Tuesday, October 14, 2008

50 going steady

Pioneering Filipino food company RFM Corporation celebrated its 50th anniversary last Monday with a bash at the NBC Tent in Fort Bonifacio. Namfrel staff members were invited, RFM stalwart Joe Concepcion being Namfrel's founding chairman (and the company's main office having served as Namfrel's headquarters for the longest time).

RFM of course was/is responsible for such brands as Selecta, Pop Cola, Sarsi, White King, Swift's, and has also brought Sunkist to the country. For nostalgia junkies like myself, RFM was also responsible for this memorable TV advertisement from the early 90s, a true classic:

During the event, the company gave recognition to some of its outstanding employees, including our friend and fellow film enthusiast Nora Baua, who has been serving as Mr. Concepcion's executive assistant for...a number of years. The occasion also marked the inaugural "Yes, The Filipino Can!" Awards, given to individuals "who helped uphold or have exhibited the Yes, The Filipino Can! values and principles." This year's honorees include former senators Juan Flavier and Santanina Rasul, and BBC World anchor (and Namfrel Singapore volunteer) Rico Hizon. Naturally, distinguished people from business, media, politics, and civil society turned up for the event.

I was prepared to just watch and eat during this celebration but I didn't expect that Gary Valenciano would be going to give us a mini concert! I've never seen Gary V. perform live in his 25 years in showbiz, and there he was a few inches from my face! His medley of 80s hits including "Growing Up," "Eto Na Naman," and "'Di Bale Na Lang" really drove us nuts. Other musical guests were Bituin Escalante, the Las PiƱas Boys Choir, and The New Minstrels.

Okay, so they flung Mr. Pure Energy and his two sons across the stage, but what really made my night was the performance of one of my ultimate favorite Pinoy bands, HOTDOG! It was a total shock, as if they just announced that The Beatles were in the house. And Hotdog, the purveyors of the "Manila sound," did not disappoint, playing their classic hits "Annie Batungbakal," "Ikaw Ang Miss Universe ng Buhay Ko," "Manila," and "Bongga Ka 'Day!" It could have ended there, but the crowd was treated to a couple more hours of disco ("Souvenirs," anyone?), but of course, it just made most of us happier.

(Click any image to see more photos)
(Click any image to see more photos)

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