CHEERS! More than 40 New Year's Wishes from Filipino Theater People

It has been a tough year for us, Filipinos, but we were able to rise above the challenges and showed the world how strong and resilient we are. We wish that for the coming new year our hearts be filled with love and compassion for everyone. has recently surveyed some of our friends in the Philippine theater industry--more than 40 of them--about their New Year's wishes!

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"My wish is for all the survivors of typhoon Yolanda to be presented with a concrete rebuilding plan for their cities and towns that can be implemented as quickly as possible. Something to keep them moving forward in the New Year." - Jon Jon Briones

"My wish is just for our country to recover from all the devastation and start healing." - Menchu Lauchengco - Yulo

"I wish for all families and individuals, especially those struck by tragedy this year, may it be the storm, earthquake, war, or personal misfortunes, to be given a chance to celebrate and be blessed with the love and cheer of Christmas, even in the simplest of ways by the people around them." - Carla Guevara-Laforteza

"My wish for every Filipino, including myself but most especially those in power, is to have the compassion, conscience and selfless attitude towards our fellow men not only when we go through tough times but as a way of life...It breaks my heart when I hear stories, all the more when I personally encounter and experience horrible things and incidents from them...I have non-religious or even atheist friends here in London who live their lives as how God wants us to live ours. Hypocrisy, pretensions, immorality, corruption, class system, and power playing seem to be the way of life in our country and it's very non-Christian, I believe."- Ima Castro

"That the survivors and those displaced by typhoon Yolanda receive the help they need and are able to pick themselves up from this tragedy. Also, that more people watch and support the local theater scene... especially Red Turnip Theater shows." - Rem Zamora

"I wish for a fantastic year for Red Turnip Theatre. I wish for love and light for our fellow Filipinos who survived Yolanda. I wish we, Pinoys, would wake up, unite, and not allow pigs to run our country I wish for more quality time with my son. I wish for more surf time. I wish for health and beauty. I wish for a mind-blowing role in an exciting new film project. I wish for a mind-blowing role in an exciting new play. I wish to direct a mind-blowing new play. I wish to spend half the year traveling with the love of my life (or a quarter). Oh and an Oscar would be nice."- Ana Abad Santos

"My New Year's wish is for the theater community to come together, shed all forms of divisiveness and creative/artistic prejudice, and engage in a conversation that will set the wheels into motion for a strong, stable, and sustainable theater ecology for our local theater scene. I've always been a firm believer in the value of inclusivity rather than exclusivity and this is something, I hope most people working in the theater industry can learn (or relearn)." - Toff de Venecia

"My wish? A rerun of 'Maxie, the musicale.' Please? Please? Please?... or a spin-off show for Audie Gemora's Roger De Bris ('The Producers'). That would make me truly happy." - Topper Fabregas

"More theatre shows and more audiences to show them to!" - Robbie Guevara

"Wishing everyone a wonder filled Christmas! One that awakens the spirit of childlike innocence asleep in every soul And a New Year full of love, laughs and of course loads of Live Theatre!" - Jaime del Mundo

"During these trying times, I wish for peace, love, and goodwill to all... and a speedy recovery and rebuilding of the lives of those severely affected by the typhoon." - Santi Santamaria

"Watching plays and musicals gives me much joy, clears my mind, and nourishes my soul so I'm hoping for a year-round showcase of original Filipino works, licensed shows, breakthrough stage performances and technically polished productions in 2014, plus new theater groups." - Mickey Muñoz

"For 2014, while I live in Hong Kong, I wish for more opportunities to make music and be involved in the Philippine art scene. I hope that the scene continues to thrive and that more people join theater, come to the theater, and promote theater. I pray for good health and genuine happiness for my friends and family. I personally hope to make more choices driven by courage and not fear. And I wish that the Philippines finds the strength to look back at 2013, from corruption to calamity, and truly believe they can rise above it all." - Rony Fortich

"May theater arts be used as an instrument for social transformation, and as a tool to help the less fortunate. Philippine Stagers Foundation has just signed up as a partner of the Career Executive Service Officers of the Philippine Government to Project Paglaum, a workshop and training utilizing performing and visual arts for the youth survivors of Typhoon Yolanda to move on and create a good means of livelihood. "- Vince Tañada

"That we should give thanks more often for all the blessings, with acts of goodness and kindness." - Mio Infante

"3 things: 1. Prosperity for all, especially those recovering from the calamities of the year past; 2. The death of the venal politics of our country as we know it; and 3. An increased appreciation for, and consequent flourishing of the arts and artists in the Philippines." - Bart Guingona

"Holiday wishes: total recovery of the victims of typhoon Yolanda, spiritual and physical. And a prudent resolution for how the country should handle such disasters in the future." - Felix Rivera

