The City Government of Vigan once again celebrated the UNESCO WORLD HERITAGE CITIES SOLIDARITY CULTURAL FESTIVAL 2016 last September 5 to 10, 2016. Vigan City joins the entire heritage cities of the world in this celebration every year, celebrating its being a cultural property of the world since December 1999.
Kicking off this year’s festival was the Opening of the Solidarity Festival Food and Trade Fair situated for the first time at the Vigan Convention Center Parking Area and the “Monochrome Connection” Art Exhibit by UNP College Fine Arts at the Vigan City Legislative Building on September 5. Other highlights include the Cultural Festival wherein schools and barangays merge into five clusters and compete through different cultural events such as: Historia Oral, a historical literary writing contest with Vigan’s tales and stories as its subjects. Stories are narrated by the elderly and retold by the young in writing; Fotograpfias Y Recuerdos, a photography contest for student photographers; Folkdance Competition; and Zarzuela Ilocana, a lyric-dramatic genre that alternates between spoken and sung scene, which happened on September 6.
Sabayang Pagbigkas, a group oration with this year’s uniform piece “Tinig ng Bawat Pilipino” and Dance Sport Competition were held on September 7.
On September 8, the whole City Government led by Mayor Carlo Medina joined the Eucharistic Celebration and Renewal of Pledge to Heritage Conservation at St. Paul Metropolitan Cathedral. Ilocos Sur Governor Ryan Luis Singson and the Provincial Government of Ilocos Sur, different institutions, non-government organizations and members of the press later joined the City Government officials and employees in the Solidarity Breakfast at the Plaza Burgos. Puppetry competition, which was participated by high school and college students, was held in the evening.
A Solidarity Parade joined by the City Government officials and employess and the Repazzo de Vigan, an interactive street parade showcasing the colorful periods of Vigan’s history was held on September 9. A showdown after the parade was performed by each cluster. The last string of cultural events was held in the evening composed of Vocal Chorus, Kinnantaran, Vocal Solo, Vocal Duet, Daniw and Dallot competitions.
Culminating the festival is the awarding of cluster winners of different competitions and a cultural show in the evening of September 10 at Plaza Burgos. Cluster 4 which consists of Barangays I, II, III, IV, Pantay Daya, Pantay Fatima, Pantay Laud, Capangpangan, Capangpangan Elem. School, Jose Singson Elem. School, Pantay Elem. School, Ilocos Sur National High School, Data Center, Burgos Memorial School West, and Burgos Memorial School East came out victorious upon the completion of the different events.
These events, and the festival as a whole, aim to reactivate and strengthen cultural activities as well as promote and establish the young generation’s role in the conservation of our tangible and intangible heritage.