My first show of 2016

Ole! with Philippine Opera Company

“Ole!” A Concert Staged by the Philippine Opera Company | January 16, 2016

What a night it was! Flamenco, zarzuela, opera, and a bit of pop with the talented members of the Philippine Opera Company, and some very special guest artists from different parts of the globe.

I had the opportunity to hold workshops before the show, to give the singers a better sense of their Spanish/gypsy pieces. We focused on movement, and the Flamenco culture and way of life –  instead of dance technique as I usually do (since I was dealing with singers).

Flamenco workshops with the Philippine Opera Company

Flamenco workshops with the Philippine Opera Company

I absolutely adore getting to do workshops. I’m a naturally talkative person, but get me to talk Flamenco? You’re in for an earful. (You can tell by my excited hand gestures in the photos above)



The show itself was madness. Intense. Exhausting.  And all kinds of wonderful. Just as Flamenco should be.

I even got to perform an audience requested, unplanned number with THE Sal Malaki and tenor Miguel Angel Lobato from Madrid – who are both so ridiculously talented, that when they hit that Bb in “Granada”, I froze, put my hands over my heart, and mouthed “Oh my God”. I was so overwhelmed that I forgot to dance. Which is saying a lot, because I’d never stopped dancing in the middle of a number before.

Dancing for Sal Malaki and Miguel Angel Lobato in "Granada"

Dancing “Granada” with tenors Sal Malaki (right) and Miguel Angel Lobato (left)

And to dance with Sir Sal Malaki? Priceless. I met him after a Philippine Madrigal Singers concert years ago where he was guest artist. We were briefly introduced in a flurry of fans and pictures, so I was pleasantly surprised when I met him a year later and he said with a genuine smile, “Katsie! It’s so good to see you.” He remembered me. Year after year, he never forgot my name. I don’t know many artists who are as humble as he.

And this time, he said he came to watch me dance, with absolutely no plans of performing until he was begged (because who wouldn’t ask him to sing if he was around, right?) What an honour. And what kindness.

Tenor Sal Malaki

Tenor Sal Malaki

After the concert, I had so much fun laughing with both the friends I made through the show, and the friends I’ve had for years who came to support me, over sangria (not unlike the ones I “tasted” in Spain – It was Miguel who made it, after all), tapas, and lots and lots and lots of stories.

Thank you, Philippine Opera Company, for such a great night. Can’t wait for the next one!


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