6th Making Waves fest at Dundas Square
TORONTO–A fun-filled Saturday outdoors. Friendship and fellowship. Music, culture and the arts. Wares, goods and services. Filipino food at its best.
All these the annual Filipinos Making Waves Festival (FMWF) pursues to offer, as it stages its 6th edition at the Yonge-Dundas Square (YDS) in downtown Toronto on August 18, from 9 a.m. to 11 p.m.
Overall director Teresa Torralba said that besides the usual flair and non-stop flurry of festive fare “we had been doing in the last five years, this year’s FMWF will feature a lot of novel surprises.”
“For one, FMWF has partnered with ABS-CBN. The latter, a Philippine media conglomerate, is the presenting sponsor for the staging of its TFCkat Canada Finals. TFC stands for The Filipino Channel,” said Torralba.
She said ABS-CBN was generous enough to bring in world-class singer-entertainer Jed Madela for the TFCkat competitions — featuring finalists from across Canada — scheduled for early evening.
“Another beneficient partner is Sunlife of Canada. Its officials agreed to be the presenting sponsor of the festival’s Kids Zone, where children are sure to enjoy a playful summer,” she added.
Since its inception, FMWF — a program of Focus Philippines and Friends — has teamed up with the Federal, Ontario Provincial and Toronto City governments, the Philippine Consulate General in Toronto, the Toronto Police Service (TPS), and Action Honda, among many others.
Lately, Philippine Consul General in Toronto Junever Mahilum-West expressed the active participation of the consular staff in festival activities, Torralba said.
Toronto City Councillor Adam Vaughan and officials of various community groups have also committed support to the festival.
Youth Waves expansion
“What becomes another novelty in this year’s festival is the expansion of its Youth Waves segment,” she noted.
An attraction in FMWF’s last five outings with the community’s younger generation and their friends of diverse cultural origins, the Youth Waves (YW) Concert will be staged separately at the CNE’s Queen Elizabeth Theatre on August 19.
Among the invited YW performing artists from the U.S. are American Idol Season 9 Hollywood week finalist Tori Kelly (Los Angeles), Jenny Suk and Adrian Per (San Francisco), D’Pryde (Toronto), Mitchell Grey (New York), and Jeff Bernat (Reno).
D’Pryde, Grey and Bernat have performed in the FMWF. (For more YW particulars, surf www.filipinosmakingwaves.com and click on Youth Waves.)
Torralba said the YW artists might do a personal appearance-performance to cap the free main festival show at YDS on August 18.
The festival is tentatively set to start at 10 a.m. with the traditional Kawayan (Wave) parade along Yonge Street, Toronto’s busiest and the world’s longest thoroughfare.
Simultaneous with the parade, homegrown talents — FMWF regulars and new discoveries — take centre stage, opening up the festival’s show.
After the parade that ends at the YDS, performances onstage temporarily stops for a short program. Highlighting the program is the conferment of honours to at least three Filipinos Making Waves in the community.
Non-stop daylong show
Mon Torralba, Hotdog band original member and festival musical director, said the stream of non-stop daylong show of vocal power, musical playfulness, and terpsichorean grace would continue until late night.
Tentatively set to perform in the Cultural Dance Waves are BIBAK and Fiesta Filipina Dance Troupe; and in the Island Waves, Hanau I Ka Hula Na and Siony’s Dance Company.
Torralba named some of the singer-artists performing in various Waves segments as Chyrell Samson, Rodney Ronquillo, Don Torres, Bong Castillo, The Little Divas, Noah Alcantara, Isabella Santiago, Lia Luz, Mendoza Kids, Tommy Gesell, Sierra Rayman, John Alix, Ashley Suva, Eman Ogana, Terri Agpoon, and Edmund Arevalo.
He said the Band Waves would feature the rock music of Breeding Grounds, Crownless Kings, Thirdrite, Raize The Flag, Noizy Toyz, Uppercase, Lucy Diamond and Cast of Angels.
Those joining in the Youth Waves segment are Da Barkadaz, Ryan Flores, Kim Ibarrientos and Mark William, and Julian Garcia.
This would be a jampacked show of raw and honed musical talent encompassed and inspired by different musical genres and eras,” Torralba said.
He said he would also lead a live band composed of Nato Buzon, Mike Ombao, Jun Vidal and himself, adding that more information about the festival could be obtained from www.filipinosmakingwaves.com.
Teresa Torralba also invited the business community to avail themselves of the wide and extensive promotional and trading opportunities the Yonge-Dundas Square offers.
She said at least 25,000 people go through the square daily during the summer season.