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Pimentel, Sicam write 30.

Byline: Nestor U. Torre

We mourn the loss of two friends and colleagues in entertainment and the arts, singer-TV host Pepe Pimentel and award-winning playwright Fidel Sicam. Pepe, an exponent of Spanish songs, was a pioneer producer-host of local game shows, with his signature program, "Kwarta o Kahon," being emulated or downright imitated by other producers.

Pepe was once also the gregarious owner of a small restaurant in the Morato area, where our group would go for good food and even yummier conversation.

And, late at night, we occasionally observed Pepe making the rounds of his barangay, also in the Morato area, collecting trash with his trusty rolling container. Talk about serving the people at the grassroots level, nothing beats that unusual image to this day!

Now that Pepe had left us, we hope that other singers join Pilita Corrales in espousing the performance of Spanish songs, because they're a part of our multicultural heritage. As for the many imitators of Pepe's "Kwarta o Kahon" program format, perhaps they can also pay tribute to his memory by finally owning up to copying his signature show?

Acclaimed playwright

SICAM. Artistic ascendancy.

When we began winning awards for playwriting decades ago, we were the unexpected recipient of warm words of encouragement from our much-admired senior, the acclaimed playwright, Fidel Sicam. He went out of his way to praise our tyro efforts, and we felt fortunate that he and other artists we looked up to would boost our confidence and self-esteem, instead of regarding us as brash "competition."

Being a leading Filipino playwright in English, Sicam had the artistic ascendancy to motivate us to do even better in our own work. That's why, a few years ago, we got in touch with one of Fidel Sicam's relatives and told him that we wanted to pay tribute to him by staging one of the acclaimed playwright's "forgotten" plays. Unfortunately, nothing came of that plan-but we still want to honor Sicam with a "revival" production this year, to help keep his memory alive.

Incidentally, we also want to stage a play by another much-admired senior playwright, Estrella "Star" Alfon, so if you're a relative, do get in touch with us (564-8370). Maybe we can make a Sicam-Alfon evening of it?

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Publication:Philippines Daily Inquirer (Makati City, Philippines)
Date:Feb 8, 2013
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