ONE YEAR AFTER: TACLOBAN IN THE EYES OF ANDERSON COOPER  

NOV 12 --One year has passed since Typhoon Haiyan (local name Yolanda) claimed the lives of roughly 6,000 innocent people. Families were broken, hopes were crushed and darkness seeped through the hearts of every Filipino. Since Nov. 8, 2013 until this day, the devastation still haunts us from time to time. In an interview with CNN’s Anderson Cooper, Pia Hontiveros took him back to his coverage of Typhoon Haiyan in Tacloban City, one of the most affected areas. READ FULL REPORT...WATCH VIDEO INTERVIEW.

ALSO: 1 year after Yolanda, int’l community reaffirms recovery support 

PHOTO: U.S. Ambassador to the Phl Philip Goldberg ---This November 8 will mark one year since Typhoon Haiyan devastated central Philippines, killing nearly 8,000 people and leaving millions displaced in its wake. One year after super Typhoon Yolanda (Haiyan) devastated the Visayas and parts of Luzon, the international community reassured the Philippines of their continued support for recovery work.

ALSO: One year or so ago, Korina gets 360-degree bitch-slapping 

NOV 15, 2013 ---SHE. IS. MADE. Our very own Korina Sanchez has cemented her status as the best broadcast journalist to ever walk on Philippine soil after landing a once-in-a-lifetime spot on CNN. We watched with immense pride and admiration as the Fighting Pride of Mother Ignacia took on CNN’s Anderson Cooper for criticizing the Philippine government’s highly organized and timely response to victims of Super-typhoon “Yolanda.” READ FULL REPORT

ALSO the unforgetable: CNN’s Anderson Cooper versus Noynoy Aquino on the Typhoon Yolanda situation: like fact versus fiction 

NOV 14, 2013 ---There is now an ongoing battle for the truth about the real situation in typhoon-ravaged areas amidst the tragedy that is still unfolding a week after super typhoon Yolanda (Haiyan) left the Philippines. On one side, members of the international media are giving factual reports from the ground at the disaster zone. On the other side are people from Malacanang including President Benigno Simeon “BS” Aquino who are giving a much rosier update from a cozier distance. READ FULL REPORT...

ALSO and today: A year after deadly Yolanda, Basey (Samar) women inside a cave weave their magic 

PHOTO: Typhoon Yolanda (Haiyan) survivors weave 'tikog' mats in a cave in Basey, Eastern Samar on Thursday, November 6. A year after one of the world's most powerful storms smashed into the Philippines, a group of women are stitching their lives back together by weaving colorful reeds used in handicrafts and sold by the world's top retailers. Reuters/Erik De Castro --BASEY, Eastern Samar – A year after one of the world's most powerful storms smashed into the Philippines, a group of women are stitching their lives back together by weaving colorful reeds used in handicrafts sold by the world's top retailers. READ FULL REPORT...

ALSO: Mark as Ferdinand Marcos shines in 'Here Lies Love' 

Mark Bautista outside of the National Theatre on London’s south bank after performing in the rock/disco musical on the night of Nov. 10. He treated visiting media friends to a quick dinner at a nearby Chinese restaurant, before rushing to take the train to the apartment that he shares with some co-performers. LONDON — Did you know that Gloria Romero plays a prominent “role” in the rock-disco musical Here Lies Love which has been drawing record crowds since it opened at the Dorfman Theatre (at the sprawling National Theatre) in London first week of October? The film clips (including those showing Sen. Ninoy Aquino delivering a passionate speech prior to his assassination at the tarmac upon his arrival from exile in the US, Imelda partying back home and in the US as if there were no tomorrows, etc.) helped in recreating the period in Philippine history that served as backdrop of Imelda’s long night’s journey into day, from her humble beginnings in Leyte (where she reigned as Rose of Tacloban) to how Marcos swept her off her feet and turned her into a Steel Butterfly and to how People Power drove them into foreign shores. READ FULL REPORT...

ALSO: Big changes in GMA news line up 

Last night, you might have been surprised to see new faces in your favorite GMA Newscasts. The 24 Oras tandem of Mel Tiangco and Mike Enriquez has a new addition in the person of Vicky Morales, hopping from the late-night news Saksi to the early evening newscast.READ FULL REPORT...


