10th Anniversary Celebrations

January 16, 2017

A very brief history of pageants in the Philippines

by Johsa Manzanilla  (Published in Pilipino Express January 16-31)

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Get your tickets to ANAK & Dalagita - Fundraising Dinner & Live Showing of Miss Universe
The lights, beads, sparkle, magnificent costumes, flowing ball gowns, blinding smiles, contoured faces, sexy swimsuits. It’s Miss Universe time.

In just a couple weeks, on January 30 (January 29, 6:00 p.m. Winnipeg time), the annual beauty pageant will be airing its million-dollar show. Contestants from almost every country in the world will have trained for the competition for months – more likely, mentally preparing for it for years – in order to ensure they are poised, fit, well-mannered under pressure, and “beautiful” (conventionally-speaking) enough to be judged and assessed according to set criteria in order to vie for a title. Though the ultimate prize is to come out on top, individuals are also acknowledged if they get close, or if they have an awesome national costume, are selected by their peers for congeniality, or are voted as being photogenic.

This year’s Miss Universe competition is being hosted in the Philippines, and it is also the home country of the current titleholder, Pia Wurtzbach, who is from Cagayan de Oro in Mindanao. The show will be held at the Mall of Asia Arena in Pasay, and tickets are going for between $160 to $1000 USD a pop. There are even tour packages for returning overseas Filipino workers.

December 1, 2016

On Rizal, the artist

by Johsa Manzanilla  (Published in Pilipino Express December 1-15)

On November 19, 2016, the Knights of Rizal (Winnipeg Chapter) hosted an event “Celebrating Rizal the Artist.” ANAK’s Director Johsa Manzanilla was invited to provide the reflection. The following are her remarks.

To begin, it is a privilege and an honour to be invited today by the Knights of Rizal to reflect and expound on such a topic as “Rizal the Artist.” As Levy [Abad] said, I am a musician, actor and performance artist. I sing, play a number of instruments, write my own songs, and perform on stage and in some film. As a young Filipina, I have found it a challenge to balance following my artistic passions and pursuits with making meaningful, tangible contributions to society. I want to add to real world change that has a measureable, positive impact. Moreover, I am aware that a career in the arts does not necessarily provide lucrative financial compensation.

Jose Rizal didn’t start out wanting to make change, wanting to make a difference in the world. He didn’t wake up one morning deciding that he would make the impact that he eventually did. What Rizal did do was live and follow his passions and interests.