Sunday, September 4, 2016

“The Beatles Eight Days a Week” explores the Fab Four's early touring years

It was 50 years ago that the Beatles performed in their last ever public concert and now, a new film looks back at the early touring years.

By: David Robson/Express

The Beatles final live concert at Candlestick Park, San Francisco, Aug, 29, 1966. They ripped through Little Richard’s Long Tall Sally, as they had a thousand times before, then they were off. For the last time. The Beatles, the first band to make sports stadiums their stage were turning their backs on stadiums, stages and live audiences---forever. The crowd wasn’t told, nobody knew, maybe they didn’t quite know themselves but one thing they did know: they’d had enough of it.

Back then, ‘audience’ is not really the word to describe the spectators. They, mostly girls, didn’t go to Beatles concerts to listen, they went there to scream. Nobody took in the music and that included the Beatles. They couldn’t hear themselves play. It was, said Ringo, it was turning them into bad musicians. 

In 1963 a British journalist, writing about the Moptops and their fans came up with the term Beatlemania. It was no more than the truth. It really was a mania. Rudolph Valentino had crowds of idolatrous women, Frank Sinatra had his bobbysoxers, today’s celebrities court and complain about media harassment, but none have ever experienced anything like this. 

They were terrific together in every way: sharp, clever, funny and quick. If John was the wittiest and had edge, Paul was twinkly and charming and George and Ringo often had a good line. Liverpudlians have a way with words and from the start their playing, their singing, their harmonies, and their confidence were utterly captivating. Whether you were a music fan or not, a teenager or not, a girl or not, From Me To You struck a chord of recognition – this was something wonderful, something special that we were going to love.

The moptop haircuts and Beatle suits (forced on them by their manager Brian Epstein) helped too. We knew we loved them, we didn’t yet know they were geniuses (or, as the late Ian MacDonald, author of a great book on the Beatles says, Lennon and McCartney together were “a genius”).

What we see in the Eight Days A Week film is not so much their genius as songwriters, it’s the magic of their presence and their brilliance as performers, their personality and the evidence that they had something about them that nobody else has ever matched. You don’t need to be looking through rose-tinted bifocals to see how magical they were. 

The Beatles: Eight Days A Week – The Touring Years, an enjoyable feature-length film for release in cinemas September 21, captures the glorious madness of it all. Whether were around at the time or not, it comes as a shock to see how crazy it was. And even if you do remember, it’s a joy to be reminded how utterly wonderful the Beatles were. They were a 
 brilliant band, forged by Liverpool’s Cavern, numberless hours playing in Hamburg and on the road. Through all the madness, the pressure, the travel, the work, the interviews, the hysterical fans, the crazed love, the threats, what kept them sane and sustained them was their four-in-oneness. And their influence continues to this day.

The Beatles: Eight Days A Week-The Touring Years will be released in the Philippines on September 21, 2016 through Solar Pictures.

Official Website
Official Beatles website:

Solar Pictures is on Facebook, Twitter and Instagram @solarpicturesPH

Alyssa, Mika and the VolleyFriends celebrate the first-year anniversary of the biggest online volleyball community!

(L-R): VolleyFriends Johnvic De Guzman, Alyssa Valdez, Mac Dionisio, Rachel Daquis, Aby Maraño, Peter Torres, Mika Reyes, Ara Galang and Angge Tabaquero.

MANILA, August 30, 2016 – VolleyFriends (VF), the biggest and fastest-growing online volleyball community, is officially a year old! The overwhelming support has let them speed through their road to 100,000 followers on Viber Public Chat. Giving fans a look into the lives and interactions of the volleyball stars on and off the court, VF soared through its first year with live volleyball game updates, hilarious memes and throwback photos, the rise of the “payeye boys”, the ultra-fun UAAP Campus Invasion, personal milestones and a whole lot of kulitan.

The eventful and memorable year culminated in the “VolleyFriendsary” event, where top athletes, fans, media members, families and friends gathered together for a night of camaraderie with a special screening of Camp Sawi, games and prizes!

VolleyFriends fosters a community of sports excellence, fun and enjoyment among family and friends. Presented by PLDT Home Ultera, the group includes top athletes and Ultera ambassadors Alyssa Valdez, Mika Reyes, Ara Galang and Johnvic De Guzman, among others.

Based on the immense volume and loyalty of the fans on its first year, this seems to be only the beginning of the VF’s success. They are geared to take on the country by storm by headlining the biggest volleyball events in the country like the Shakey's V-League and the international tournaments of Philippine Super Liga (PSL), which include the PSL Grand Prix, the 2016 Asian Women’s Club Volleyball Championship and the 2016 FIVB Volleyball Women’s Club World Championship. Taking Philippine volleyball to a global scale, VolleyFriends encourages more fans to join the fun and anticipate even more exciting activities, online kulitan and exclusive promos in this community.

Catch the all-out kulitan of your favorite volleyball stars on Viber Public Chat! Just follow Volley Friends via

VolleyFriends and fans commemorate “VolleyFriendsary” with an all-out “groufie”.

Holcim Philippines’s Galing Mason wins national, international awards

HOLCIM PHILIPPINES’S GALING MASON WINS PRESTIGIOUS INTERNATIONAL AWARDS.   Holcim Philippines Vice President and Head of Communication and Corporate Affairs Ritzi  Villarico Ronquillo, APR receives the Gold Quill Award for Galing Mason at the New Orleans World Conference of San Francisco-based International Association of Business Communicators (IABC). (Photo below)From left:  Holcim Davao CSR Officer May Escalicas, Holcim Davao CSR Manager Base Devilleres and Holcim Philippines Stakeholder Relations Officer Veronica Viriña receive the Asia Responsible Entrepreneurship Award (AREA) 2016 given by Enterprise Asia at the International CSR Summit in Singapore from its Advisor to Enterprise Asia Professor Datuk Seri Datuk Victor Wee and from Enterprise Asia President Dato William Ng.