READ FULL MEDIA REPORTS:

Tacloban in the eyes of Anderson Cooper

MANILA, NOVEMBER 17, 2014 (PHILSTAR) One year has passed since Typhoon Haiyan (local name Yolanda) claimed the lives of roughly 6,000 innocent people.

Families were broken, hopes were crushed and darkness seeped through the hearts of every Filipino. Since Nov. 8, 2013 until this day, the devastation still haunts us from time to time.

In an interview with CNN’s Anderson Cooper, Pia Hontiveros took him back to his coverage of Typhoon Haiyan in Tacloban City, one of the most affected areas.

He remembered fathers and mothers holding their tired heads high, terrified children clinging to what they could not comprehend and an atmosphere that evoked frustrations, anger and fear.

In the interview, Anderson explained how it was to be exactly in the right place at a time where the world yearned for a voice that can acknowledge, understand and empathize. He was reminded of the dignity and strength Filipinos carried even in the heaviest of hearts.

Amidst all those, Anderson remembered the resilience, the spirit and the strength of the Filipino soul.

He recognized that despite the pain and suffering Haiyan caused, Filipinos still chose to be on the road to recovery.

THE INTERVIEW From 9News in the Philippines::

In November last year, journalists from all over the world told the story of Super Typhoon Yolanda's aftermath. Their fresh perspective inspired and encouraged Filipinos, who were going through the worst of tragedies.

One of those journalists was CNN's Anderson Cooper. On Friday (November 7, 2014), he looked back at his experience covering that story in an interview with 9News chief correspondent Pia Hontiveros. This interview aired on Friday, November 7 on Network News

 
VIDEO URL: http://www.youtube.com/feature=player_embedded


FROM GMA NEWS NETWORK

1 year after Yolanda, int’l community reaffirms recovery support November 8, 2014 12:59pm 644 10 0 763 Tags: Super Typhoon Yolanda Commemmorating Yolanda Commemmorating Yolanda.


U.S. AMBASSADOR TO THE PHILIPPINES

This November 8 will mark one year since Typhoon Haiyan devastated central Philippines, killing nearly 8,000 people and leaving millions displaced in its wake.

One year after super Typhoon Yolanda (Haiyan) devastated the Visayas and parts of Luzon, the international community reassured the Philippines of their continued support for recovery work.

The United States Embassy, in a statement, reassured the Philippines of its support for Filipinos' resilience via long-term measures.

"Whether this was temporary assistance with food, water and shelter, or long-term assistance with building new weather-resistant school and health buildings, training emergency responders, or integrating disaster preparedness into local school curriculum, the United States remains dedicated to the Philippines," it said.

In a YouTube video, US Ambassador Philip Goldberg said they have been working with Philippine authorities in the recovery and rehabilitation stage.

Goldberg, who arrived in Manila less than a month after Yolanda hit, said they are working with the Office of the Presidential Adviser on Rehabilitation and Recovery.

"The idea that the international community will always come to the aid of the Philippines in these kinds of situations happen again, and they will," he said.

The US said its military efforts included more than 13,400 military personnel, 66 aircraft including 10 C-130s to augment the Armed Forces Philippines’ three aircraft along with eight MV-22 Ospreys and 12 naval vessels.

It also delivered more than 2,495 tons of relief supplies and evacuated over 21,000 people.

"Since last November, the United States government, through USAID, US Department of State and the US Department of Defense, has provided assistance worth more than six point four billion pesos (P6,425,217,370 or $143 million) to help those affected by Typhoon Yolanda to rebuild their lives. The United States is one of the largest bilateral donors to support post-typhoon recovery efforts," the embassy said.

Australia

Meanwhile, Australia gave a similar reassurance via Ambassador Bill Tweddell


REMEMBER THIS? LAST YEAR AMID THE YOLANDA DEVASTATION?
FROM The Spin Busters online
READING BETWEEN THE LINES, REPORTING BEHIND THE SCENES

Korina gets 360-degree bitch-slapping Posted on November 15, 2013 by spinadmin1 Standard
coopkorina

SHE. IS. MADE.

