Summer's forever at KULTURA!

The 2014 Kultura Filipino Arts Festival, which spanned four days from the August 7-10, was the biggest one yet - with over 3500 festival-goers! In case you missed it, here's a look back on the Toronto-flavoured Filipino art and culture summer festival!

Day 1: Get Nostalgic and Out Here

Get Nostalgic, Kapisanan's 2nd Annual Fundraising Dinner, opened the festival this year! The event-goers were treated to a menu of memories created by Chef Rudy Boquila (Lamesa) and Chef Bas Pesce (Porzia), and serenaded by Victoria Marie and the Quan with OPMs (Original Pilipino Music) from the 1960s. Special shout out goes to Whole Foods Market Yorkville for providing all the fresh ingredients! The open bar + the delicious food made for happy event-goers, especially judging by the flood of pictures on social media. The first ever Liderato Award was also given to Len Cervantes, for a decade of leadership and contribution on the founding board of the Kapisanan Philippine Centre of Arts and Culture.

Right after Get Nostalgic, and still at Twist Gallery, was the debut exhibit of the NAVIGATION and CLUTCH teams: Out Here. The young men and women of the Kapisanan's arts immersion programs showed their creations to family, friends, and supporters, and there were live performances from some of the artists themselves. It was a night of love, laughter, and encouragement as the artists showcased their best work.

Day 2: Kabangka (A PSL Showcase)

Kabangka means, "on the same boat." On the night of August 8th, the PSL Collective performed the work that they have been producing during the program, and they also released their chapbook.

The attendees of the wonderful night of Filipino poetry were treated to spoken word performances from both established and emerging Filipino-Canadian poets, speaking on a plethora of topics, from the fear of missing out, to the identity of being a poet, to love, and to politics.

Day 3: If These Walls Could Talk, Carlos Celdran and Tales From the Flipside

Carlos Celdran, the Pied Piper of Manila, brought Manila to Toronto in his performances of If These Walls Could Talk. In these performances, he brings history to his audiences in the form of facts presented in a manner marked by humour and irreverence. His performance is peppered with historical anecdotes and little snippets about things that might seem as commonplace as San Miguel Beer. In the Filipino-Canadian community, where a lot of the youth are searching for their roots and for an identity, Celdran's performance hits home. Thank you to Philippine Airlines for bringing Carlos to Canada!

Tales from the Flipside presented a play in development by Celeste Palanca. Held as part of the Kultura Festival in partnership with the Carlos Bulosan Theatre, Love By Numbers carries the tagline, "What happens when two people realise they don't have the same definition of love?"

Day 4: Kultura Finale! Live! Stage, Marketplace, and Kain Kalye

The final day of the festival was a bustling hub of activity! There was a Marketplace, where Filipino-Canadian vendors and business owners set up shop, showcasing all kinds of products from cupcakes to children's storybooks to clothes. The Live! Stage was also plenty busy, with both traditional and modern dancers repping for their groups, as well as singers and musicians taking turns in the spotlight. For a peek at the stage and grounds, click here for Ryan Buan's short video of the event.

Here are some glimpses of the Marketplace (photos by DJ Tran):

Here are some performance shots (photos by DJ Tran):

The Kain Kalye Street Food festival was also a massive success, 200 Kain Kalye Passports sold out by 1pm! Thousands of festival goers were lured by the delicious aromas of Filipino food cooking outside Wychwood Barns. The first female winner of the Kain Kalye competition was Lola's Kusina, and the top grossing vendor was Halo Halo World Café (halo-halo on a hot day can't be beat!). Congratulations!

We want to say a special THANK YOU to all of our sponsors and participating food vendors! KULTURA was able to raise over $4000, which directly benefits Kapisanan's youth arts programming throughout the year.