Benefit Event: Filipino American Community Celebration


A celebratory evening with live music, pica pica (hor d’oeuvres) reception and tours of Philippine Gold: Treasures of Forgotten Kingdoms. The centerpiece of the evening will be a special performance of Langhapin, Lasapin, Namnamin … Pag-Ibig (Breathe, Taste, Savor … Love) at 7:00 pm. This special presentation explores love in its many aspects through Philippine songs of various genres performed by outstanding Filipino and American classical singers and musicians, offering a glimpse of Philippines musical identity and heritage.

In conjunction with the exhibition Philippine Gold: Treasures of Forgotten Kingdoms, on view September 11, 2015 through January 3, 2016.

Artist Bios:

A native of the Philippines, Joy Abalon Tamayo is currently based in New York City. Equally versatile in concert and chamber works, Ms. Tamayo has been a soloist for Orff’s Carmina Burana, Mozart’s Coronation Mass, Beethoven’s Ode to Joy, Handel’s Messiah, and Vivaldi’s Gloria. Among the roles she has played are the Queen of the Night in Mozart’s The Magic Flute, Goldentrill in Mozart’s The Impresario, Lucy in Menotti’s The Telephone, Amore in Monteverdi’s L’Incoronazione di Poppea, Sisa in Noli Me Tangere, and Suor Genovieffa in Puccini’s Suor Angelica. Recent performances include The Calf in Kento Iwasaki’s The Beloved Prey at the Flushing Town Hall in Queens, New York and as Barbarina in Mozart’s Le Nozze di Figaro with the dell’Arte Opera Ensemble at the Baruch Performing Arts Center. Ms. Tamayo has a master’s degree in performance from the Crane School of Music and a bachelor’s degree in music from the University of the Philippines, College of Music.


Lyric tenor Jeremy Blossey is an accomplished singer of opera, concert/oratorio and musical theater on stages all over the United States, Europe and the Pacific. An interpreter of over 40 roles, Jeremy has appeared in leading roles with Opera Hamilton, Hawaii Opera Theater, Opera de Quebec, Opera Cleveland, Shreveport Opera, Le Poisson Rouge, New Jersey State Opera, IVAI in Tel Aviv, Natchez Opera and Washington Summer Opera Theater among numerous others. He has also appeared as a soloist with the Honolulu Symphony, Annapolis Symphony, the United States Naval Academy, the Great Auditorium at Ocean Grove, the Theater Chamber Players at the Kennedy Center in Washington D.C. and onstage with the 6-time Grammy award winning band The Chieftains at McCarter Theater in Princeton, NJ. Upcoming engagements this season include appearances with Nickel City Opera and gala concerts with the Orquestra Santa Cecilia at the Auditorio Nacional in Madrid, Spain.


Baritone John-Andrew Fernandez is an engaging young singer who has been heard on opera and concert stages across North America and Europe. Recent performances include the role of Padre Damaso in Noli Me Tangere at the Kennedy Center, Washington, D.C.; Silvio in I Pagliacci for Knoxville Opera; an aria excerpt from Die tote Stadt performed with the Philadelphia Orchestra; Schaunard in La Bohème for Winter Opera St. Louis; Fiorello in Il Barbiere di Siviglia for Bel Canto at Caramoor; Giuseppe in The Gondoliers with Light Opera of New Jersey; Schicchi in Gianni Schicchi for the Martina Arroyo Foundation; and Belcore in The Elixir of Love for Swarthmore Opera. He is frequently featured as the baritone soloist in Brahms’ Requiem, Orff’s Carmina Burana, Fauré’s Requiem and Händel’s Messiah. Fernandez has enjoyed six operatic world premieres, including creating the roles of Mercuzio and Prospero in Romeo e Giulietta and La Tempesta at the Teatro Avvalloranti, Italy.