Our very own Korina Sanchez has cemented her status as the best broadcast journalist to ever walk on Philippine soil after landing a once-in-a-lifetime spot on CNN.

We watched with immense pride and admiration as the Fighting Pride of Mother Ignacia took on CNN’s Anderson Cooper for criticizing the Philippine government’s highly organized and timely response to victims of Super-typhoon “Yolanda.”

(We believe Jose Rene Almendras when he strongly insinuated, as fed to him by Dinky Soliman, that those so-called Leyte victims begging for help on TV were actually paid movie “extras” hired by BS Aquino’s political enemies to shed fake tears and discredit his efficient administration. The rotting bodies piled up on the streets were actually movie props for a World War Z sequel, Tacloban edition.)

Ate Kuring didn’t let it pass when that parachuting Cooper told the world that “there is no real evidence of organized recovery or relief” in Tacloban. But he didn’t know what he was talking about, Korina protested in her radio program, sounding like she wanted to mess up Anderson’s neatly combed hair. That you never do to Anderson!

So big was the impact of Korina’s morning rant that Cooper, despite his busy coverage, took notice of the ant making noise from the molehill. He denied ever saying that, “there was no presence of the Philippine government on the ground.”

“I’ve seen the work that’s being done and the work that isn’t being done,” he said on AC360 this morning.

Then came the stink bomb.

“Ms. Sanchez is welcome to go there and I would urge her to go there. I don’t know if she has, but her husband as interior minister, I’m sure he could arrange a flight,” he said.

Thanks to Cooper, the world learned that this “radio broadcaster” questioning the accuracy of the CNN report is in fact “the wife of the interior minister who’s overseeing the relief effort on the ground.”

BOOM! BOOM! BOOM! KABOOM!

Cooper’s seemingly innocuous statements were loaded, announcing to the whole world — including those lounging in CNN Partner Hotels — the context of Korina’s journalism. It’s one shaped by conflicts of interest, tolerated and abetted by her own bosses at the Kapamilya network. Ate Kuring got bitch-slapped so hard that she spun 360 degrees.

But Cooper was just getting started.

He then took on BS Aquino, who, in case Cooper didn’t know, is an ex-boyfriend of Korina. But that was well in the past, waaaaay before she fell in love with Mar Roxas, the camera-shy, all-business public servant who had quite a struggle with CNN reporter Andrew Stevens in Tacloban. We’ll surely remember how he also directed traffic in the city three years from now.

We’re not sure if in Anderson’s book, Korina’s separate love stories with the political BFFs had to do with her appreciation of facts in her own typhoon coverage.

The day before Cooper advised her to see Tacloban for herself, Ate Kuring had flown in, but to Ormoc where residents complained of having received no relief assistance for days since Yolanda flattened their community.

Korina was in town to “investigate” whether the complaints were true. And true to her role as the interior minister’s wife, she found out how the victims were slowly rising up from the disaster. It’s a spin straight out of the Palace propaganda manual: let’s talk about hope and resilience to divert attention from BS Aquino’s Category 5 incompetence.

But the truth could not be ignored. Halfway into her TV Patrol report on Nov. 14, Korina was forced to reverse her Nov. 13 self. She came across a family who had not received the promised manna from Mar since Yolanda took everything from them. Good thing she switched to first lady mode and began distributing goodie bags, making sure the camera wouldn’t miss the heartwarming scene – verily a story of “resilience, hope, and faith” befitting the journalistic vision of BS Aquino.

That same day, Mr. Korina Sanchez went to another Leyte town, Tanauan, and delivered a truckload of promise that help would soon arrive. That was Day 6 since the disaster.

Luckily for BS Aquino, Cooper has since mellowed down from his famous “Katrina” outburst, which saw the CNN pretty boy dressing down Louisiana Sen. Mary Landrieu for unloading piles of BS instead of relief for hurricane victims.

It’s exactly because Cooper is a foreign journo that he is immune to Benigno-coccemia, that debilitating disease that credits all the good in this universe to BS Aquino.

He has the proper and universal notion of accuracy, one that would never buy BS statements like, “Umasa po kayong darating agad ang tulong paghupa ng bagyo.”


