A FLAGSHIP project of the National Commission of Culture and the Arts, the Taboan Writers Festival is an annual gathering of writers from all over the country. The festival sets up shop in a different region every year where writers, readers, scholars, researchers and lovers of Philippine literature trade diverse ideas about culture, history and the literary arts. It is an exciting venue for writers to interact with one another and with their audience. The festival usually includes a conference, a book fair, the Taboan Awards, and performances by local artists’ groups, all of which are open to the public. Local and national writers’ organizations, along with universities and schools, particularly their students, faculty members, and researchers, will share in this enrichment of Philippine literature.
This year, the 10th Taboan Writers Festival will happen at the 10th largest island of the Philippines: Bohol. The event is supported by the University of San Carlos Cebuano Studies Center, the local government of Bohol, the Ramon Aboitiz Foundation Inc., and Smart Communications.
The festival will be on Oct. 19 and 20 at the Bohol Cultural Center in Tagbilaran City.
Dr. Hope Sabanpan-Yu, chair of the National Committee on Literary Arts and this year’s Taboan Festival director, said that the Taboan 2018’s theme is “Sandúgò: Philippine Literature in the Digital Age.” It resonates with Bohol’s cultural identity as well as highlights the writers’ commitment to their art produced during a time when it is often mediated by technology.
The keynote speaker will be Dr. Resil B. Mojares, while the plenary speaker will be Dr. Marjorie Evasco, who is also one of this year’s Taboan awardees. The other Boholano awardees are Ulysses Aparece, Edgar Godin and, posthumously, Anthony Incon and Clovis Nazareno.
Hundreds of national and local writers as well as teachers and students of literature are expected to attend the festival activities. Panel discussions in parallel sessions on the following topics will be conducted: diasporic writers, environment/writing catastrophe, emerging experimental writing, fake news, imagi/NATION and threats to nationhood. There will also be panel discussions on the genres of children’s literature, creative nonfiction, graphic literature, performance poetry, speculative fiction and young adult literature.
Delegates in Taboan Festivals consist of the country’s most prolific, as well as promising writers and mixed media artists. Delegates from the National Capital Region are Renante G. Ciar, Edrick S. Carrasco,Will P. Ortiz, Anna Felicia C. Sanchez, Joselito D. Delos Reyes and Dawn Marie Nicole L. Marfil. From Luzon are the following delegates: Monica S. Macansantos, Melvin C. Magsanoc, Roland Erwin P. Rabang, Crispina S. Dela Cruz, Daisy C. Ricardo, Eduardo J. Piano, Roilingel P. Calilung, Honesto M. Pesimo, Jr. and Elbert O. Baeta. Delegates from the Visayas are Early Sol A. Gadong, Hezron G. Pios, Joanalyn P. Gabales, Charles Dominic Sanchez, Alsteine Joi Diapana, Rosalina R. Sarabosing, Rene Ponte, Noel Tuazon, Reynaldo Monreal, Fred Jordan Carnice, Ramon Boloron, Haidee Emmie K. Palapar, Firie Jill T. Ramos and Jenelyn V. Garcia. Mindanao is represented by Jade Mark B. Capiñanes, Errol A. Merquita, Mario L. Cuezon, Alton Melvar M. Dapanas, Floraime O. Pantaleta and Jason R. Kanindot.