Posts Tagged ‘Aldrin Gabriel’


UP Film Center Reunion with Ms. Virginia R. Moreno on Rizal’s Birthday

June 22, 2017

Last January 19, Jose Rizal’s birthday J.Moreno Foundation hosted through its President Virginia R. Moreno, Founder of the UP Film Center the reunion of the former and current staff of the UP Film Center. Supposed to have been a celebration of the 41 Aprils of Cinema Artists, it has been moved to coincide with Rizal’s birthday. Because of that, I have had the chance of screening my film MI ULTIMO ADIOS, the first-ever interpretation of the poem in Filipino Sign Language, and the 123rd version of the poem. Aldrin Gabriel, the Deaf actor attended. Cannes Palme d’Or winner Raymond Red was present.

Ultimo _ smaller file


Aldrin Gabriel [Deaf actor], UP Film Center Founder Ms. Virginia R. Moreno, and me, original staff of UPFC

After the screening, Aldrin thanked all those who watched our film. He said he was very happy to see hearing people watching a Deaf film. Rizal descendant Ms. Lisa Tinio-Bayot was as happy for having the film shown. She was unable to come because they also celebrated the birthday of her lolo Jose.

[Note: Preparing the exhibit with Clare Salaverria and Sheila Red was fun and quite reminiscent of what we used to do decades ago at the Film Center. All photos here were courtesy of Aldrin except for the poster]


On a Rainy Day to PRID

July 3, 2012

Today is literally not bright. It is grey all over the National Capital Region. LPA or low pressure area brought a lot a rains in Manila. Many schools and offices sent home students and employees especially in places affected by floods. Nevertheless, Aldrin Gabriel [Deaf Rizal /Ultimo Adios/A Filipinas] and I went this morning to the office of the Philippine Registry of Interpreters for the Deaf [PRID] located inside the compound of the Philippine School for the Deaf [PSD] in F.B. Harrison St. That was my first time to go there. When I shot Silent Odyssey, I didn’t go beyond the Main Building. I didn’t know anyone at the time I made my docu on Deaf Filipinos.

We were met by Jun Sevilla [interpreter for some poems in A mi Patria project and Febe’s husband]. He is an officer of PRID alumni group. He asked me to meet up with their president Nancy Sia to show A mi Patria and discuss the possibility of working together to spread Deaf  awareness and raise funds at the same time. The PRID Director joined us in the discussion. As the aim is towards promoting Deaf awareness in the society, well, maybe we could work together. I am not a choosy person.. I have in the past worked with groups, institutions, sometimes just individuals interested to show my films. My aim is anyhow for my film[s] to be seen by as many people as possible — hearing people especially in case of my Deaf films — for them to see and believe that yes! “Deaf can.” They have talents and potentials that only need exposure. It is my hope that the spotlight shines on them because there are quite a lot of gems in the group.


Showing Today A MI PATRIA – A Tribute to Dr. Jose Rizal

June 19, 2012

I’ll be presenting today the Sesquicentennial Editions of A MI PATRIA [Rizal’s Poetry in Film] translated into four languages: Filipino Sign Language, English, Filipino and Spanish. I would like to thank all those who supported, helped and participated in the realization of the project meant for Deaf Filipinos as well as the Blind to help them in appreciating Rizal’s work. However, responses of the hearing persons are equally positive re appreciation on the other hand, of the Filipino Sign Language used to interpret Rizal’s nationalistic poems.

A mi Patria Features:
Lynn Cappal, Catherine Joy Patriarca, Maria Elena Lozada, Graceren Pearl Santiago, Emmary Glor Batain, Janile Bustamante, Patrick Silver Padao, Joanna Canuto, Christina Betito, Melvin Jason Sibay, Relvic Joseph Taray

POEM READERS: English / Filipino


POEM TRANSLATORS: Spanish to Filipino / English

Production Staff:
Direction, Editing, Research, Concept & Treatment: Miranamedina
Camera: Dennis Balan (Deaf), Rem Vocalan
Choreography: Myra Medrana (Deaf)
Production Design: Rex Flores
Music: Diego JM, Roselle Pineda, Divine Leano
Sound: Bert De Santos
Make-up: Nelson Demetillo
Asst. Director / Production Manager:  Cathy Genovia
Production Assistants: Jojo Sia, Jr., Tom Salvador
Editing & Technical Assistant: Ritwic Bhunjun, Fiona Borres
Writer [Introduction]: Janus Victoria
Voice [Intro Narration]: George Castro
Interpreters: Febe and Jun Sevilla
FSL Consultants: Raphy Domingo (Deaf), Myra Medrana (Deaf)
Hearing Consultants: Vim Nadera, PhD., Marie Therese A.P. Bustos, PhD.

