February 9, 2023

The city government honored the head of the National Commission for Culture and the Arts for his contributions to Baguio’s creative sector.

Mayor Benjamin Magalong presented the plaque of recognition to acclaimed theater and movie director and actor Arsenio “Nick” Lizaso for his invaluable contributions to the city’s creative and art community as chair of the NCCA.

Lizaso, former president of the Cultural Center of the Philippines, was honored during the flag-raising rites at the city hall last week.

Magalong conveyed the city’s gratitude for Lizaso’s contributions in revitalizing Baguio’s creative economy and rejuvenating the culture and arts sector.

“Mr. Lizaso has been a pillar of support to Baguio’s creative endeavors encouraging us to be better,” the mayor said.

Lizaso expressed his gratitude to the city for the recognition, citing Baguio’s contributions to the national government’s efforts to bring culture and the arts to the grassroots.

“I thank Baguio, where I made my first film; where I brought the Philippine Philharmonic Orchestra to the 2019 ‘An Enchanting Baguio Christmas’; and where I held numerous mentoring efforts for local artists, especially  film-makers to scale up their works,” he said.

Some of the notable city projects he contributed to the city include the study on the thematic indicators of culture as part of Unesco’s sustainability goals for 2030, a pilot project of Unesco in cooperation with NCCA and Baguio and the city’s Cultural Mapping Project.

Lizaso also assisted the city acquire the P15 million grant for the Diplomat Hotel conservation management plan and design for a high school for the arts for the Cordillera and Region 1 and the NCCA support to the Montañosa Film Festival. – Gaby B. Keith