Zonta Club of Cebu II shares women’s universal stance on various gender issues through different types of stage arts to commemorate the 18 Days of Activism against gender-based violence.
Women ARTivism (Art+Activism) is described as an artistic uprising – a celebration of the beauty and strength of empowered women through a mix of art and activism. The entire production was adopted by Abay sa Kahayag committee of Zonta Cebu II, as a major activity in the calendar of the 18 Days. The stage was the lawn in Oakridge Garden Plaza, at sunset, on November 26, 2023.
Councilor Cynthia Cinco Remedio’s welcome address, she highlighted the importance of the Abay sa Kahayag: 18 Days of Activism for the Elimination of Violence Against Women.
Zn. Sarah Mae Enclona Henderson shared the event’s rationale and highlighted the impact of art on social change and betterment.
Zn. Sarah Mae Enclona-Henderson, chair of Women ARTivism 2023, explained that the production uses the power of performing arts to convey messages about the advocacies. The performances could be. a song, a dance, a poem or a monologue, which I can amplify the voices of women.
“The performing arts can call for transformational changes among the audience”,
Ms. Enclona-Henderson said.
We’d like those attending (the Women o ARTivism) to pick out the different advocacies that we have,” she added. “Women who want to share their advocacies need not go to the streets. They can use their art to send a message.”
The concerns include climate change, women empowerment, gender-based violence, and life as an activist, among others,
To kick off WOMEN ARTIVISM with intensity and fire, 2TinCans Theatre Company Members Ami Lavadia, Riza Binarao, and Richell Ann Basiga performed the monologue “Ang Rebolusyon Nagpuyo Sa Akong Lawas”, a Bisaya translation of Eve Enslers “My Revolution Lives in the Body”
2TinCans Theatre Company Members Mikee Amagsila, Richel Ann Basiga, Davelyn Cuenco and Apple Abarquez perform The Strong Women Anthem (Power/Born This Way/Edge of Glory Mashup) – an unabashed anthem for all the bold, badass women who own their strength.
2TinCans Theatre Company Member Sheilla Pestano-Gemperoa performs “Woman” by celebrated playwright Tariq Ali, a profound monologue that gives voice to the suffering and resilience of women enduring occupation, exploitation and violence across the world – from Palestine to Iraq and beyond.
In the short play “Mga Misteryo sa Kinabuhi ni Maria”, student performers Mila Lagahit, Francine Imperial, Chrysania Nakila, Vanessa Feje, Ishi Jugo, and Isa Limbaga unravel the all-too-common stories of Filipina women enduring unspeakable violence inflicted by the patriarchy.
There were three monologues – Ang Rebolusyon Nagpuyo sa Akong Lawas by Riza Binarao, Ami Lavadia and Richel Ann Basiga, Woman by Sheng Pestaňo Gemperoa, and Movie Stars by Charlene Virlouvet. Ms. Virlouvet explained that Movie Stars highlights the effects of climate change.
In the first of 3 segments entitled Say Her Name: female performing artists who fought for women’s rights, Zn. Chona Tremedal & Zn. Marilou Cañizares pay tribute to Judy Garland and Lea Salonga.
Zn. Chona Tremedal & Zn. Marilou Cañizares, Zn Flor Miel, Zn Mildred Simolde, Zn Hazel Espina, and Zn Betty Veloso performed Say Her Name A Tribute to Female Performing Artists who Fought for Women’s Rights. The 2TinCans Theatre Company did a dramatic reading of Trafficking.
2TinCans Theatre Company Members Mikee Amagsila, Richel Ann Basiga, and Davelyn Cuenco return to channel resilience and courage in a performance of “FIght Song”
In the second “Say Her Name” segment, Zn. Flor Miel & Zn. Mildred Simolde pay tribute to Eve Ensler and Mindy Kaling by sharing their accomplishments and contributions to the cause.
2TinCans Theatre Company Members Sheilla Pestano-Gemperoa, Vanessa Feje, Riza Binarao, and Ami Lavadia unveil the horrific realities of human trafficking through the eyes of Filipina survivors in a dramatic reading of “Love, Hate, Trust, Sex, Drugs”
WOMEN ARTIVISM host and powerhouse vocalist Apple Abarquez slowed things down with an uplifting song that rallies us to face humanity’s suffering with hope, not helplessness in a performance of “Stand Up For Love”
Apple Abarquez performed the Fight Song while Mikee Amagsila, Richel Basiga, and Davelyn Cuenco delivered two songs, Stand Up For Love and the Strong Women Anthem – Power/Born This Way/Edge of Glory mashup.
The audience also witnessed a short play, “Mga Misteryo sa Kinabuhi ni Maria” while the University of the Philippines Sayaw Evolution performed Babayeng Mag-uuma, Pangunahing Pwersa, a contemporary dance revolution against land industrialization and militarization.
In the third and last “Say Her Name” segment, Zn. Hazel Espina & Zn. Betty Veloso pay tribute to revolutionary women Yoko Ono and Jane Fonda.
In a dance performance entitled “Babayeng mag Uuma, Pangunahing Pwersa!” by University of the Philippines Sayaw Evolution, they gave voice to the struggles of indigenous women fighting to protect ancestral lands.
Through poetic metaphor awakening us to take ownership of the planet and willing is to confront humanity’s destruction of Mother Earth, 2TinCans Theatre Company Managing Director Charlene Virlouvet performes “Movie Stars” by IN-Q.
The program ended with Zontians leading all performers in dancing to the Zonta Cebu II Anthem.
Photo op with Zontians and all WOMEN ACTIVISM performers.
Zn Enclona-Henderson explained that the human trafficking piece is based on real-life stories from interviews of trafficking survivors in Cebu.
The goal is that through the different stage art forms, the message pierces the hearts, and that the emotions of the audience start flowing to create empathy and commitment to help STOP THE VIOLENCE!!