DLS-CSB to Interpret Rizal’s Poems in FSL

Below were some of the Deaf reactions after the screening of the film. [Source of the video and to see more photos during and after the screening click:


A Mi PATRIA – 5 Rizal’s Poetry in Film Interpreted in FSL Previews Tomorrow

May 17, 2012

The collection of Dr. Jose Rizal’s poetry [in film] done in four languages: Filipino Sign Language, Filipino, English and Spanish will finally be previewed tomorrow, May 18 at 1pm. The viewing scheduled at PEN Learning Room at DLS-CSB SDEAS is limited to performers, production staff and a few guests only. It is just my SOP to show it to the staff before any premiere screening is held to welcome suggestions to further improve the film, if and when necessary. Its public / premiere showing is targeted next month, June 19, the start of the 151st celebration of Rizal’s bday. Notably, A mi Patria was made exactly 100 years after the first film on Rizal in the Philippines was produced by the Americans, Yearsley and Gross. The film features Aldrin Gabriel, Mark Gaspar and Romalito Mallari as Rizal; Jorelle Faytaren as Maria Clara, and the Silent Steps.

The title “A MI PATRIA” / INANG-BAYAN / TO MY MOTHERLAND [FSL version] – which has taken a year to finish came from Noli Me Tangere, Dr. Rizal’s novel. It is the dedication title of Rizal in the said book. A MI is thematic; it centers on Rizal’s love of country and/or patriotism. All are inspiring poems; some sad, others hopeful. The poems interpreted in FSL are: A Filipinas, A la Juventud Filipina, Canto de Maria Clara, A las Flores de Heidelberg and Ultimo Adios. Rizal started writing poetry from his teenage years.

SDEAS will facilitate the special screening tomorrow.


100 Years After the First Film on Rizal Comes “A mi Patria”

April 25, 2012

The first film on Rizal was made in 1912. According to Vicente Salumbides’ Motion Pictures in the Philippines,  (c. 1952), a certain Mr. Yearsley who owned the Majestic Theater on Azcarrage St. near Bilibid, produced the silent movie, “Life of Dr. Jose Rizal / La Vida de Rizal.” Another American, E.M. Gross who operated the Zorilla Theater at Azcarraga [now Rizal Avenue] and Evangelista in Sta. Cruz, Manila also produced a film on Dr. Rizal’s life. Both films were simultaneously shown in Manila theaters.

100 years later, or this year [2012], A mi Patria – consisting of Rizal poetries in film were produced and soon to be released. In four languages, the Filipino Sign Language [FSL] version has a 10-min short biography of Rizal. It was finished last December but will be released this year. The spoken language versions: Spanish, English and Filipino were finished in February. Honorio Lopez acted in Rizal film in 1912; our versions have Aldrin Gabriel, Mark Steven Gaspar and Romalito Mallari as Rizal. All three of them are Deaf.

I have just readied the preview copy of A mi Patria / Inang-Bayan / To my Motherland. Since it may be too long to preview over two hours of the film in all four language versions – I will just project the FSL version [50 mins], and the spoken language versions totalling to nearly 27 mins as follows: Sa Filipinas [Read in Filipino, Interpreted in FSL, Captioned in English]; To the Philippine Youth [Read in English, Interpreted in FSL, Captioned in Spanish]; Awit ni Maria Clara [Read in Filipino, Interpreted in FSL, Captioned in English]; A las Flores de Heidelberg [Read in Spanish, Interpreted in FSL, Captioned in English] and Mi Ultimo Adios [Read in Filipino, Interpreted in FSL, Captioned in Spanish]. All poems were written by Dr. Jose Rizal. The preview is temporary scheduled on May 11 and will be limited to all those involved in the project: production staff members, performers and a few stakeholders. Public viewing will be held on June 19, 2012 in celebration of Dr. Jose Rizal’s 151th birthday.


Asian Spectacles-Featuring the Best of Asian Deaf Films

January 11, 2012

Behind the Scene_Rehearsal_ULTIMO ADIOS with Aldrin Gabriel

Just read this morning the schedule of the Second HongKong International Deaf Film Festival to be held at HongKong Arts Center from February 24-26, 2012. Our entry, MI ULTIMO ADIOS [in Filipino Sign Language]  is sked under Programme I [See below] of the festival.

節目一:亞洲專題 /Programme 1: Asian SpectaclesFeaturing the Best of Asian Deaf Films

日期及時間 /Date & Time: 24/02   8pm
彩色 /Col /DVD /103mins
As the Tribute Film of the 20th International Day of Disabled Persons in China, Love Before Sunrise features the young Chinese Deaf actor Sung Xiubo in a love tragedy.  Mi Último Adiós (in English “My Last Farewell”) is the Signing version of the farewell poem written by Filipino national hero Dr. Jose P. Rizal before his sacrifice to the brutal colonial rule.  