"My wish this Christmas and New Year is to be able to enroll and attend intermediate dance classes and successfully manage my professional time and my personal matters since I'll be married before 2013 ends." - Vincent Paul Evangelista

"My honest wish is that all our young and talented Filipino classical artists will be able to fulfill their dreams. That everyone will be given equal opportunities to perform and earn well. That they be given venues to be heard so that they can inspire others to love their craft, to value the arts and preserve our culture." - Ana Feleo

"My Christmas wish is that people would not forget the simpler things in life that used to make us all happy, that despite all the advances in technology, what truly makes us happy is love and care for one another." - Oliver Usison

"I have two loved ones leaving for abroad within the next few weeks. My greatest wish is for them to be safe and to find happiness and fulfillment while they work overseas. Theater-wise, I fondly wish for a productive 2014. Vis-a-vis film or TV, theater really tends to eat up an actor's time and with luck, I will be able to squeeze in many nice projects within the year, showcasing my versatility and opening up new avenues for growth. Happy New Year, dearest theater-goers! May your tribe increase." - Noel Rayos

"I wish that those who have been struggling this year, especially the victims of typhoon Yolanda, find the strength and hope that they need to overcome what they've been through. I pray they never lose faith, that they know they're never alone and that they're showered with love this season. I know there's a reason for everything and I claim that 2015 will be a fresh start for us" - Giannina Ocampo

"3 wishes: 1. I wish the Philippines completely recovers from Typhoon Yolanda; 2. I wish the theater industry keeps on growing especially in 2014; and 3. I wish the politicking in the Philippines would stop hindering any progress that we can potentially have as a country." - Reb Atadero

"I am praying for a healthier year for Philippine theater. Most of all, I hope and pray for more theater practitioners who understand, appreciate, and encourage a positive way to nurture students, actors, and production and backstage personnel." - William Elvin Manzano

"I wish to do more challenging roles if I would do theater next year. On the other hand, if you are asking me for material things, of course I do have wishes: I might need a new MacBook Pro or an iPhone 5c. Haha!" - Carlos Canlas

"My Christmas Wish List: 1. Autographed CD of Lea Michele's new album; 2. Tickets to 'Wicked; (Can't have enough of 'Wicked'); 3. More theater opportunities for me! I'm thrilled to be back on stage; 4. Good health; 5. Relax and spend the holidays with my loved ones; and 6. Magical ability to NOT gain weight over the Christmas break" - Sab Jose

"I want my own super-powered flying reindeer robot. I want an all-expense-paid trip to Tokyo with good friends. I want beautiful shoes. I want the local theatre scene to thrive like crazy! But really, all I want for Christmas is...You. Kidding! Honestly, it may sound corny but I really wish that people would drop all worldly distractions (ahem, put down those smartphones); try to forget all their woes; go back to the basics; and really rediscover or learn something new about love and happiness this holiday season. I wish that they'd approach the new year with even just a little bit more courage and goodness in their hearts. Too corny? Okay I'll stick with the robot reindeer." - Maronne Cruz

"My only wish is for all our countrymen affected by Yolanda: I wish for healing and that they would be able to recover from this tragedy. May next year be a good year for them." - Red Concepcion

I already got more than I wished for so my wish would be for the Yolanda survivors to get their Christmas and New Year's wishes. - Guido Gatmaytan

"Coming into a new year at a time I have just decided to shift gears in my career is perfect timing. For 2014, I wish to make bolder choices as I decide to pursue my passion full on. It will be all or nothing. This scares me, but that's how it should be." - Gab Medina

"I wish that someday I would see an original Filipino musical/s on Broadway." - Poppert Bernadas

"Aside from the Christmas spirit reaching those affected by Yolanda, my Christmas and New Year's wish would be to survive the rest of my senior year and get into the college of my dreams." - Ignacio Tambunting

"My wish is that the Philippines will rise high above the adversity that we have recently faced with Yolanda, and that the solidarity that the Filipino people have shown during this time continues on even after the all the international aid we have received. And that we never forget bayanihan. And that those guilty of the PDAF issue be brought to justice. And world peace." - Lorenz Martinez

"My New Year's wish is for all theatre actors to earn a good living next year from shows and less from working another job, especially those with families." - Nelsito Gomez

"This Christmas, I pray for light to continue shining onto our devastated Brothers and Sisters. May the Christmas and New Year's spirit enlighten them so that they may still be able to find hope and gratefulness despite their loss. For the theater industry, I wish that it would just keep on growing so that we may continue to touch lives by sharing our talents. May there be more and more shows with tons and tons of audiences this coming year!"- Peachy Atilano

