IN THE days before television and video games, children played outdoors — patintero, tagu-taguan (hide and seek), and tumbang preso. Those who preferred to stay indoors, could spend time with a game of jackstones, sungka, and joining clapping games with siblings or neighbors.
It was with the notion of reintroducing traditional songs and Filipino games to the youth that lead to Ayala Malls’ launch of Awit at Laro, a project celebrating music and culture, on Oct. 25 at The Gallery in Greenbelt 5.
The project, led by singer Gary Valenciano and interior designer Bambi Mañosa, aims to raise funds for the United Nations Children’s Fund (UNICEF), the Tukod Foundation, an organization that supports the advancement of Filipino art and design; and the Shining Light Foundation, Inc., a non-stock, nonprofit corporation that provides resources pastors, church workers, and the underprivileged.
In 2015, interior designer Bambi Mañosa mounted LARO, an art exhibit for the Creative Kids Studio. According to Ms. Mañosa’s statement on the official Awit at Laro website, “The kids were taught how to play patintero, piko, jolens, and tumbang preso, so they could understand the art and designs they had to create. Not only were they able to create beautiful pieces, but they actually enjoyed playing the games of their parents’ youth.”
It was the suggestion of Ms. Mañosa’s father, newly awarded National Artist for Architecture Francisco Mañosa, to add music to the art exhibit turned fund-raising campaign.
This year, various artists, including UNICEF national ambassador Gary Valenciano, recorded an album with 20 tracks — 10 traditional Filipino songs and 10 songs about children’s games.
To get a free download of the album, one must first get a copy of the accompanying songbook (P899) which has a QR code which leads to the redemption of the digital song pack.
The songbooks will be available at a series of Awit at Laro concerts which will tour 21 Ayala malls throughout the country from Nov. 3 to Dec. 22.
Directed by Paolo Valenciano, the shows will feature his father Gary Valenciano, Steps Dance Studio, and artists who contributed to the album, including Kiana Valenciano, Jona, Gab V, Yeng Constantino, and Joey Ayala.
“The concerts in the malls, that’s anything goes. It will be the singing of the songs of Awit at Laro. [I think] there will be games that will be played also to make people experience it whether they know it or not,” Gary Valenciano told members of the press shortly after the launch.
For more information on the album, songbook, and mall tour, visit — Michelle Anne P. Soliman