UPCMu Alumni association

UPCMuAA 2016 General Assembly and Election of Board of Directors

Speech of Dean Jose S. Buenconsejo in the 9 April General Assembly of the UP College of Music Alumni Association 09 April 2016, Abelardo Hall Auditorium, University of the Philippines, Diliman, Quezon City

Fellow Alumni of alma mater, UP College of Music, good evening. I welcome you to this memorable event where we finalise and approve the constitution of the UP College of Music Alumni Association and elect leaders who will affirm their commitment to the revitalisation of our organisation. Foremostly, we believe this association to be a space for our continuing personal and professional growth as alumni of the College, as musicians, composers, educators, and as creative and deep thinkers of Philippine music. Thank you so much for your presence this evening. It's indeed a great pleasure to see you in Abelardo Hall Auditorium again, a place where all of us, in the past, had gone through and a place which will continue to be dedicated to the cause of Filipino music. In 2013, we marked the 50th year of the inauguration of this place, Abelardo Hall Auditorium, and this year, on the 4th of September to be exact, we will mark the one hundredth year of an institution which, without denying, had been a great part of our lives. In what way would remembering this institution be meaningful to us at present? Why would connecting that past to our individual presents significant to us now? Why return to this place? What purpose will my coming in the "here and now" serve my individual future? Shouldn't we believe that there's a spirit in our midst, a cause, an idea that we call UP College of Music? Obviously, it is that Name, like a tattoo inscribed on our skin, that connects our individual presents to that past. However, beyond that past and present, we feel the itch in our tattoo, in that same Name which now wishes to move on. But to where? I believe, we're heading towards a unified and common future. What is in the Name that really moves us? Not so obviously, it is none other than our sincere belief for a community, a matter that we now validate with our co-presencings . It is exactly the Name of the institution that compels us to re-organise outselves into a revitalized association, so that we can build a strong community, a space for our continuing professional and personal growths.

I wholeheartedly thank the steering committee, all volunteers, for making this to happen. I understand that it has been a great lesson for all of them as they crafted a draft of the constitution that aims for that idea: the good of all. For the past meetings, they met and discussed rationally how to create solid statements that will strengthen a working framework. This will serve as a guide to the future of the association. Foremost in their minds has been the inclusive representation that will speak to the varied interests of the many. The idea to create chapters is based on this principle of inclusivity, of choice and freedom, yet within the bounds of the larger sphere--the reason that is the Name. And so is the idea of a nine-member Board of Directors, which would ensure that there will be democratic participation by the majority as well as a sense of a shared responsibility amongst them given the proposed nature of the interlocking tenure of its membership in the council. The Board of Directors, the magic nine so to speak, is precisely the embodiment of a future collective voice, like that of the group of Elders in a tribal community whose wisdom will steer the association to the path of goodness and greatness. I believe the present draft of the constitution is built on solid grounds, on democratic principles and its corrollary, on the idea of freedom. Fundamentally emanating from a sound rationality, our constitution enshrines our collective aspirations as UP-tattoed professional musicians, composers, teachers, and scholars in music.

Without further ado, I welcome you again fellow alumni to this momentous occasion. Thanks so much for your presences. Without you, the kapwa, there is no reason for the "ako," the "akin," and the "sarili" to journey in its remaining years on earth alone. Between me and you, and between you and your neighbor, stands the Name of the community that has brought us all here now. I truly believe it is precisely this ethereal spirit that has moved us. Call it a spirit or a ghost, a Father or a Mother, and we the sons and daughters of this congregation of musicians, a cult whose passion is the dedicated to professional music-making, and we know its Name: UP College of Music.

Mabuhay to us all! Good evening.