"My Holiday wishes: 1. That my family grow more in God's grace, love and providence; 2. That we, as a people, realize that love of country and solidarity will bring about true change; and 3. That our country move forward to progress and peace for the benefit of current and future generations." - Robert Zialcita

"As a performer, my personal request from Santa is to one day sing on stage with other thespians in ABS-CBN's year-end special and to sing accompanied by Rony Fortich. On a serious note, though it sounds very Miss Universe-ish, I want people to realize the importance of being with family and loved ones. Too often we take them for granted and prioritize other things over people that matter only to learn later on that we want to be with them when they're already gone. It is a cliche but I think we must make an effort to let people feel that we value them." - Amiel Mendoza

"My wish for the holidays is that all the people who were affected by Typhoon Yolanda will have a Christmas filled with joy and happiness, despite having lost everything dear to them. And my wish for the new year is that the Philippines will rise from the tragedy of the typhoon, and that everyone dear to me, and entire world will have a wonderful 2014 ahead." - Josh Ramirez

"The Philippine theatre industry has been blessed with a lot of great productions as well as new talents this year. It is so much alive and the circle is getting bigger each day with new people getting interested and involved in the industry -- from actors, designers, producers to the marketing and production side of the business. My wish for the coming year is that there would be an enormous audience development, that people would make theatregoing a habit just like how watching a movie has become a weekly staple source of entertainment for Filipinos. I wish that every single moviegoer would discover that there is so much more experience to take home with them in watching a play or a musical backed up with live music from an orchestra. Watching a play is a '4D' experience wherein the story unfolds right in front of the viewer, making its audience a part of every scene and no other medium can deliver any storyline with such vivacity other than a Live Theatre performance. I wish that 2014 would become a more vibrant year for the theatre industry with seats getting filled in each and every performance of our hard Working Theatre actors in all the shows of all theatre companies set in the coming year." - John Alaras

"For the New Year : 1. I wish that my original musicals for 2014 would be successful and inspire people. 2. I wish that there would be more Theater Productions next year. This year has been an epic year for Philippine theater; 3. I wish for new and exciting projects. Something that I haven't tried or done. Perhaps do scoring for a movie; 4. I miss acting. I wish I can act again; 5. I miss playing abroad. Wishing that there would be a tour for a production I'll be doing next year." - Ceejay Javier

"I wish that Filipinos would realize their power to elect good leaders and use this power to finally eradicate corruption in our government, which hinders the fulfillment of all the other things I wish for our country (economic stability, free education, free health services, provision of the basic needs of every Filipino, funding for cultural projects, sports and the arts, etc). I wish they would think twice before selling their votes or do their research on those who want to "serve" our country. "Naghahanap na sila ng lider para sa pagbabago". "Nililikha ng panahon ang bayani, kapag dapat may magtanggol sa inapi." After what happened to our families, relatives and friends in Visayas, I also wish that all the donations given by other countries/ companies/organizations really go to the people who were affected by typhoon Yolanda, not in the pockets of corrupt officials. (I mean, come on, where else have you heard about having tax for cash donations... only in the Philippines!!!) Our government officials (especially the president) should have the best interest of the people that they (he) govern(s). The only way to help our country is by putting our own WANTS and INTERESTS aside and thinking of what is best for our country before doing anything hasty (especially with officials in our government who SHOULD be responsible for the needs and interest of their people). "Itong bayan muna higit sa lahat, maging sa kapatid, asawa o anak." I also wish that our government officials do not forget their conscience, morals and ethics once they step into their offices. We need selfless and honest leaders. "Mahirap ang maging bayani o santo." (Tagalog lines from "San Andres B Opera") - Charley Magalit

"I guess my New Year's wish would be that in light of the recent tragedies that our country has had to face, we'll finally be able to really buckle down and address problems that our country has yet to find solutions to. And hopefully we will rise as a unified and organized nation. And on a more selfish note, I do hope that with the help of some Christmas and New Year's magic, 2014 would be an amazing year for Philippine theatre. - Mikkie Bradshaw

"It has always been a challenge to strike a balance between the passion for theater news reporting and monetizing your website, specifically for the Philippine entity of, which was launched by the New York office five years ago. The love for writing about theater is always there. However, the business aspect to further fuel that already burning 'labor of love' for the theater is important to tackle, too. Thus, my news team is very thankful for the advertisers and show partners coming from the Philippines. My team will continue to tap new advertisers and show partners-please do not slam your doors on us in 2014!" - Oliver Oliveros

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From This Author Jeffrey Aguiman

Jeffrey is a corporate professional who loves theater. He also loves traveling, and has visited Hong Kong, Macau, Vietnam, Cambodia, Singapore, the United States, and (read more...)

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