FROM PHILNEWS.PH ---JANUARY 4, 2014

Korina Sanchez Resigned & Vacates Her Radio Show on DZMM by ED UMBAO on JANUARY 4, 2014

Korina Sanchez officially vacates her radio talk show on DZMM, six weeks after she got involved in a controversial rift against CNN anchor Anderson Cooper during the aftermath of super typhoon Yolanda that hits the Visayas last November.

Rated Korina

In a news report posted by Interaksyon on January 4, Korina Sanchez will vacate her post as radio anchor, starting on Monday, January 6, as DZMM announced their new program “Sakto.”

The new DZMM program “Sakto” will be hosted by Amy Perez and Marc Logan which will air on Monday to Friday at around 10-11 AM time slot on DZMM. The time slot was previously occupied by “Rated Korina” since January of 2012.

According to our showbiz insiders, Korina Sanchez resigned and vacated her radio show during the same day that new host Amy Perez posted an announcement on her Twitter account.

The controversy involving Korina Sanchez started last November 13, 2013 when she spoke out against Anderson Cooper’s on-the-ground coverage of the typhoon’s aftermath in Tacloban, which caught the veteran news anchor in hot water as netizens reacted negatively to her statement.

Korina Sanches uttered the following statement:

“Itong si Anderson Cooper, sabi wala daw government presence sa Tacloban. Mukhang hindi niya alam ang sinasabi niya. (This Anderson Cooper, he said there is no government presence in Tacloban. It seems he doesn’t know what he is saying.),” said Sanchez, the wife of Interior Secretary Mar Roxas.

The remark of Korina Sanchez got a disapproval in social media, the next day, Cooper replied directly to her comment and urged her to go to Tacloban but instead she went to Ormoc City.

Various rumors have circulated online that Korina Sanchez had been suspended by ABS-CBN, Korina denied the rumors, claiming that she was only on leave from the show.

She returned briefly to “Rated Korina” in early December, but offered no explanation for her lengthy absence.


ONE YEAR AGO, NOVEMBER 14, 2013 ---FROM GETREALPHILIPPINES.COM

CNN’s Anderson Cooper versus Noynoy Aquino on the Typhoon Yolanda situation: like fact versus fiction November 14, 2013by Ilda


Telling it like it is in Tacloban: CNN's Anderson Cooper

There is now an ongoing battle for the truth about the real situation in typhoon-ravaged areas amidst the tragedy that is still unfolding a week after super typhoon Yolanda (Haiyan) left the Philippines. On one side, members of the international media are giving factual reports from the ground at the disaster zone.

On the other side are people from Malacanang including President Benigno Simeon “BS” Aquino who are giving a much rosier update from a cozier distance.

While CNN journalist Anderson Cooper reporting from Tacloban City observed that he sees “no real evidence of organized recovery or relief” effort coming from the Philippine government where he is at, the same day President BS Aquino was giving a “reassuring” report during an interview with CNN studio reporter Christiane Amanpour that the Philippine government’s relief and rescue operations were well on its way.

The President even said, “all national roads have been reopened and most national airports are back to operating levels”.

Amanpour’s professionalism remained commendable despite her receiving some ambiguous responses from BS Aquino.

Others would have asked for pictures as proof of the President’s claims, or else it hasn’t happened. In fact, ground reporter Cooper was actually reporting live and showing actual footage from the ruins of Tacloban airport. The picture he showed was grimmer.


Bluffing his way through an interview: President BS Aquino

From Cooper’s vantage point, there were hundreds of people sleeping at the airport because there was nowhere for them to go and if one would just walk three blocks away from the airport, there were also people sleeping in makeshift huts or out exposed to rains even lying next to the bodies of their loved ones because these had yet to be picked up.

He said there was also very little water and food supply because there was no feeding station, which according to him, was what one would expect after five days.

The journalist added that he only heard of talks about the airport being opened again by the US marines but it hadn’t happened yet. He warned that the situation is getting desperate and that sooner or later something is bound to give.

To make matters even stranger for outsiders like Cooper, Filipino news anchor Korina Sanchez who also happens to be the wife of Department of Interior and Local Government secretary, Mar Roxas became defensive and said that Cooper doesn’t know what he is talking about.

