ALPAS (from left to right): Kitchie Nadal, Aia de Leon, Barbie Almalbis, Johnoy Danao, Ebe Dancel, and Bullet Dumas

THE ONGOING coronavirus disease 2019 (COVID-19) pandemic and quarantines have kept musicians cooped up in their homes, unable to perform for a live audience. While they have kept busy learning how to record, produce, and continue writing new music at home, the online community platform Kumu has made it possible for alternative/pop-rock/folk singers Ebe Dancel, Johnoy Danao, Bullet Dumas, Barbie Almalbis, Aia de Leon, and Kitchie Nadal to get together for a virtual concert.

To keep the live music scene alive while public life is on lockdown, GNN Entertainment and Kumu are presenting a digital concert called ALPAS (which means “breaking free”) on June 5, 6 p.m. (Philippine time).

“Music feels more essential than usual in the time of pandemic. It’s quite challenging to find a sustainable workaround to help artists connect with their fans and implement welcoming developments in the virtual concert space. ALPAS is our way to support the live music scene as we transition into the new normal,” Kumu Live Events Manager Lorraine Alelis said in a statement.

ALPAS marks the first time that the six artists will be co-headlining a show in a “familiar music venue” after having performed as solo acts or members of a band. The artists will be performing song of their biggest hits such as “Burnout,” “Sundo,” “Tugtog,” “Huwag na Huwag Mong Sasabihin,” “Tabing Ilog,” and “Cuida” in a stripped-down format. The artists will also collaborate in a special medley arranged by musical director Ronaldo Tomas.

The artists have worked together before, though not at the same time. Ms. Almalbis, Ms. De Leon, and Ms. Nadal staged sold-out, concerts together at the Music Museum in 2016 and 2017, and held a benefit online show in 2020 to raise funds for the employees of indie music venues in Metro Manila. Meanwhile, Mr. Dancel, Mr. Danao, and Mr. Dumas performed as 3D, headlining three sold-out concerts in 2015, 2016, and 2018. 

ALPAS will be shot at the outdoor area of Conspiracy Garden Café in Quezon City, and in Madrid, Spain where Ms. Nadal is currently based.

Nami-miss namin yung crowd (We miss the crowd)… Iba yung interaction with actual people sa harap mo habang tumutugtog ka. May batuhan ng emotion dun eh (It’s a different interaction with actual people in front of you. There is more emotion there) …We cope kasi kailangan naming i-share yung music. Mahirap na ikaw lang ang nakakarinig sa sarili mo. (We cope because we need to share our music. It is difficult to be heard only by yourself),” Johnoy Danao said during an online press launch on May 25 held via Zoom. 

According to the artists, the audience can expect great music coupled with nostalgia, minimal dancing, and “swaying.”

“This is as close as you can get to a live gig and we really felt it. I’m sure it will translate with you too,” Aya de Leon said.

Tickets for ALPAS are now available via Kumu at P499 for general admission. For details, visit — Michelle Anne P. Soliman