UST Conservatory of Music, Phl Embassy Hold Workshop for Volunteer Teachers and Filipino Children in Sabah

28 August 2016 - The Philippine Embassy in Kuala Lumpur and faculty members of the University of Santo Tomas (UST) Conservatory of Music lifted up the spirits and brought cheers to the Filipino community in Sabah when they held a two-day music workshop for volunteer-teachers and students in Filipino community-run alternative learning centers in Sabah on August 17 to 18 at the Calvary Charismatic Centre in Kota Kinabalu. 

A product of good partnership between the Embassy and the UST Conservatory of Music, four renowned music experts travelled to Kota Kinabalu to share their expertise on music and music education to the volunteer-teachers of the Embassy-supported alternative learning centers (ALCs). 

The visiting lecturers were the multi-awarded performer and associate conductor of the Philippine Philharmonic Orchestra Professor Herminigildo Ranera, the Conservatory’s Associate Dean Eugene De los Santos, music education expert and a K-12 consultant on music curriculum Dolores Tecson-Andres, and multi-faceted tenor and voice instructor Ronan H. Ferrer. 

Some 25 volunteer teachers from Stairway to Hope Learning Center, Vision of Hope Learning Center, and Learning Translation and Review Centre Penampang, attended the two-day interactive workshop, as well as volunteers from other learning centers and locally-based church choirs. 

During the workshop, they were taught the basics of music reading/writing, music education methods, vocalization and choir singing.  The participants were also taught creative ways to engage students on music education classes and various methods of creating their own music activities. 

In addressing the participants during the opening ceremony, Minister and Consul General Maria Antonina M. Oblena, who spearheaded the project, emphasized the importance of culture and music in people’s lives. 

“As our volunteer teachers strive to teach Filipino students basic education and life skills, introducing them to the Filipino culture through music and folk songs would allow these children to connect with their Filipino roots,” Consul General Oblena said. 

“Music is the language of the spirit. It not only brings forth hope, joy and fulfillment but also spreads goodwill and cheers to other members of Sabah society. As peace-loving and musically-inclined people, Filipinos can take pride and continually share the joys of music to others.” she added. 

The participants were deeply appreciative of the conduct of the workshop. “This will help us in our musical activities, especially in preparing our students for chorale singing in the coming festivities and school presentations. I hope the Embassy will not tire in facilitating these kinds of workshops for us,” said teacher Mary Ann Santorio. END