 36-year-old system which was installed in 1969, and the installation of new carpeting. The refurbishment also brought additional grounds lighting for the CCP Complex, upgraded interior roads, including one which enabled access to the Diosdado Macapagal Boulevard. The landscaping of the 88-hectare complex was also extensively re-done.
This costs of the refurbishment were shouldered by the Bangko Sentral ng Pilipinas, the offices of Senators Franklin Drilon and Francis Pangilinan, and Malabon-Navotas Congressman Ricardo Sandoval, the Department of Public Works and Highways, and the CCP.
The building was commissioned by First Lady Imelda Marcos in 1974 for the Miss Universe Pageant, which was to be held in Manila. The theater was built in seventy-seven days and was designed by Leandro V. Locsin.
This venue has also been retrofitted with equipment with which to receive, and subsequently feature, satellite direct-to-home feeds of art and culture films and videos on the arts of the Philippines. The venue, also named Dream Theater, is part of the joint endeavor of the CCP and the Dream Broadcasting Service to promote art films in the Philippines.
The venue has a seating capacity of 100.
The Tanghalang Pambansa Building of the CCP also houses a number of exhibit halls:
The Center also has a Ps150 million theater equipped with state-of-the-art lights and sound facilities imported form Germany. Inaugurated in November 2000, the theater has a seating capacity of 1,052 with balcony and orchestra sections, a two-level lobby, an orchestra pit, four air-conditioned dressing rooms, costume cabinets, a docking area, sixteen fly battens, two motorized curtain systems (vertical and horizontal), and comfort rooms. This is the only theater of its kind in a high school campus and is the only one located in this part of Metro Manila.
The Assumpta Theater is home to modern light and sound equipment, 17 manual fly battens, a manual curtain system, a spacious stage area, an orchestra pit, fully air-conditioned dressing rooms, a docking area, stage wings, three-level seating arrangements, a lobby, and comfort rooms. The house area can accommodate 2,001 guests.
A permanent exhibit entitled Diwa: Buhay, Ritwal at Sining showcases significant Filipino artistic traditions and explores the development of Philippine art and aesthetics in the socio-cultural context.
The CCP Museum also presents special changing exhibitions, provides curatorial assistance, and organizes workshops on indigenous art forms.
Since 1972, the Cultural Center of the Philippines has administered the Order of the National Artists, whereby the Board of Trustees of the Center, in conjunction with the National Commission for Culture and the Arts, submit a list of recomendees to the President of the Philippines, who, by Presidential Proclamation, proclaims such as members of the Order of National Artists
The Center has also been host to the annual formal Presentation Ceremonies of the Ramon Magsaysay Award.
The Cultural Center is home to the following groups and institutions:
Emily Abrera is the current Chairman of the Board of Trustees of the Center. The members are:
Its current President is Nestor O. Jardin while the Center's Artistic Director and Vice-President is Fernando C. Josef.
An ambitious expansion and rehabilitation of the Cultural Center of the Philippines Complex is being proposed as an answer to the Center's perceived isolation from the masses. The proposed plan will turn the center into a venue for culture and the arts as well as a magnet for commerce.
The proposed master plan divides the current 88-hectare Complex into 5 clusters. Cluster 1, tentatively named the Lucresia Reyes-Urtula Promenade, will feature an extension of the current Baywalk, retail shops, and restaurants. A visitor center, ferry terminal, and dock facilities will be built for visitors who will be coming in by sea or by yacht. This promenade will also feature a contemporary art museum.
Cluster 2, or the Art Sanctuary, will be a strip that is solely dedicated to the arts. The Tanghalang Pambansa will serve as its anchor, along with the proposed Performing Arts Theater, which will house an expanded library, archives, and a storage facility. This will then stretch out to a 3-hectare open-air venue called Freedom Park. It will also feature a bandstand that will be named after Lucio D. San Pedro, an open space that will be named after Levi Celerio, the Antonio Molina Conservatory, and the Production Design Center.
The Breezeway, or Cluster 3, is to be a mixed-use corridor that will link the Art Sanctuary to other performance and events venue. This area will include an 8,000-seater multi-purpose hall, a Nick Joaquin Garden, an Asian Music Gallery, the National Artists Museum, the Museo ng Kalinangang Pilipino (CCP Museum), and two artists' centers to be named after Andrea Veneracion and Wilfrido Ma. Guerrero.
The Art Living Room, or Cluster 4, is envisioned to be a high-density, high-rise establishment that will house condominiums and other exhibit areas. It will also feature a public transport hub to bring the masses to the Center. It will be home to the Design Arts Museum, the Juan Nakpil Boulevard, Arturo Luz's Building as Sculpture, and Leonor Orosa Goquingco's Dancing Fountain.
Cluster 5, or Seaside, is to be a medium-density residential and shopping area and will be linked to the Gil Puyat Avenue extension.
The master plan is envisioned to be completed in 4 phases, from 2004 to 2014; five billion pesos will be needed for the plan's first five years, and another 8 billion for the plan's latter half.
On December 8, 2005, the Center announced the winners of its design contest. Three firms won for their concepts, Syndicated Architects, Manalang-Tayag-Ilano Architects, and JPA Buensalido Design. The concepts of each winner will then be presented to prospective investors and stakeholders for final approval.
Builders of Hope; (Congratulatory Message Delivered during the 2006 Ramon Magsaysay Awards Presentation Ceremonies, Held on August 31, 2006, 4:30 P.M., at the Main Theater of the Cultural Center of the Philippines.)
Sep 12, 2006; Byline: ARTEMIO V. PANGANIBAN Chief Justice of the Philippines THIS afternoon, we are assembled to pay tribute to six exceptional...