“Mr. Ilustrado is Born”
November 4, 2017
Sheraton Hotel, Silver Spring, Maryland
Mid -Atlantic Foundation for Asian Artists (MAFFAA), a non-profit organization, wanted to give back to the community. The historic inaugural Ilustrado Ball celebration was very well-attended. MAFFAA Board of Trustees are: Cora Abundo, Matthew Aninzo, Karrel Bernardo, Patrick Realiza, Ramon Sumibcay, Luis Florendo, Lorna Imperial Seidel, Suriya Kaul, Armando Obgac, and Chantele Radcliff; Legal Adviser: Yogi Patel; Advisers: Atty. Loida Nicolas Lewis, Dr. Edward Seidel and Daniel Rakosky.
MAFFAA co-founder Dr. Lorna Imperial Seidel collaborated with the Philippine Humanitarian Coalition to raise funds for the displaced victims of the Marawi conflict in the Philippines. At the same time, MAFFAA wanted to celebrate the successes of the initial series of the Le Opera Noli Me Tangere US Tour.Thus, The Ilustrado Ball was conceptualized. The Ilustrado Ball was jam-packed with diverse multi-ethnic Asian-American guests and American at-large. The entertainment portion showcased a wide range of cultural dances by the Mabuhay Youth Dancers and operatic presentations. One of the highlights of the evening was the revelation of Mr. Ilustrado. Flying trans-Pacific and across the USA, Mr. Ilustrado was Ramon Sumibcay himself. As the co-host for the evening, Ramon Sumibcay stunned the audience with his terrific renditions of great songs. Lulut Palacios Chan, host for the eveningsaid: “Mr. Ilustrado was so amazing with his fabulous performance.” Carol Manilay-Robles, PNAMDC Treasurer and PHC social mediaDirector added: “Mr. Ilustrado, you’re such a great entertainer.” Suriya Kaul, MAFFAA Director of Philanthropy, said: “Wow!! the ILustrado Ball Fundraising Gala Event was mind blowing. It was packed and attended by guests from all around United States.”
Aside from Mr. Ilustrado’s great performance, the audience was also mesmerized by MAFFAA’s opera singers. Juditha Seghers, a Soprano, impressed and amazed the audience with her unique vocal styling and incredible vocal range. John Clayton, Tenor, described as dynamic singer who performs gallantly, is a white American but put the audience in standstill by singing classic Tagalog songs. Allan Palacios Chan, a Philippine-born American Tenor dubbed as
standout performer”, brought musicality and attractive flexible “leggiero” sound. Allan is well- accomplished and well-educated with his Doctorate in Musical Arts. Recently, he was a scholar fellow at the Berlin Opera Academy in Berlin, German.
Christina Poy, Administrative Director from the Office of Maryland Governor’s Commission of Asian Pacific American Affairs and the Governor’s Commission on South American Affairs, delivered the keynote speech.State Representative Aruna Miller stated that MAFFAA has been doing great work throughout the community and the region through their promotion of international understanding and friendship with enriched cultural exchanges.
MAFFAA recognized outstanding citizens and organizations, Modern Day Ilustrados, for their altruistic and philanthropic activities throughout the United States.The three individual awardees were: Erica Lachica, Anjana Bordoloi and RamonCalalang. The two organization awardees for their sustained volunteerism were: Bicol Association of Metropolitan DC (BAMDC) and St. Jude Filipino Community Ministry, Rockville MD. Atty. Leticia Hermosa MAFFAA’s Friends of the Arts presented the awards.
Lorna Imperial Seidel officially announced Le Opera Noli Me Tangere (LONMT) Hawaii, June 8 and 10, 2018 as the triumvirate of MAFFAA, KGB Productions, and Island Living Productions and Entertainment. This is line with MAFFAA’s mission to provide EDUCATION, ECONOMICS, and SALIENCE. Luis Florendo MAFFAA’s Program Director stated; “In this time of recognizing the need for Asian representation in American mainstream media, MAFFAA’s presence and projects do more than promote Asian artists…it strengthens our collective identities as Asians, as creative beings, and as a community.
The event was so spectacular. It was made possible by the hard work of many volunteers, donors, corporate Special Project programs to provide financial support for USA Tour of LONMT. MAFFAA’s inaugural Ilustrado Ball was a mission accomplished to the superlative degree. We came, We saw, and We conquered the hearts of many. By the end of the night, we were met by the crowd with cheers and tears. And most of all, the guests were delighted with the beautiful fresh 350 orchids pinned to each guest, specially flown from Hawaii by Ramon Sumibcay, Mr. Ilustrado, the Proponent and Champion of the Arts.
“Proponent and Champion for the Arts”