Animusika 8: A warm-glow musicale
An epic ensemble brought by a gifted collaborative of young musical talents, DLSU-D Symphonic Band’s Animusika 8: Melodies of the Wind on February 17 during the Lasallian Festival showcased a string of eye-opening performances headed toward its advocacy, in line with the Lasallian spirit—to go green.
Animusika’s first show was held in 2009 and adopted its trademark title from Animo music—music made for Lasallians. Since then, DLSU-D Symphonic Band has pursued their mission to offer Lasallians a taste of their music despite the declining amount of young fans of classical music. According to DLSU-D Symphonic Band President Carlo Rementilla, “‘Di ba, dati ‘yung mga matatanda mahilig sa ganito (classical music), pero this time, ‘pag sinabi mo [sa mga students] na ganoon, madalas aantukin sila, mabo-bored … so kailangan lagi siyang may twist para mas maging engaging siya.”
The twist mentioned for this year’s concert was the alignment of their concert to the theme of environmental preservation—a green mindset for a green university. They proved their advocacy through actions rather than slogans by saving up money and wasted resources with the idea of producing recycled tickets.
With the help of Environmental Resource Management Center (ERMAC), they produced 1,100 100 percent recycled tickets out of old folders, wood posters, and scratch paper. Even with their promotional material, they opted to use videos rather than print materials to save up on cost and environmental damage.
Pursuing their advocacy with more actions than words, DLSU-D Symphonic Band came up with the idea that “for every ticket bought is a tree planted.” With every ticket came a seedling that could either be brought home and planted in your yard or instead planted by the organization themselves during their tree-planting activity. In partnership with Gawad Kalinga (GK), “magbi-build kami ng school tapos papakain pa [ng GK community] pero magti-tree planting din kami at the same time.”
When the big night finally arrived, The Ugnayang La Salle was slowly and steadily filled with Lasallian students, friends, families, alumnus, and invited students from Dasmariñas North National High School. The atmosphere was buzzing with anticipation as the crowd was prepared to be serenaded and bedazzled by the performances.
Championing Animusika 8’s green advocacy, Br. Augustine Boquer FSC stated in his opening video that, “[you are] expected to be a catalyst of reformation as a Filipino and you must stand up for the values as a Lasallian spirit.” He then emphasized that “change is always important … change must be developed,” this tells us that initiative must be taken into action to start a change—particularly with caring for our Earth.
The underlying twist of presenting their message through a series of video clips was like reading a storybook, flipping through the pages as they enchant you with the backstory of the earth’s condition back then, how Man became a culprit of destruction, and how Man themselves can revive it, inducing guilt, shame, fear—and most of all, hope.
Carried out by 38 official band members in addition to alumni, the DLSU-D Symphonic Band’s set list were gratifyingly resonant in every note as the crowd was moved to sing along. Some performances include the song Power of Love, highlighting the saxophone played by Rementilla and What a Wonderful World which set hearts ablaze with its classic rendition of giving the audience a look back on the beauty of our world.
Other special performances of the night included Teatro Lasalliana’s excerpt from their musical play “We Tell The Story,” La Salle Filipiniana Dance Company’s ethnic ensemble, Lasallian Pointes ‘n Flexes Dance Company’s riveting intermission number, and a special performance from Citizens’ Brigade Band of Dasmariñas with its impressive simultaneous dance and drum roll number.
A fitting end to the night’s inspiring aura, Symphonic Band’s final performance was an electrifying rendition of Heal the World by Michael Jackson, echoing out the final words of the concert’s set list—to make our world a better place.
Driven by intention
In line with DLSU-D’s mission for environmental awareness, DLSU-D Symphonic Band opened audience’s eyes to the reality of human negligence to the environment and open ears. As philosopher George Santayana once said, “the Earth has music for those who listen.”
Rementilla shares how his passion of environmental sustainability grew in the University. With the school’s intensive preaching to be environmentally friendly, many students have adopted the advocacy as their own, yet there are other students who don’t necessarily welcome the green-minded spirit. He shares that,“Minsan nga naglalakad ako, [inisip ko] ito ba talaga ‘yung greenest university in the Philippines? Parang kulang pa.”
Just as DLSU-D Symphonic Band took the risk of pushing through their advocacy despite of the lack of resources and time, Animusika strives to revive our advocacy for the environment and expose us to a rare orchestra repertoire in order to promote cultural and musical awareness.
Recognized as student leaders in our campus, the band decided to have their tree planting activity after the event on February 20th and donate the remaining proceeds of ticket sales to the One La Salle Scholarship Fund and Performing Arts Group Scholars.
A close to this event starts another highly anticipated addition to Symphonic Band’s musicale. Through the influential impact of music on everyone, Animusika 8 hopes to bring out the compassion of students to take the challenge of change and the courage of saving the environment.