Legends of the men

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Monday, December 9, 2013

INDEED, being an outstanding Club at 45 years and still counting is a milestone worth remembering and

celebrating. And so the Zonta Club of Cebu 1 declared Nov. 1-30 as Zonta Month in the province of Cebu, through Special Resolution 1135-2013.

The culminating activity was a dinner-musicale for a cause held on Nov. 25, at the ballroom of Radisson Blu Hotel. It was conceptualized and directed by Zonta past president Dr. Mila C. Espina. Titled “Legends of Men,” it featured men who have made their mark in history.

Making a special trip to Cebu to attend the anniversary was Zonta District 17 governor Hong Kong-based Winnie Teoh and her party. They were welcomed by local Zontians Area 3 director Anita Sanchez and Zonta 1 president Lucille Colina.

Pre-production musical numbers were provided by special guest singers John Clifford Gawchua, Ben Yapjoco who warbled I’’ve Got a Crush on You and Sonny Espina who rendered with aplomb, C’est Magnifique.

Hugging the spotlight as “Woman of Substance” was Maria Cristina “Marian” C. Aboitiz, who received an award from the Zontians for her outstanding leadership in the community specifically in culture, education, entrepreneurship and environmental conservation, as well as her values of humility, fortitude and integrity. Congratulations, Marian!

It was now the turn of former honorary consul to Spain in Cebu Jaime Picornell to give a brief biography of the featured composer of the musicale, Cole Porter, whose immortal classics live forever!


Now let the Legends march in! The first Man Adam, played by John Domingo, was quite a presence, as he sang Begin the Beguine, with Eve played by Monica Orellano.

We have Jupiter ably portrayed Dr. Warfe Engracia, who impressed the audience with his perfect baritone voice as he rendered In the Still of the Night. Also in the scene were Amparito Lhuillier as Venus, Aida Uy as Diana, and Yvette Vass as Athena.

Who can forget England’s Henry VIII as the polygamous leader, convincingly portrayed by Joe Ng, who also sang Njght and Day? We noted the presence of Anne Boleyn (Tess Chan), Queen Elizabeth I (Beverly Dayanan) and Princess Diana (Carol Ballesteros).

We almost did not recognize Loy Jurado who played Napoleon Bonaparte, and the song, our fave, I Love Paris is something to always cherish.

During the “Mythology to Ancient History” portion, we cheered for RTC Judge Bienvenido Saniel, who rendered So in Love and You Do Something to Me. And we admired the “faces that launched a thousand ships” so to say, with Myrna Tan (Helen of Troy), Janice Minor (Cleopatra) and Isabel Garcia (Salome).

Dashing Greg Huettel was a “carbon copy” of the late US president John F. Kennedy and rendered a most fitting song, My Heart Belongs to Daddy. What would these ladies have to say? Whatever it is, Jackie Kennedy (Mariter Klepp), Agnes Huettel (Angie Dickinson) and Selina Richmond (Marilyn Monroe) looked spendid.

Ole Blue Eyes was back! Frank Sinatra was fleshed out by Francis Monera who also delivered an unforgettable I’ve Got You Under My Skin. Visible were Sean Delfin as the Paparazzi and attractive June Alegrado as Ava Gardner.

Who can forget the Imeldific Era with Nelia Neri as Imelda herself? Can Ferdinand Marcos (Fr. Emmanuel Bolilia) be far behind? To complete the trilogy, welcome—George Hamilton (Fr. Vincent Ramon Jr.) and Dovie Beams (Sheila Colmenares).

Our hero for all seasons, Ninoy Aquino (Jong Fernandez), strutted in to the tune of True Love, as he was followed by ever-loving wife Cory (Matt Baguia) an “extemporaneous” daughter, Kris (Janine Espinosa), who was high-pitching just another endorsement.

Now it’s time to focus on our local sportsmen (boxers): Manny Pacquiao (Jessielito Moncada) and Nonito Donaire (Sam Costanilla). Sam just couldn’t resist dishing out an Aling Dionisia joke that sent us all roaring with laughter! Who should walk in now but socialite, Paris Hilton (Alice Woolbright)! The now famous Para Sa ‘Yo and I Get a Kick Out of You songs were also featured.

Ah, but the Most Powerful Almighty Legend of all is Jesus Christ “Superstar” (Edwin Castañeda), and included in this tableaux are: Mary Magdalene (Jazziejoy Mantilla), Judas (Charles Egama) and our beloved Mama Mary (Mary Eloise Lepiten). Very appropriately, the song had to be I Don’t Know How to Love Him.

What a show. It had everything: humor, pathos, music and showmanship!

Published in the Sun.Star Cebu newspaper on December 10, 2013.


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