Versus Verses FlipTop as Counterculture

The University’s long and rich tradition of celebrating while studying the arts has allowed its sons and daughters to carve out their niche across art forms. UP has made its mark in mainstream and popular music, but it is also in these spaces where countrerculture has thrived. One of these emerging forms is rap battle, the modern Filipino balagtasan.

With the passage of the Philippine Mental Health Law or Republic Act 11036, the focus on mental health and related services has intensified. Signed last June 21, 2018, the law aims to integrate mental health care in the country’s existing systems. With institutional pathways already set within the University on matters concerning mental health, what are its biggest stakeholders initiating at their end?

Theater for community and nation (Photo by Bong Arboleda, UP MPRO)

At age 14, as a young theater enthusiast, Professor Glecy Atienza tried to convince high school principals to establish and maintain theater groups in their schools. During her lunch breaks, she would take a bus to Manila and speak to principals and convince school administrators to encourage students to experience theater by writing and performing.

Binibini 26 Wynonah Buot (Photo by Erwin Lim)

To say that beauty pageants are big in the Philippines would be an understatement. Year after year, millions are glued to their TV sets watching Filipinas compete on the international arena as beauty queens become heroes who dominate the national conversation. The battle, however, begins at home and two iskolars are among this year’s Binibining Pilipinas 2018 candidates, both of whom are striving to stand alongside powerful, elegant women such as Theresa Licaros, Venus Raj, Shamcey Supsup, Ariella Arida, and Catherine Untalan.

These days, a rock concert is considered a luxury a regular Isko would have to save up for. Even late-night gigs in the local music scene charge door fees for two to three musical acts plus a bottle of beer. This is why thousands of music lovers eagerly await the annual UP Fair in Diliman, the February Fair in Los Baños and their relatively younger cousin, the UP Manila (UPM) Fiesta in—you guessed it—Manila. For a small fee or even none, fairgoers are treated to local band performances in the comfort of UP campuses.