ENRICO LAGASCA, bass-baritone

“produced beautiful sounds”- The New York Times; “powerful, rich bass” – The East Hampton Star

A native of the Philippines, bass-baritone Enrico Lagasca is a soloist and chorister in oratorio, opera, chamber music, and recitals with a repertoire spanning from Early Music to 21st Century Music. Enrico regularly sings with the Choir of St. Ignatius Loyola and the Bach Choir of the Bach Vespers at Holy Trinity Lutheran Church. He also frequently appears with The Bard Festival Chorus, New York Choral Artists, Musica Sacra, Cathedral Choir of St. John the Divine, the Collegiate Chorale, the New York Virtuoso Singers, and the Oratorio Society of New York. Enrico is an avid performer of new music and has given world premiere performances of works by Gerald Cohen’s opera Steal a Pencil for me, Sharon Farber’s Ashkina, Joel Mandelbaum’s Dybbuk, Joseph Rubinstein’s Seeking You, Lowell Lieberman’s Night Dreams, Denise Hoffman’s Sleep-running, Stanislav Fridman’s Prorok, and Vladislav Bohuinia’s Rise. In addition to his singing, Enrico is an advocate of promoting Filipino classical music in New York. He is a co-founder of the Philippine-American Choral Project and conducts the San Lorenzo Ruiz Choir.


Filipina coloratura, Antoni Mendezona has been recognized internationally as a soprano with “dazzling high notes” and a “showstopper.” A consummate actress, her experience has led her to step in twice at the last minute for two important American opera debuts; one in the European debut as Sophie in Tobias Picker’s Emmeline and the other as Veronique in the NYC premier of Pasatieri’s The Hotel Casablanca which garnered a New York Times review saying she “stole scenes with her pealing voice and bubbly personality.” Her most recent operatic roles are Sisa (Manila) and Maria Clara (NYC debut), Blondchen, Dorinda, Zerlina, Despina, Le Rossignol, Elisa, Flora, Frasquita, La Princessa, Sandman and Dew Fairy.


Rogelio B. Peñaverde Jr. has performed various lead tenor roles, especially from the Mozart and bel canto opera repertoire. He is noted by the New York Times for his “sweet sound” and praised by Opera Magazine as an “incisive tenor.” A singer with “engaging presence” and a “strong, dependable vocal equipment which flawlessly soars and sustains high notes long and firmly,” he is equally at home singing musical theater and contemporary pop music. Peñaverde has performed with the New York City Opera, Caramoor International Music Festival, Bronx Opera Company, Taconic Opera, Liederkranz Opera Theater, Bel Cantanti Opera, DiCapo Opera, Tuscia Opera Festival of Italy, and the Cultural Center of the Philippines. He has a Master of Music Degree, Major in Voice, from the Manhattan School of Music, where he was a Merit Scholar. He also holds a Bachelor of Music Degree, Major in Voice and Minor in Piano, from the University of Santo Tomas Conservatory of Music, where he was a Merit Scholar of the UST Conservatory of Music Alumni Association.


Praised by the Philippine Star for her sustained fortissimos that are “most impressive, arresting attention repeatedly” and by the Washington Post for having sung “beautifully as Tiya Isabel” in Felipe De Leon’s opera Noli me Tangere, soprano Katrina Saporsantos has earned recognition for her performances of roles on the operatic and concert stages as well as music festivals in the Philippines, Japan and the United States. She has been featured soloist of the Philippine Philharmonic Orchestra, the Bamboo Organ Festival Orchestra, Manhattan Philharmonia and the Manhattan Symphony Orchestra and Chorus, among others. Her performance highlights include Sirota’s Holy Women (world premiere), Mahler’s Symphony No. 2 and Symphony No. 8 (Philippine premiere), Wagner’s Wesendonck Lieder, Fauré’s Requiem, Orff’s Carmina Burana, Bach’s and Händel’s St. John Passion, Estrada’s Black Psalm (world premiere) and Parangal. She is a winner of the Eisenberg-Fried Competition at the Manhattan School of Music, the National Music Competition for Young Artists, and most recently, the Gerda Lissner International Vocal Competition in the Wagnerian Division. She is a Bachelor of Music graduate of the University of the Philippines College of Music and a Master of Music and Professional Studies graduate of the Manhattan School of Music.

Event Details

12 September 2015
725 Park Avenue, New York, NY

$100 ($50 tax deductible)

Source: Asia Society


Please enter your comment!
Please enter your name here