CUA Program for Talents Launched

There’s another acronym for CUA: Catanduanes Upliftment of the Arts.

The new program was recently launched by Governor Cua and the board of directors of Catanduanes Institute of Technology Foundation, Inc. (CITFI) in order to provide support to Catandunganons imbued with skill and talent in the art.

As a starter, an art painting competition was held last July 31, participated in by 22 artists from all over Catanduanes.

The art contest was judged by CITFI Board Director and Artist Mar Vidal, fine arts teacher of UP and renowned portrait artist chosen by top personalities such as boxing legend Manny Pacquiao, Cebu Governor Gwen Garcia, former presidents Cory Aquino and Joseph Estrada, and Archbishop Ricardo Cardinal Vidal to undertake their portraits. Vidal was the teacher of Monique Llhuiller, international celebrity and owner of the Llhuiller shops and businesses in the country and abroad.

"I am impressed by the many talented artists in Catanduanes. I promise to visit Catanduanes often to help them enhance their skills and get them connected even outside Catanduanes. A talent untapped is a waste to society," Vidal said.

Last August 1, Vidal was prominently featured in the front page of the Cebu Daily News, recently adjudged the 2009 winner of the Philippine Press Institute for best edited daily paper and best opinion page. Vidal was also in the front page of this paper last week.

The top three winners in the contest met with Governor Cua to thank him for his support. The governor awarded the top prize to the winner.

"It is about time the art talents of the Catandunganons are discovered. There’s a lot of art talents in Catanduanes that they only need to be utilized for the greater good of the province. It’s time we make Catanduanes lovelier and livelier through the arts, and I thank CITFI and Mr. Vidal for taking the initiative to help discover more of these talents," Governor Cua said.

CITFI President Joseph Ocol assured the governor that CITFI, being a non-profit school, will undertake another pioneering step in Catanduanes. "This time, CITFI will trailblaze the art education sector to support Governor Cua’s program for upliftment of the arts. I’m sure other schools will follow," Ocol said. "There will be an arts center soon in Catanduanes, that will serve as gem of Bicol."

Also on hand to assist the art competition was CITFI Board Director Freddie Esmas, who also took time out to judge the "CITFI Idol" contest. Esmas, the contractor behind the construction of the first underground road tunnel in Cebu City, expressed amazement at how beautiful and peaceful Catanduanes is. "Catanduanes and Cebu should be sister provinces because both can learn many things from each other. I am going to propose that move and will be visiting Catanduanes often," Esmas said.

Source: Catanduanes Tribune - 18 August 2010