A mass of dancers in colorful attire and moving together with precision provided an engaging spectacle at the Monday opening of the 31st ASEAN Summit. Before the world’s leaders, the presentation had singer and composer Joey Ayala rendering his song “Magkaugnay” as performers filled the stage of the Cultural Center of the Philippines’ Main Theater.
Art and culture is at the forefront at this year’s ASEAN gathering. The night before, on Sunday (November 12), a gala dinner celebration the association’s 50th anniversary with an cultural numbers highlighting the world-class artistry of Filipino artistry. Philippine cuisine was also put on the spotlight with an exquisite dinner prepared by Chef Jessie Sinsioco and Sofitel Philippine Plaza Manila.
Top fashion designer Albert Andrada’s barong tagalog and Filipiniana outfits were worn by the ASEAN leaders and dialogue partners. A fashion show also showcased the works of local designers.
US President Trump showed his appreciation for the gala dinner show as he gave a standing ovation and applauded the OPM singers after their performance.
After the opening ceremony on Monday, Madam Honeylet Avanceña led the ASEAN spouses to a tour inside CCP. Museum and exhibition development corporation TAO Inc founder Marian Pastor-Roces and Cora Alvina guided the spouses during the tour.
A Spouses Luncheon followed at historic Manila Hotel, where guests were treated to a four-course Filipino menu prepared by the hotel’s executive chef Konrad Walter. A fashion show by Randy Ortiz, entitled “Manila Wear,” was also be staged during the luncheon to entertain the guests. Boxes of world-renowned chocolate produced in Malagos, Davao City were given away as gifts by Avanceña.