January 29, 2023

A film documentary about the July 16, 1990 killer earthquake premiered on July 16 at the Baguio City Hall.
Award-winning stage director Angelo Aurelio launched his short documentary titled “Writing Thirty” with only 90 viewers, less than a third of the venue’s 300 capacity.
It took Aurelio a month to finish filming 30 locals – artists, journalists, teachers, some politicians – all survivors of the killer quake that killed hundreds of Baguio residents 30 years ago.
Aurelio said the film pays tribute to the efforts of the people of Baguio, allowing the city to rise again from the devastation.
“Like a Cordilleran tapestry that tells a story, this community documentary is a weaved essay of stories of hope, grief, friendship, skyrocketing careers, temporary failures, and triumphs of the spirit, all intertwined in a pattern of a grand metanarrative,” he said.
With no financial support, Aurelio sold some of his paintings to fund filming and editing efforts.
The documentary shows his interview with artists Willy Magtibay, Kigao Rosimo, Roland Bay-an, Luchie Maranan, Lynette Carantes-Bibal, and national artist Kidlat Tahimik.
Also interviewed were educators Raymundo Rovillos, chancellor of the University of the Philippines-Baguio; Consolacion de Guzman, Katherine Tibayan and Marie Castro; former Baguio mayor and congressman Mauricio Domogan, Councilor Vladimir Cayabas; journalists Aurora Alhambra; Frank Cimatu, a Palanca awardee for poetry; JJ Landingin, Darius Bajo, Nonette Bennett, March Fianza, Roland Rabang, spouses Helen and Art Tibaldo, Patrick Okubo, and Pigeon Lobien.
Rafael Resuello and former city administrator Herminio Bautista narrated how they escaped death when they had to cut part of their limbs.
Aurelio, who won the Aliw Awards for best director in 2017 for his play “Anatomy of Octopus Woman,” described “Writing Thirty” as “end of the story because we will close the chapter of the earthquake.”
Apart from the commemoration of the earthquake that happened 30 years ago, the number “30” is also a journalist jargon written after a story to indicate that it is the end. – PNA