Galing Mason, Holcim Philippines’s flagship corporate responsibility program continues to win awards from local and international award bodies. 

Galing Mason was recently recognized in three prestigious award programs: a Gold Quill Award of Merit given at the World Conference of the San Francisco-based International Association of Business Communicators (IABC) held in New Orleans, USA; a citation in the Asia Responsible Entrepreneurship Awards (AREA) 2016 given by Enterprise Asia at the International CSR Summit in Singapore; and a PANAta Marketing Effectiveness Award given by the Philippine Association of National Advertisers (PANA) in Makati City.

Holcim Philippines was one of only three Philippine awardees from among 223 global winners whose entries were deemed world class following a rubric of excellence applied to all entries from different countries. Only 12 countries made it to the winners’ list. The Gold Quill Award is a coveted international communication award given for exceptional work that significantly contributes to business and organizational outcomes.

The AREA award was given under the Investment in People category, which recognizes policies and programs that show respect for employees and business partners. The company was among the 59 Asian businesses honoured in AREA for responsible entrepreneurial achievements by Enterprise Asia.

The PANA award was given in the advocacy marketing-integrated program category during the PANAta Marketing Effectiveness Awards.

Launched in 2004, the Galing Mason aims to help raise the skills and profile of Filipino masons to recognize their contribution in building essential structures for national development.  The program also conducts the nationwide search for outstanding masons. In its 2015 cycle of the biannual Galing Mason Awards, another component of the program, four female masons made it as national semi-finalists, a first in its history.

Since its launch, the Galing Mason has helped more than 5,000 masons get additional training and certification as skilled workers by the Technical Education and Skills Development Authority (TESDA).  Other partners are the National Housing Authority, the Association of Construction and Informal Workers, and the Philippine Constructors Association.

Holcim Philippines’s corporate citizenship efforts are guided by its core value of sustainability, that wherever it operates, communities are uplifted whether it be in infrastructure, education or livelihood, and that its core values of health and safety, customer focus, integrity, sustainability and people are authentically integrated into its operations and relationships with its stakeholders.

40th Anniversary of PICC - 10 Things You Didn’t Know About Philippine International Convention Center (PICC)

1. The Main Lobby houses one of the country’s largest Jose T. Joya paintings, “Ang Pagdiriwang”. Measuring 5.5 x 7 meters, the huge masterpiece had to be painted onsite by the National Artist as no exits or entrances to the area could fit the work of art.

Plenary External
2. PICC is an artwork in itself. Designed by National Artist for Architecture, Leandro V. Locsin, the Philippine heritage site was originally made up of 4 building modules: the Delegation Building, Secretariat Building, Plenary Hall, and the Reception Hall.  The Forum was added in 2003 to accommodate the requirements of convention organizers for an exhibition hall.

Aerial View Old
3. With a floor area of over 65,000 square feet, the construction for the massive structure was undertaken in a short span of just 23 months, from November 1974 to September 1976.

Plenary hall
4. On average, PICC holds about 400 events in a year. The most frequent types of events held at PICC are government events, corporate and association meetings and graduation ceremonies.  Among the most notable international events held at the PICC were the 40th ASEAN Ministerial Meeting, Post Ministerial Conference and ASEAN Regional Forum (2007), the 45th Annual Meeting of the Board of Governors of the Asian Development Bank (2012), and the Asia Pacific Economic Cooperation meetings in 1996 and 2015.

Vote Tabulation
Photo credits go to

5. The canvassing for the snap Presidential Elections in 1986 was held at the PICC Plenary Hall. The historic walkout of the COMELEC tabulators on February 9, 1986 is said to have triggered the People Power Revolution. 

Dj Tiesto

Janet Jackson
6. PICC has hosted some of the best local and international musical events, ranging from Lea Salonga, Ryan Cayabyab, Janet Jackson, Luciano Pavarotti, Josh Groban, Tony Bennett, Michael Buble, and even DJs Tiesto and Benny Benassi. 

Reception Hall

7. The grape-like chandeliers at the Reception Hall came all the way from Prague. Maintaining these beautiful light fixtures is no easy task, as each of the 7,000 globules and bulbs must be taken down, polished, and reinstalled. 

8. One of National Artist Arturo Luz’s most famous art pieces sits right at the centre of the PICC Courtyard. Entitled, “Anito” the stone sculpture was carved and created on the area where it stands.
BSP Museum
9. Today, PICC is being expanded with the addition of two new buildings: the Museo ng Bangko Sentral ng Pilipinas, which will house coveted art pieces from the collection of the BSP, and a new Trade Exhibit Hall to host corporate and association trade exhibits. 

Tech Booth
10. The PICC meeting rooms and halls vary in size and capacity, but all share a high standard in terms of construction, technology, and capability. Even since its earlier days, all PICC event rooms have been equipped with premium sound tech, excellent lighting fixtures and artistic construction, making the event possibilities in this one-of-a-kind place both endless and timeless.

For more information about PICC, visit their website at

Please like and share their Facebook account, 

The same red carpet where Mother Teresa, also known as Saint Teresa of Calcutta walked during her last visit in the Philippines March 1985.

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