Sanchez probably thought that her husband’s directing traffic on the streets of Tacloban could be considered a rescue operation. Thank goodness no one takes her seriously nowadays especially since she hasn’t even been to the disaster zone.

Cooper has covered quite a number of disasters overseas and he seemed to be in shock over the lack of real urgency in the Philippine government’s response to the tragedy. To quote:

When I was in Japan, right after the tsunami there two years ago, within a day or two, you had Japanese defense forces going out, carving up cities into grids and going out on foot looking for people, walking through the wreckage. We have not seen that here in any kind of large-scale operation.

It is too sad to hear Cooper say that it is not really clear to him and some of the international troops who exactly is in charge of the Philippine side of operations.

The lack of real leadership in times of crises is now becoming obvious to the international community.

As one reporter from ABC news claims, the Philippine government has become paralysed in the face of the disaster:

Villeamor Airbase – home of the Philippine Air Force and the main staging area for relief flights to the disaster zone – seems to be operating at half-speed. There is no thrum of activity, no evidence that there’s a real sense of urgency among the Philippine troops here.

Every once in a while a civilian car pulls up and unloads a few boxes of goods some neighbors have collected. They put them on the sidewalk and drive away. A little while later, some Filipino troops (or reporters) move them inside. No method. No organization. It’s as if an earthquake hit southern California and Vandenburg or Nellis AFB were quiet and half-populated.

The U.S. Marines have swung into action, certainly. But there are just 215 of them right now, and they must coordinate with the Philippine government. As one high-ranking officer told me here about the host government, “They’re paralyzed.”

An Israeli Foreign Ministry official confirmed that impression privately to me. The Israeli team is here to assess what their country can contribute and where. Over the years, Israel has developed excellent field hospital capabilities that they’ve brought to disasters in Haiti and elsewhere.

But the Israelis, too, need to coordinate with the Philippine government. “When we ask them what they need, they tell us to talk to the Americans,” the official said.

The lack of leadership in the Philippines makes some Filipinos wish that foreign troops could just take over administration of the country forever. The Philippine government has become irrelevant.

Members of congress are only good at grandstanding during Senate hearings in the guise of “aiding legislation” that hardly ever result in any significant outcomes.

Hopefully, the deaths of thousands of Filipinos during the super typhoon will not be in vain because this disaster is finally exposing the incompetence of the Aquino government not only to the rest of the Filipino people, but also to the rest of the international community.

Even back in 2011, the Aquino government was already being held accountable for the deaths of over a thousand people in Mindanao during typhoon Sendong. Kabataan party-list Representative Raymond Palatino already highlighted the Aquino government’s refusal to allot funds for disaster preparedness in the 2011 calamity fund.

Fast forward to 2013, the Aquino government is certainly even less-prepared and ill-equipped to handle a much bigger disaster than Sendong.

It must be a real mystery to the international community why year after year, the Philippines is never prepared for the arrival of typhoons when in fact, during the interview with CNN reporter Christiane Amanpour, BS Aquino admitted that we get visited by at least 20 typhoons every year.

It is as if the Philippine government has become desensitized to the people’s suffering when it comes.

The rest of the interview with BS Aquino was cringe-worthy as expected.

Amanpour hardly got a straight answer even when she asked simple questions.

When Amanpour asked, “How do you manage to reassure your people?”

The President responded as if he was talking to someone stupid:

We have been able to demonstrate as a government and as a people collectively that we take care of each other and that the government’s initial response was reassuring to the vast majority of our people. Our ability to take care of our problems rather quickly…


Should the US military takeover administration of the Philippines?

I can imagine people shaking their heads in disbelief at BS Aquino’s claim that the “government’s initial response was reassuring”.

The President doesn’t seem to be in touch with reality because chaotic scenes in video footage and photos being circulated around the world do not show a reassured public. Someone needs to inform BS Aquino that the Filipino public along with the rest of the world are actually worried about those who are starving and going mad with desperation.

In one of her final questions, Amanpour asked how BS Aquino would respond to people who will judge his Presidency on how his government responded to the crisis.

