In 1987, China-born Maningning Miclat held her 1st solo exhibit of Chinese paintings entitled “Maningning: An Exhibit of Chinese Brush Works” at the Cultural Center of the Philippines. The 15- year old artist, the youngest who exhibited that year at CCP, was a trilingual poet and writer and an awarded artist adept at both Chinese Si Junzi Hua (Four Gentlemen’s Painting of bamboo, orchid, plum blossom & chrysanthemum) and Western style of painting. Her abstract oil painting, “Trouble in Paradise,” was the grand winner in non-representational painting of the Art Association of the Philippines in 1992. Her trilingual book of poetry, “Voice from the Underworld,” was a 2001 National Book Award finalist.

Twenty years after that 1st exhibit of the artist who passed away in September 2000, the Maningning Miclat Art Foundation which was founded in her honor, will present “MANINGNING : AN EVENING OF POETRY AND MUSIC” at Philamlife Theater. The occasion will celebrate and award the winners of the 2007 Maningning Miclat Poetry Competition in Filipino, English and Chinese and present a musical concert by three of the most talented and celebrated singers in the country -- Cynthia Alexander, Susan Fernandez, and Girl Valencia.

Cynthia Alexander is a singer-songwriter-producer-arranger-multi instrumentalist all rolled into one. She has won awards for her solo work “Insomnia & other Lullabyes” in 1997, Rippingyarns in 2000, and Comet’s Tail in 2005. She won NU107 Rock awards for 1st Female Icon in 2004 and Best Guitarist and Producer of the Year (with Angee Rozul) in 2005. She is a fixture in the local alternative music doing gigs at Conspiracy Café among others.

Susan Fernandez is a performing vocal artist, freelance voice talent, a researcher for advertising agencies and a senior lecturer at the Department of Socio-Anthropology at the Ateneo de Manila University. Her “Habi at Himig” is an album of original Filipino songs she independently released in 1990.

Girl Valencia, the youngest of the 3 songbirds, finished B.A. Communications at Ateneo de Manila University. She was awarded the 1995 UNESCO Peace Prize of Excellence in writing songs of hope and peace. She was also the recipient of the 2005 National Book Award for Children’s Literature for her book, “The Christmas Fireflies.” A TV commercial model and product endorser, Valencia is a featured performer at Richmonde Hotel.

“Maningning: An Evening of Poetry & Music” will present the winners of the Trilingual Poetry Competition P28,000.00 each and a Julie Lluch sculpture trophy. Excerpts from the winning poems in English, Filipino and Chinese divisions will be read in the awards/concert. This is the 5th year of the Maningning Awards. The Maningning Miclat Art Foundation, Inc. (MMAFI) has been holding poetry competition during odd numbered years and painting competition during even numbered years. In 2005, MMAFI held “Triptych/Tatluhan” Poetry Awards/Concert at the CCP. In April this year, we had “Banaue In Concert” to support further activities of the foundation and featured Banaue Miclat singing arias and excerpts from operas and kundimans as well as some West End & Broadway songs.

MMAFI has undertaken many projects, among which are the books, Beauty for Ashes: Remembering Maningning, an anthology of poems, essays, elegies and letters written by award-winning and promising young and old poets of the country, and Yin Ming-Voice from the Underworld, Maningning Miclat’s book of poetry written in Chinese, English and Filipino. Published by Anvil Publishing, both books were finalists in the prestigious National Book Award for Poetry chosen by the Manila Critic’s Circle in 2002 and 2001 respectively. Last year, Beyond the Great Wall : A Family Journal was published and launched at the Shangri-La National Bookstore and at the Library of Congress, Washington, D.C., Virginia Tech, Blacksburg, Virginia, and in East Side New York. The book is about the 15-year experience of the Miclat Family in the People’s Republic of China where Maningning and her sister, Banaue, were born.

The poetry awards and concert is sponsored by San Miguel Corporation, Emerson Network Power, Huatong Xinli Flooring Co. Ltd., World News Publications, and National Commission for Culture and the Arts. For ticket reservation, pls. call or text 0918-9057311 or call 812-4885/6. You can also get tickets from Philamlife Corporate Affairs Office ( Tel. 526-9250/72/65). Email, and log on to


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