WHO’s WHO? World-renowned Filipino Performers at the 31st ASEAN SUMMIT Gala Dinner

WHO’s WHO? World-renowned Filipino Performers at the 31st ASEAN SUMMIT Gala Dinner

The Association of South East Asian Nations (ASEAN) Summit gala night was a showcase not only of Filipino hospitality and culture but also of world-renowned Filipino talents who performed in an after-dinner presentation for the visiting world leaders, diplomats and top government officials from different South East Asian countries and dialogue partners such as Canada, India, Japan, Netherlands and the United States of America.

US President Donald Trump was caught on camera being amazed by the spectacular presentation and even receiving a standing ovation from a crowd of 1,300 guests.

ASEAN is celebrating its golden year and the Philippines holds the current chairmanship. President Rodrigo Duterte graciously welcomed the world leaders together with his common-law wife, First lady Honeylet Avanceña.

“I am deeply honored to host this rare occasion where a number of world leaders are gathered in celebration of the 50th anniversary of ASEAN,” he said.

There are at least 600 Filipino artists, the very best among singers, hip-hop, tap, folk, ballroom and ballet dancers, orchestra, band and solo instruments transformed SMX Arena into a grand festive showdown. Dubbed as “Bravo Asean”, the presentation was divided into three parts and ran for 30 minutes.


Bacolod contemporary dance company performing a traditional Filipino dance


The after-dinner presentation started with a bang featuring a marching band, and the Philippine Harmonic Orchestra who played with prowess Hotdog’s classic pop hit, “Manila, Manila.”

Violinist Joseph Byran Cimafranca and 12-year-old cellist Damodar Das Castillo rendered their solo parts of the song.

Next in line was “Partners” which featured five dance groups.

A contemporary dance company from Bacolod City made way for Ballerina Candice Adea followed by a superb tap dance performance of youth from Davao City, ballroom, and B-Boy dancers.

The last portion of the presentation called “Jubilare”, was a showcase of amazing Filipino voices singing “a medley of very inspiring songs” arranged by Danny Tan, featuring Asia’s Nightingale, Ms. Lani Misalucha, Jed Madela, Darren Espanto, Jonalyn Viray, David Ezra Cruz, Sam Shaof and Elha Nympha among others.

Ms. Lani Misalucha, Jonalyn Viray, David Ezra Cruz, Jed Madela, Elha Nympha, Dareen Espanto, Sam Shaof in the gala dinner performance in the third part called “Jubilare”



Jed Madela



Elha Nympha, Dareen Espanto and Sam Shaof


The performance got many praises from social media:

The night ended with the performance of no other than the president himself when US President Donald Trump requested Duterte to show his singing prowess to the delight of other leaders in the venue. He belted his favorite song “Ikaw” with no other than Ms. Pilita Corales.

Here’s a list of some of the World class Pinoy performers during the ASEAN Summit Gala dinner for the world leaders.

  1. LANI MISALUCHA . She is called the Asia’s Nightingale and very versatile in her singing style ranging from pop, rock, jazz, soul, R & B and operatic arias. During her stint in Las Vegas in 2000, she was called “New Siren of the Strip” and even voted as Best Singer in the Best of Las Vegas in 2008.          Lani-Misalucha
  2. JED MADELA. His real name is John Edward Tajanlangit and he became the first Filipino to win the WCOPA world grand champion title.


3. ELHA NYMPHA. She Rose to fame when she was declared as the winner on the second season of the The Voice Kids in 2015. She was also featured on the Little Big Shots Season 2  covering Sia’s “Chandelier” with an amazing rendition.


4. SAM SHOAF. He first appeared on TV screens when he auditioned on the season 1 of the Voice Kids. He came from a family of singers. He is the son of R & B singer Arnee Hidalgo and the nephew of Smokey Mountain member Jeffrey Hidalgo.


5. DARREN ESPANTO. He is a Filipino-Canadian singer who was born in Calgary, Alberta, Canada. He rose to fame after joining the first season of The Voice Kids Philippines.


6. JONALYN VIRAY is the Pinoy Pop Superstar Grand Winner and later became the lead singer of the trio girl-group La Diva with Maricris Garcia and Aicelle Santos.She was chosen to sing 65th Miss Universe theme song “Confidently Beautiful”.


7. DAVID EZRA CRUZ. He is a Broadway Tenor who has participated in Repertory and other theatrical productions and also became part of the group The Filipino Tenors. Do you wonder where did he get his singing prowess? From his mom, of course, no other than the incomparable Dulce.

David Ezra 4


8. JOSEPH BRYAN CIMAFRANCA is a virtouso violinist who started playing during his elementary years.

9. DAMODAR DAS CASTILLO is a 9-year-old “cellist” who stunned the audience with a great number during his Little big Shot appearance.


10.PHILIPPINE HARMONIC ORCHESTRA  is the nation’s leading symphony orchestra


11. CANDICE ADEA is a ballerina who won the top prize at the Helsinki International Ballet Competition in the senior women’s division in 2012 and some other major international awards in ballet. She had performed the principal roles in many productions including Don Quixote, The Sleeping Beauty, The Nutcracker and Peter Pan among others.



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