Aquino's response seemed to trivialize the number of deaths caused by the super typhoon, which he claims is “only” about 2500. He kept emphazising that the government’s efforts to warn the public minimized the casualties and this time, did not include sinking ships:

I think you can ask all the governors of the areas that have been saying that our making them aware the dangers of the typhoon enabled them to move their population from danger areas into safer areas and thereby minimizing casualties. A lot of them with the exception of Leyte province, eastern and western Samar have reported practically of one or two or even zero casualties wherein normally when we have a typhoon, we will also have ships that were travelling that would have sunk casualties in the hundreds, probably merit too much attention. So the knowledge, the geo hazard mapping, the knowledge imparted to all of them enabled them to reduce the risk inherent in all the disasters that visit us.

It was hard to filter out all the bullshit, indeed. One death is one too many.

For BS Aquino however, if the number of casualties is less than 10,000, it is an indication that the casualties were minimized and it is thanks to the efforts of his government. Never mind the fact that he is not even basing his statements on any formal statistics.

The battle to find the truth about the true state of the Philippines will continue.

Let us hope the international community will not give up on the Filipino people and help win back the Philippines from the lies of the Aquino regime. [Photo of US military plane courtesy Interaksyon.com.]


TODAY NOVEMBER 7, 2014 FROM GMA NEWS NETWORK

A year after deadly Yolanda, Basey women weave their magic By ROLI NG and ROSMARIE FRANCISCO, ReutersNovember 7, 2014 11:01am 1206 7 0 1306 Tags: Super Typhoon Yolanda


Typhoon Yolanda (Haiyan) survivors weave 'tikog' mats in a cave in Basey, Eastern Samar on Thursday, November 6. A year after one of the world's most powerful storms smashed into the Philippines, a group of women are stitching their lives back together by weaving colorful reeds used in handicrafts and sold by the world's top retailers. Reuters/Erik De Castro

BASEY, Eastern Samar – A year after one of the world's most powerful storms smashed into the Philippines, a group of women are stitching their lives back together by weaving colorful reeds used in handicrafts sold by the world's top retailers.

Their workshop is a far cry from the high-end shops selling their products such as handbags and homewares on 5th Avenue in New York.

Sitting in one of the caves dotting the seaside highway of Basey town in central Philippines, about a dozen women weave the reed plant, known as tikog, which is sold to sustain their families still struggling to make ends meet after Typhoon Yolanda (Haiyan) left more than 7,000 dead or missing last Nov. 8.

"Weaving helps feed our families. But we haven't really recovered, we still don't earn enough," said Marilyn Corpus, 46, from inside the cave whose cool temperature helps preserve the grass.

Amongst the despair and devastation wrought by Yolanda – the strongest storm ever recorded to hit land – hundreds of women weavers have emerged as the main breadwinners in their families.

Most of the weavers say they received relief and building materials for their homes from foreign and local NGOs and private groups, but none from the government, possibly because of their remote location.

But theirs is a rare story of hope in the region's rural economy, which was mainly dependent on the coconut groves destroyed by the storm.

In a country where about one in four people lived below the poverty line at the beginning of last year, Haiyan drove another 1.5 million Filipinos into the extreme hardship of living on less than $1 a day.

The UN's International Labor Organization (ILO) says nearly 6 million lost their jobs immediately after the typhoon – mostly retailers, service crew, coconut farmers, fishermen.

Most of those from the 44 worst-hit provinces in the center of the country decry the government's relief effort.

Data from the UN humanitarian team working in the disaster areas shows that more than half of the 1.05 million houses damaged by Yolanda remained totally destroyed or unsafe as of July. The government estimates it needs almost P170 billion ($3.8 billion) to rebuild all Haiyan-affected communities.

Some of the coconut farmers are now growing vegetables and have livestock, while some fishermen have returned to the seas, albeit only to shallow waters reachable by their unmotorized boats. But for most of the typhoon victims, a more sustainable livelihood is still far from sight.

"We're seeing very good signs of recovery, but we're not there yet," said Michel Rooijackers, deputy director for Philippine operations of Save the Children, adding that recent studies show many of the poor survivors "are just meeting their survival level, so they are getting by, just getting by."

Almost 25,000 people still live in tents, shelters and bunkhouses in the hardest hit regions in central Philippines, including Tacloban City, considered Yolanda's ground zero as it accounted for almost half of the death toll.

