By Marivir R. Montebon
New York City – It was her day-off as the goddess Erzulie from Broadway show Once on this Island, thus Lea Salonga joyously launched her CD album Bahaghari (Rainbow) in a private-nonetheless-sparkling holiday party on Thursday, December 14, at the Kalayaan Hall of the Philippine Consulate here. Wearing a white lace collared Kate Spade black dress, she preempted an excited audience that she will sing only two songs of the collection of 15 traditional folk songs of Bahaghari (Rainbow). The evening party was hosted by Vice Consul Khrys Corpuz and was attended by about a hundred guests that included Amb. Virgil Reyes, Amb. Mario de Leon Jr., Ms. Loida Nicolas Lewis, UN Permanent Rep. Amb. Teodoro Locsin Jr., and Fr. Patrick Longalong.
Bahaghari is produced by GLP Music, a precious treasure for Filipinos, especially those in the diaspora, for it re-lives childhood songs and helps ensure that these beautiful songs will be remembered by the younger generation. Lea sang in Ilonggo, Bicolano, Tagalog, Cebuano, Visayan, Kapampangan, and Ilocano in this album, which could be purchased from her website www.leasalonga.com.
Ryan Cayabyab arranged the music for Lea, along with younger arrangers to include her brother Gerard. GLP Music commits itself to introduce children to world languages and culture through music. Producers Angela Niswander and Rex Jackson graced the affair and presented Lea with an appreciation token.
Asked if she sang ‘Matud Nila’, a Cebuano love song, she answered in the affirmative and gleefully said that her Visayan colleague at Once on this Island, scenic and costume designer Clint Ramos, totally got crazy. (With photos by Ms. Juliet Payabyab)