Akbayan presents… “Luzonia”


San Jose, CA, April 5, 2011 – The Akbayan Pilipino-American Organization of San Jose State University has announced the dates, times, and charity beneficiary for its 23rd Annual Pilipino Cultural Night.

This year, part of the proceeds gained from ticket sales will go to ProjectPEARLS, a non-profit organization dedicated to helping children and others in need in the Philippines.

According to the organization’s PCN Information Packet, the underlying theme for the show will be recognition. As a tribute to oppressed Filipinos such as the veterans who fought alongside American soldiers during World War II only to have their benefits taken away as well as the farmworkers such as Phillip Vera Cruz and Larry Itliong that struggle to receive acknowledgement despite their significant leadership during the grape strikes in Delano, PCN 2011 (entitled Luzonia) tells a story in attempt to shed light on those deprived of recognition.

The story centralizes itself in the fictional struggling nation of Luzonia, where a drought has diminished their number one crop supply, lumpia, causing a nationwide recession as well as an impending war with a rebel faction in the south. Alongside these terrible times reigns a new leader who promises peace and prosperity but has his own agenda that includes recruiting the men of Luzonia to proudly join the army for a just compensation, but as viewers will later find out—they receive much less than they were promised.

In addition to the theatrical presentation, PCN 2011 will feature a wide variety of performing arts with emphasis on displaying the Philippine culture. There will be a choir singing songs in both English and Tagalog, a live rondalla and student music ensemble, a set of modern dances, as well as a live musical band to play the background music throughout the progress of the show—a first in Akbayan’s PCN history.

Being tied in with these entirely student-run performance aspects are the dances of the Philippine islands.

“We have a repertoire of fifteen cultural dances this year,” said Anthony Cauilan, PCN Coordinator and the show’s Cultural Dance Director. “All of which are being taught and performed by members of Akbayan. The members teaching the dances also have experience from learning and performing with folk dance companies around the Bay Area, such as the Kariktan Dance Company in Concord, Likha Pilipino Folk Ensemble in San Francisco, as well as Kaisahan, Kawayan Folk Arts, and the Hiyas Philippine Folk Dance Company of San Jose, so we fully expect to immerse our audiences with our culture through folkloric arts.”

Akbayan’s 23rd Annual Pilipino Cultural Night will have its opening night on Friday, April 29 and will also have two shows on Saturday, April 30 at San Jose State’s University Theater, located on San Fernando next to the Martin Luther King, Jr. Library. Luzonia’s Saturday afternoon matinee at 1:00 PM also doubles as a “high school special,” where high school students will have the ability to see the show at a decreased $9 rate.

Tickets are $10 for students with a valid school I.D., $12 general admission, and $15 at the door. The option of putting tickets on will-call is available online by e-mailing tickets@akbayansjsu.org. The attached flyer has additional information.

About Pilipino Cultural Night
For over twenty years, Pilipino Cultural Night, or PCN, has been Akbayan’s biggest event of the spring semester. The event is a student-run theatrical presentation that centralizes an important theme in Pilipino-American society. Tied together by a theatrical play, music, dance, and other folk arts, members participating in the production earn on-stage performing experience while also broadening their knowledge of the Pilipino culture.

About Akbayan Pilipino-American Organization
Akbayan, meaning “Embracing in Friendship,” is San Jose State’s premier Pilipino-American organization. Originally a social outlet founded in 1976, Akbayan has since adopted the aspects of cultural awareness and community activism to become one of the most active organizations on the San Jose State campus with highly regarded events such as its annual Pilipino Cultural Night (PCN), Raising Awareness Amongst Pilipinos (RAAP) Conference, and its increasingly competitive social presence in FRIENDSHIP GAMES, hosted every year by Cal-State Fullerton. For more information on the Akbayan Pilipino American Organization of San Jose State University, visit the website at http://www.akbayansjsu.org.

About ProjectPEARLS
Peace. Education. Aspiration. Respect. Love. Smile. ProjectPEARLS is a small organization of families and friends who want to make a difference in the lives of underprivileged children in the Philippines without politics, religion, race, national origin, economic status, sex, color, or age. For more information on ProjectPEARLS, visit the organization’s website at http://www.projectpearls.org.

To RSVP via Facebook, click the following link:


Jonathan Juntado / Anthony Cauilan
PCN Coordinator, Akbayan SJSU
(650) 922-4910

Ansel Modesto / Michelle Raganit
Public Relations Officers, Akbayan SJSU
(408) 421-4869

Danreb Victorio
President, Akbayan SJSU
(408) 250-3823