Holding families together

A year later, Samar's women weavers stand out as being among the most resilient and industrious workers.

Weeks after the typhoon, aid organizations identified the weavers as being critical in holding families together – both socially and as primary income earners. They were given training and funding to optimize their household standing.

Philippine fashion company Banago, whose bags and home accessories are made from mats produced by Basey weavers, has doubled its workforce since the storm to about 1,000 weavers. The Banago range is a top seller at high-end retail stores such J. Crew, Anthropologie, Nordstrom and Macy's.

Haiyan washed away Banago's entire production facilities in Basey, but the company's founder Renee Patron and her partners decided to restart their business a few months after the disaster struck.

"The typhoon made the business more focused, and it also gave me the opportunity to learn much more about the women... and how we can make their lives better," said Patron.

"We had the women rebuild their homes and after that we just tried to get them back to work," said the US-based merchandiser and fashion designer. – Reuters


FROM PHILSTAR

Mark as Marcos shines in Here Lies Love FUNFARE By Ricky Lo (The Philippine Star) | Updated November 17, 2014 - 12:00am 0 0 googleplus0 0


Mark Bautista outside of the National Theatre on London’s south bank after performing in the rock/disco musical on the night of Nov. 10. He treated visiting media friends to a quick dinner at a nearby Chinese restaurant, before rushing to take the train to the apartment that he shares with some co-performers.

LONDON — Did you know that Gloria Romero plays a prominent “role” in the rock-disco musical Here Lies Love which has been drawing record crowds since it opened at the Dorfman Theatre (at the sprawling National Theatre) in London first week of October?


FLASHBACK: Luis Gonzales, Luis Mercado in real life, acted in more than 100 movies, most of which were under Sampaguita Pictures and costarred with his favorite leading lady, Gloria Romero, in the 1950s. He played Marcos in the political propaganda movie “Iginuhit ng Tadhana” in 1965 and in the drama film “Pinagbuklod ng Langit” in 1969. Romero, who played First Lady Imelda Marcos to his Ferdinand, recalled that they could only start shooting in Malacañang after office hours at 6 p.m. and wind up at 6 a.m. the next day. In spite of the unusual working hours, Gonzales would remain cheerful, Romero said. “He was a jolly fellow. He was always joking around and he loved dancing,” she told the Inquirer. Batangas Gov. Vilma Santos said Gonzales portrayed her father in her first movie “Trudis Liit” in 1963. Then a child star, Santos also played little Imee in the two Marcos movies.

No, Gloria doesn’t appear personally on the stage of the venue that is actually a disco but she does bigger than life in the film clips flashed on the monitors showing her as former First Lady Imelda Marcos, with the late Luis Gonzales as Pres. Ferdinand Marcos, from the Marcos propaganda biopic Pinagbuklod ng Langit which chronicled the whirlwind courtship of the former First Couple.

The film clips (including those showing Sen. Ninoy Aquino delivering a passionate speech prior to his assassination at the tarmac upon his arrival from exile in the US, Imelda partying back home and in the US as if there were no tomorrows, etc.) helped in recreating the period in Philippine history that served as backdrop of Imelda’s long night’s journey into day, from her humble beginnings in Leyte (where she reigned as Rose of Tacloban) to how Marcos swept her off her feet and turned her into a Steel Butterfly and to how People Power drove them into foreign shores.

I was here for the Hunger Games: Mockingjay 1 junket last week and, thank heavens, I had one free night to watch Here Lies Love (written by David Byrne and Fatboy Slim, and still playing in New York where it premiered in 2012) with my friends Gorgy Rula, Noel Ferrer and Allan Diones (here for a holiday), together with new friends Emmanuel Arches with niece Trina Salveron and Dawn Saladores who flew in from L.A. purposely to watch the musical — specifically Mark Bautista who plays Ferdinand Marcos.


With Natalie Mendoza(as Imelda Marcos)

The night’s performance was sold out (in fact, all playdates are, until the final show on Jan. 8, 2015). Luckily, somebody didn’t claim his served Balcony Level ticket (worth 45 pounds) and I got it. Gorgy, Noel, Allan and company were at the orchestra section and therefore right where the action was — dancing around the T-shaped center stage that moved 360-degrees slowly while the audience danced along with the actors on it, with Mark in dark pants and bow-tied white long-sleeved shirt leading the opening dance number, sexy as he had never been back home, his chinky eyes winking at every turn, thus giving his Marcos a flirtatious touch. Bongga!

