Filipinos Make Wave in South Korea’s Cultural Scene

By: Philippine Embassy

Filipinos continue to thrive in South Korea multicultural landscape and dominate major competitions, with 2011 seeing a rise in awards handed out to Filipino nationals in various fields.

Following are some of the achievements:

 Glen Isaac won the 17th International Postage Stamp Design Contest organized by the Korea Post and the Ministry of Knowledge Economy. Isaac’s design won over 5,300 entries from 21 countries. His design is scheduled to be issued as an official Korean stamp in 2012. Filipinos have been receiving major awards in the Korea Post’s stamp design contest for four years in a row.

 Karla Carreon, a 17-year old singer, won the grand prize at the vocal section of the K-Pop World Festival held in Changwon City on 7 December 2011. Carreon, who sang a Korean song entitled Byeol (Star), bested other finalists from 21 countries.

 At the 2011 Busan International Film Festival, the film “Nino” by Director Loy Arcenas won Best Film in the New Currents Section of the Festival. This was the first time that a Filipino film and director were recognized in the said category.

 Jasmine Lee, a Filipino-Korean TV personality and a respected leader in efforts to promote the welfare of multicultural families, made the Filipino community in South Korea proud when she played a major role in the hit film “Wandeukee / Punch.” The film premiered before an audience of 4,000 at the Open Theater of the Busan Cinema Center and went on to become one of the highest-grossing Korean movies of 2011. Lee played the part of a Filipino mother separated from her Filipino-Korean son, Hallyu star Yoo Ah- In.

 Chis Antonette Piedad-Pugay, graduated as the school valedictorian after garnering the highest GPA among the graduating students for the year 2011, a first for a foreign student at the Sogang University Graduate School of International Studies.

 Bayanihan Dance Company won over 100 other participants at the Cheonan World Dance Festival. Ms. Ina Feleo, Bayanihan’s soloist was awarded as the Festival Best Female Performer.

 Filipinos also dominated other competitions such as the Arirang Migrants Song Festival and the Bravo ASEAN in Korea. Meanwhile, members of Leg Strong, a Filipino bikers club, won in the road bike and mountain bike categories of the 2011 Bugak Skyway Mountain Challenge.

The Commission on Filipinos Overseas also recognized the efforts of Filipinos in Korea. The Woongjin Foundation’s Multicultural Family Broadcasting for Filipinos, hosted by radio personality Regina Arquiza, was chosen as the winner of the Radio Journalism Award, one of the seven categories of the first Migration Advocacy and Media Awards (MAM Awards).

Meanwhile, the Embassy-produced documentaries entitled “Multicultural Marriages in Korea: A Guide for the Marriage Migrants” and “Personal Financial Management for Overseas Filipinos in Korea,” tied at second place in the Video Documentary Category.