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Schaffhausen commemorates Jose Rizal’s 152nd birth anniversary 

Ambassador Leslie Baja with Schaffhausen City Councillor Simon Stocker
 during the traditional wreath-laying ceremony at the Rizal marker

Concert at the Rathauslaube by Fil-Am tenor Sal Malaki accompanied by pianist Dr. Abelardo Galang

The Philippine Embassy and the City of Schaffhausen commemorated Dr. Jose Rizal’s 152nd birth anniversary on 19th June in the traditional wreath-laying ceremony and in a concert by Filipino American tenor Sal Malaki.

The commemoration kicked off with a wreath-laying ceremony on the historical marker dedicated to Dr. Jose Rizal on the façade of former Hotel Müller, presently the office of Credit Suisse at around 5 o’clock in the afternoon.

During the ceremony, Schaffhausen City Councillor Simon Stocker recalled the connection between Rizal and Schaffhausen, the first city that Rizal visited on 2-3 June 1887 during his brief sojourn in Switzerland.
Ambassador Leslie Baja, in his remarks, thanked the City and Canton of Shaffhausen for the support and cooperation they have extended through the years to make the annual commemoration of Rizal’s birthday more memorable for the Filipino community in Switzerland. He made parallelism between the ideas of Rizal and the Swiss legendary hero William Tell who accordingly inspired the political and revolutionary ideas of the Philippine national hero.

The brief ceremony was followed by an ápero hosted by the Schaffhausen city and canton officials at the Haus der Wirtschaft as a prelude to a concert at the Rathauslaube by Filipino American tenor and member of Los Angeles Opera Sal Malaki, accompanied on the piano by Berlin-based pianist Dr. Abelardo Galang.
The concert opened with a very moving rendition of “God and God Alone” by composer by Phil McHugh. The whole repertoire was an evocative story of Rizal’s own personal struggles as he worked on awakening the political consciousness of the Filipino people, as well as a moving account of the Filipinos’ aspirations for freedom from foreign oppressors.

More than a hundred people attended the concert, most of whom were Swiss and German locals and members of the Filipino community from the nearby cantons and cities along the Swiss-German border. Representatives of the local print media were also present at the event. END


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