By Michael Angelo S. Murillo
Senior Reporter

FILIPINO athletes seeing action later this year in the 30th Southeast Asian Games have received a boost from acclaimed performing artists of the land.

Tony awardee Lea Salonga, National Artist for Music Ryan Cayabyab and Palanca-award winning writer and director Floy Quintos have teamed up to create the theme song for the SEA Games which the country is hosting from Nov. 30 to Dec. 11.

Entitled “We Win As One,” the lyrics were of Mr. Quintos and music was by Mr. Cayabyab.

Ms. Salonga lends the voice and the face in the music video that comes with it.

The theme song was unveiled on Tuesday at The Grand Bar and Lounge of Resorts World Manila, with the artists and SEA Games organizers expressing excitement over the project team-up and support for the athletes.

“The inspiration for the song is in the SEA Games tag itself, ‘We Win As One.’ It’s a big inspiration for me because it talks about not only about our relationship as a community and country but also our relationship with our neighbors. Yes we compete but we win as one,” said Mr. Cayabyab of the SEA Games song.

The Philippine Southeast Asian Games Organizing Committee (PHISGOC) shared the when the theme song project was being conceptualized it had no artists in mind but those involved in “We Win As One,” which was also arranged by noted music director and producer Jimmy Antiporda.

“I was excited and I was honored because they asked me [to be part of this],” shared Mr. Cayabyab.

For Ms. Salonga, to represent the country in such a way is both exciting and fun even as she said that she hopes the athletes get inspired from it.

“When I represent the country I make it a point to always put my best foot forward. And this is one of those times and I’m mindful that I bring out only the best. It’s amazing to sing for this kind of arena and I hope the athletes get inspired by it,” Ms. Salonga said.

The 2019 SEA Games is touted to be the biggest to be staged in the Philippines, involving 11,000 athletes and officials from the 11 member nations, 9,000 volunteers, 530 events and 56 sports.

Forty-four venues have been short-listed for the event scattered in different parts of the country, including the world-class facilities at New Clark City in Tarlac.

The last time the country hosted the SEA Games was in 2005.