Pianist Natascha Majek will join Raul Sunico in a fundraising concert for the Museo Pambata on Oct. 24.
Music For Museo
Ida Anita Q. Del Mundo (The Philippine Star) - October 7, 2018 - 12:00am

MANILA, Philippines — The Museo Pambata, which has become an icon in every Filipino’s childhood through the years, has been undergoing several changes as it continues to welcome younger and younger visitors.

Recently, the Museo Pambata Foundation Board of Trustees welcomed Bambi Mañosa-Tanjutco as the new president of the museum for 2019, while founder and previous president Nina Lim-Yuson will become chairman of the board.

The museum itself has been updated with exciting new exhibits. “Museo Pambata’s latest interactive exhibit is the Diwata Satellite, a Philippine micro satellite launched to the International Space Station in March 23, 2016, built and designed by Filipinos,” Yuson shares on the exhibit that opened late last year.

In the Diwata Satellite exhibit, children can shoot for the stars and beyond as they pretend to track the satellite. Through fun activities, they will learn how big the satellite is and understand how high above the Earth it can reach.

Not all of the Museo Pambata’s projects happen within the museum walls. In fact, the museum’s staff and volunteers often find themselves taking their brand of fun education to the streets.

The Ate Academy – a program that has been ongoing for a year now – is an informal school for street children in partnership with Childhope. “Museo Pambata uses its philosophy that ‘learning should be fun’,” Yuson says. Already, four of the children in the program have felt so encouraged to pursue their education that they have returned to public school.

Through the years, the museum has become prone to wear and tear because of its nature as an interactive, hands-on museum. It takes funds and manpower to ensure that the exhibits are maintained for more and more young learners to enjoy. “We have several good programs such as crafts, storytelling, Child’s Rights workshops, puppetry... all need funding,” Yuson adds.

In line with this, the Museo Pambata will mount a fundraising concert on Oct. 24, 7 p.m., at the Maybank Performing Arts Theater in Taguig City.

“It was Faye Miravite, a very good friend and supporter of Museo, who listened to my tales of hope,” says Yuson. Miravite, who is an actuary, composer, poet and linguist, helped organize the concert. Her company is also the major sponsor of the fund raiser.

The concert features eminent pianists Raul Sunico and Natascha Majek in a rare duo piano concerto.

Museo Pambata is part of every young Filipino’s childhood. The exhibits encourage kids to touch, interact, play and have fun while learning.

Sunico achieved worldwide recognition when he performed four piano concertos of Sergei Rachmaninoff in one evening. He has performed in solo recitals as well as with the best orchestras throughout Europe, North America, Australia, Middle East and Asia.

Majek collaborates as a pianist with various orchestras, including the Symphonie Orchester Basel, and has been soloist with other orchestras. She has performed in numerous recitals in Switzerland, Austria and Italy, with a repertoire that extends from Bach to early 20th-century music.

Funds raised from the one-night-only concert will be used “to be able to maintain a quality educational experience for all children.”

Museo Pambata receives donations from generous individuals, corporations and foundations who are also committed to providing alternative learning venues for children.

Yuson also looks forward to creating new exhibits and continuing to support the museum’s children’s program.

One major exhibit being developed is on children from the different indigenous groups of the Philippines.

Looking forward, Yuson says, “We’re dreaming to have a permanent home!” Museo Pambata also continues to strive towards being the foremost Philippine children’s museum with global linkages. Yuson’s dream for the children of the Philippines is “to grow up in a safe and supportive environment. That our policy makers give priority to children’s rights.”

She adds, “Museo Pambata is always prepared to stand up for children, especially the marginalized groups.”

To learn more about the concert and other avenues of support for Museo Pambata, email concertoduo@gmail.com or call 523-1797.

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