By Nickie Wang/ Manila Standard Today
When asked if pursuing a political career ever crossed his mind, Gary Valenciano’s answer was a big “No,” punctuated with conviction. He has his own way to selflessly touch other people’s life and that is through his talent and passion for music.
Gary V. will stage a two-night concert at the Bro. Rafael Donato Center for the Performing Arts at La Salle Green Hills on June 5 and 8. The musical treat dubbed Back Home is part of the LSGH’s year-long celebration of its golden anniversary.
The concert is the highlight and the culminating event of SING-kwenta, a series of mini concerts that started September last year. According to an LSGH official, Gary V.’s Back Home concert also marks the exact date of the school’s foundation day which is on June 8.
In a press conference held last week at LSGH’s Cesar Cruz Hall, the seasoned artist detailed some of the exciting musical numbers that will surely bring the audiences on their feet or go down memory lane. A secret no more, he said that he will also share the stage with his children, who are all members of the La Sallian community. Paolo is a graduate at the De La Salle University, Gabriel is an LSGH Batch 2005 alumnus, and Kiana is an incoming senior at La Salle Antipolo.
“The La Sallian community is very much like family. I felt like why not have my children in the concert, they are all from La Salle anyway. It’s different, the venue is small, and it’s very intimate,” Mr. Pure Energy shared.
Gary V., an LSGH Batch ’82 alumnus and recipient of the DLSU La Sallian Achievement Award in 2007, is doing the concert for free. The proceeds of the special musical show will benefit the Bahay Pag-asa and the One La Salle Scholarship Foundation, which aims to raise P1 billion. The amount will be used to fund the full scholarship of some 18,000 students out of the 90,000 population of the De La Salle schools in the country. In other words, one in every five students people meet in any La Salle campus will be a scholar. As of this year, the One La Salle Scholarship Foundation has raised about P200 million and hopes to generate at least half a million peso from the fundraising concert of Mr. Pure Energy.
The program of One La Salle Scholarship Foundation started in 2007 and the officials of the foundation are on a mission to raise the whole amount by 2011. Emmanuel Canalog, development office director at LSGH and organizer of the SING-kwenta series, noted that 2011 is the centennial of La Sallian presence in the Philippines.
“This will help us share the gift of La Sallian education to deserving students, give them a voice in our academic community and open them up to a richer dialog all over the country,” Canalog said.
“What I’m proud about is the fact that there is a drive, as to whether the target would be met this time, we don’t know. But we will continue to create certain events that will make us meet that target,” Gary stated and discussed about how members of the La Sallian community support each other most especially during events that aim to create awareness geared toward the improvement of the whole community.
“When there is a vision like this that requires people to participate, there is a guarantee that the whole community will get involved,” the energetic performer added.
Back Home concerts are the 18th and 19th showcase of the SING-kwenta concert series. The Powerplay band will provide the back-up music. The concert will be under the musical direction of another LSGH alumnus, Mon Faustino.
Held every other week for the past nine months, SING-kwenta has featured other LSGH alumni who also have remarkable musical careers. It’s good to note that all of them were members of La Salle Green Hills’ famous Kundirama musical group. Some of them are Ogie Alcasid, Rannie Raymundo, Carlo Orosa, Dingdong Avanzado, Dingdong Eduque, Juan Miguel Salvador, Louie Ocampo, Montet Acoymo, Charlie Ysmael and Von de Guzman.
Ticket prices at Gary V.’s concert are at P5,000 (VIP), P2,000 (Gold), P1,000 (Silver) and P750 (Bronze). Tickets are available at the LSGH Development Office (727-3760), Genesis (721-4406) and Studio V (726-4614).