The Cultural Center of the Philippines (Filipino: Sentrong Pangkultura ng Pilipinas, or CCP) is a government owned and controlled corporation established to preserve, develop and promote arts and culture in the Philippines. The CCP was established through Executive Order No. 30 s. 1966 by President Ferdinand Marcos. Although an independent corporation of the Philippine government, it receives an annual subsidy and is placed under the National Commission for Culture and the Arts for purposes of policy coordination. The CCP is headed by an 11-member Board of Trustees, currently headed by Chairperson Emily Abrera. Its current president is Raul Sunico.
Before the turn of the 20th Century, artistic performances were primarily held in plazas and other public places around the country. In Manila, the Manila Grand Opera House, constructed in the mid-19th Century, served as the primary venue for many stage plays, operas and zarzuelas and other notable events of national significance. Conditions improved with the construction of the Metropolitan Theater in 1931 and smaller but adequately equipped auditoriums in institutions like Meralco, Philam Life, Insular Life, Ateneo de Manila University and Far Eastern University. In 1961, the Philippine-American Cultural Foundation started to raise funds for a new theater. The structure, designed by Leandro Locsin, was to be built on a 10-hectare (25-acre) lot in Quezon City.
In the meantime in 1965, Imelda Marcos at a proclamation rally in Cebu for her husband's bid for the Presidency, expressed her desire to build a national theater. Marcos would win his election bid and work on the theater started with the issuance of Presidential Proclamation No. 20 on March 12, 1966. Imelda, now the First Lady, persuaded the Philippine-American Cultural Foundation to relocate and expand plans for the still-born theater to a new reclaimed location along Roxas Boulevard in Manila. To formalize the project, President Marcos issued Executive Order No. 60, establishing the Cultural Center of the Philippines and appointing its board of directors. The board would elect Imelda as chairperson, giving her the legal mandate to negotiate and manage funds for the center.
Events and programs
The scope of activities the center engages in include architecture, film and broadcast arts, dance, literature, music, new media, theatre and visual arts. Aside from the its promotion of local and indigenous artists, it has played host to numerous prominent and international artists like Van Cliburn, Plácido Domingo, Marcel Marceau, the Bolshoi Ballet, the Kirov Ballet, the Royal Ballet, the Royal Danish Ballet, the New York Philharmonic, and the Cleveland Symphony Orchestra among many others.
From 1972, the CCP administered the Order of the National Artists, which is the highest recognition the government of the Philippines gives to individuals who made significant contributions to the development of arts in the country. The Order was established in 1972 after the death of renowned painter Fernando Amorsolo, through the auspices of Proclamation No. 1001. A year later, the Board of Trustees of the Center was designated as the National Artists Award Committee. Today, the CCP administers the Order in conjunction with the National Commission for Culture and the Arts.
The President and Chief Operating Officer is Raul Sunico, while Chris Millado is Vice President and Artistic Director. The Board of Trustees is chaired by Emily Abrera.
Cultural Center of the Philippines Complex
The CCP Complex is an 88-hectare (220-acre) reclaimed property along Roxas Boulevard, most of which fall under the jurisdiction of the City of Pasay. It is part of the Boulevard 2000 property that spans 1,500 hectares (3,700 acres) of reclaimed land along Manila Bay. The Cultural Center owns 62 hectares (150 acres) of the land, with the rest being occupied by the Government Service Insurance System, the Bangko Sentral ng Pilipinas and the Privatization Management Office. Development of the complex was stalled until 2000, when the Philippine Supreme Court ruled with finality the Center's ownership of some 35 hectares (86 acres) of prime real estate in the complex.
Facilities and performance venues
The Tanghalang Pambansa (English: National Theater), formerly, Theater of Performing Arts, is the flagship venue and principal offices of the Center. Designed by National Artist for Architecture Leandro Locsin, its design was based and expanded upon the unconstructed Philippine-American Friendship Center. The Tangahalan is a primary example of the architect's signature style known as the floating volume, a trait can be seen in structures indigenous to the Philippines such as the nipa hut. It houses three performing arts venues, one theater for film screenings, galleries, a museum and the center's library and archives. Being a work of a National Artist, the brutalist structure is qualified to be an important cultural landmark as stipulated in Republic Act No. 10066.
In response to the need to widen its audience for the arts and to bring its programs closer to the people, the CCP has established a programmatic partnership with the Assumption Antipolo and De La Salle Santiago-Zobel School (DLSZ) in Alabang, Muntinlupa. As CCP's Satellite Venues in the East and in the South, these institutions commit to benefit from the exchange of goodwill and assistance through move-over productions, performances and artistic training workshops. Eventually, the center hopes to establish another satellite venue in the Northern part of Metro Manila.