Natalie Mendoza has been getting the lion’s share of the critics’ praises for her engrossing portrayal of Imelda who, if she kept her promise to watch the musical when she got to London, would give Natalie not just a gentle tap on the shoulder but a tight, warm hug. The play is mostly dancing and singing, true to Imelda’s legendary love for both, and Natalie more than lived up to the challenge.

Thankfully, Mark proved a perfect match beside Natalie, proving his mettle not just with his singing and dancing but even in the dramatic scene where he lay in his sickbed singing while Imelda sat in near tears beside him.

Gia Macuja-Atchison and Dean John-Wilson as Ninoy Aquino likewise deserve a big bravo(!) for fleshing out Imelda’s childhood friend Estrella Cumpas and Ninoy Aquino, respectively with impressive ease, proving themselves more than worthy of the roles’ demands.

Imelda and (some of) her relatives may not find Here Lies Love (the epitaph Imelda wanted on her grave) flattering but, our group agreed, it immortalizes her as an icon like no other, with the film clips showing her at her prime, so beautiful that she launched a thousand sighs heard ‘round the world.

Our hats off to Mark who’s performing seven days a week.

“It’s quite tough,” admitted Mark over a quick dinner at a nearby Chinese restaurant after the night’s performance. “Bawal magkasakit, so I have to take as many vitamins as I can, get enough sleep, keep in shape by exercising regularly and resisting temptation to take it easy.”

Add to that the chores that he himself has to do (doing the grocery, doing the dishes, cleaning his pad, etc.), with weekends spent doing the laundry.

“It can get boring sometimes,” added Mark, “so I break the boredom by cooking for my roommates. I don’t share the food because I eat a special diet which I myself prepare.”

After Here Lies Love, what?

There are opportunities opening up in London and, in fact, Mark has already auditioned for a play (he refused to reveal what it is).

Will Here Lies Love be extended? Will it go on national or international tour with Mark still in it? The answers will be known by end of this month.

The disco-musical requires a special kind of stage and that might be easy to do if ever it is mounted in Manila. But with its controversial theme, wouldn’t some people file a TRO against it?

Meanwhile, we excused Mark and bade him good night and goodbye as he disappeared into the London night to catch the train back to his apartment and tuck up his Marcos character, only to step into it the next night and the many more nights until Jan. 8.


FROM THE MANILA STANDARD

Big changes in GMA news line up By Isah V. Red | Nov. 10, 2014 at 06:00pm


Vicky Morales joins news anchors Mike Enriquez and Mel Tiangco in 24 Oras

Last night, you might have been surprised to see new faces in your favorite GMA Newscasts.

The 24 Oras tandem of Mel Tiangco and Mike Enriquez has a new addition in the person of Vicky Morales, hopping from the late-night news Saksi to the early evening newscast.


Pia Arcangel with Arnold Clavio in Saksi


The newscast has been a household name since 2004 when GMA News and Public Affairs launched what would be the network’s flagship nationwide primetime newscast.

Monday also saw the rebranding of GMA’s regional newscasts into the 24 Oras brand, delivering the news in the distinct 24 Oras style all over the country.

Late-night news Saksi with Arnold Clavio has a new face as well. News corrrespondent Pia Arcangel goes on board as Clavio’s new co-anchor.

Connie Sison takes Arcangel’s place as Raffy Tima’s co-anchor in Balitanghali on GMA News TV.

The weekend 24Oras Weekend on GMA 7 will still have Jiggy Manicad and Pia Arcangel, while Balitanghali Weekend on GMA News TV continues to be anchored by Mariz Umali and Jun Veneracion.

“These changes reflect our goal to inject a new dynamism to our newscasts, while still remaining true to our commitment to Serbisyong Totoo—the hallmark of GMA News and Public Affairs,” says Senior Vice President for News and Public Affairs Marissa L. Flores.


Chief News Editor: Sol Jose Vanzi

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