愛在日出前 /Love Before Sunrise
中國 /China /2010 /57’02”
普通話對白,中國手語,中文、英文字幕 /In Mandarin & Chinese Sign Language with English & Chinese Subtitles
導演:熊皓 /Director: Xiong Hao

永訣辭 /Mi Último Adiós
菲律賓 /Philippines /2011 /14’31”
菲律賓手語,中文、英文字幕 /Fillipino Sign Language with English & Chinese Subtitles
導演 /Director: Mirana Medina

Music and the Sea, The $10,000 that Did Not Exist and Minority within the Minorities are winners of the Film Competition of the First Hong Kong International Deaf Film Festival.  Feeling the vibration of the sound from loudspeakers, a Deaf girl imagines dancing with her cyber-dating boyfriend in Music of the Sea. Two devils want to destroy the trust between a hard-of-hearing couple in The $10,000 that Did Not ExistMinority within the Minorities is a delicate twist between a Deaf girl and a Hearing girl.  In Whispering Hands, the Deaf waitress Glory with supernatural power wants to help a spirit called Carrie.  In Pelita Hati, Deaf guy Kelana visits a village and teaches a Deaf Aboriginal villager Damak the Sign language.

(For the complete list of films, click HKIDFF Schedule)


What Keeps Me Going

January 3, 2012

Positive responses to the work I have done encourages me to continue my advocacy for the marginalized individuals. This morning, I received this note from the Curator of the Rizal Shrine, Zarah Escueta. ULTIMO ADIOS interpreted by Aldrin Gabriel [Deaf] was officially launched at the Rizal Shrine on December 29, and shown whole day in Fort Santiago on December 30.

The curator noted:

a photo of the couple who watched the Ultimo Adios in FSL last
December 30 at the AVR of Fort Santiago and the note they wrote:

We were deeply impressed by the presentation of the film of “Huling
Paalam”.  Very Touching and full of memories of the greatness of the
last moments of this national hero.  Congratulations to the Commission
and the most of “presentors” of the film.

B.M. Villarias, P.S.

They were from US on a vacation for the the holiday.  They were teary
eyed while talking to me about the film, so touched.


I forwarded the above to Atty. Ramoncita Reyes, a Rizal descendant who was one of our speakers during the film’s launching last December 29, 2011 at the Rizal Shrine. She says:

Congrats! I think when things are done from the heart, it will shine through and touch people.



3 in 1 Ultimo Adios? The Multilingual Version

December 4, 2011

Just musing about the possibility of presenting on December 29 at the Rizal Shrine, not only one but three versions of Ultimo Adios  — for the Deaf, the Blind and all hearing individuals, especially students of Spanish and Rizal Course, including scholars studying Rizal’s works, and the ordinary laymen. One of my primary aims in making this project is to expose the hearing persons to the beauty of Filipino Sign Language [FSL]; and to the Dept. of Education, the existence of the natural sign language of Deaf Filipinos for them to consider the use of FSL in primary schools to benefit Deaf children. The versions are as follows: FSL Version interpreted by Aldrin Gabriel with English subtitles, FSL Version interpreted by the Silent Steps and Ultimo Adios read in Spanish language by Chair Wystan de la Peña of U.P. Department of European Languages with Filipino subtitles, and FSL version interpreted by Aldrin Gabriel, read by Vim Nadera in Filipino with English subtitles. Of the three, only the Spanish version remains to be edited…while the Filipino version is yet to be subtitled. [I must confide that I am starting to get confused with the multilingual combinations that I myself conceived. Ha!Ha!] By the way, the Silent Steps is a playgroup consisting of Deaf students from DLS-CSB Sch. of Deaf Education and Applied Studies where I studied Filipino Sign Language under the FSL Learning Program [FSLLP].


Sa Mga Bulaklak ng Heidelberg_Filipino Version

November 26, 2011

Am sked to work on the Filipino-Filipino Sign Language [FSL] version [composite] of “Sa Mga Bulaklak ng Heidelberg” originally written by Dr. Jose Rizal. It was read by Marot Flores of U.P. KAL, and interpreted in FSL by Romalito Mallari [Deaf]. I have edited Marot’s part a month ago but today I’ll be combining it with FSL version. Again, I am expecting the problem of timing to be there. There are parts where they can “sync” or timing will be the same; but there are parts where I need to hold one or the other because either one is shorter, or longer. I have finished the composite work on the Filipino-FSL version of “Huling Paalam” translated from Spanish into Filipino by Andres Bonifacio, read by Vim Nadera and interpreted by Aldrin Gabriel. [For the copy of Huling Paalam, here’s the link: huling-pahimakas_binasa-ni-vim-nadera]