One of the most intimate gigs we’ve been in.

We were there during the last night of Cynthia Alexander’s send-off series last Saturday, June 23 at the Conspiracy Bar along Visayas Avenue. It was our first time to see her perform live on stage and we’re glad to have been there inspite of the jam-packed crowd that would rival that of Divisoria’s during the Christmas last-minute shopping season. In fact, for us, that amount and density of people was necessary to create that very intimate and personal mood for the gig.

There were familiar faces among the crowd and the performers alike, and we can only imagine how touched Cynthia felt to see all of these people coming together to bid farewell. The artist sang crowd favorites as well as newer ones like our particular favorite, “Kabaka”, a poem by award-winning poet and educator Vim Nadera, arranged and sang by Cynthia herself. The night was nothing short of spectacular in every aspect, yet, the experience is bittersweet because the truth remains: Cynthia Alexander is leaving the country to seek greener pastures.

Filmmaker Sari Dalena documents the event.

Not his most flattering picture, but hey, that’s Mark Escueta of Rivermaya performing with Cynthia on stage.

Now, we’ve all heard of Filipino nurses, teachers, doctors and other professionals going abroad for a better future. But musicians? Something must be really, really wrong. And according to Cynthia, there is, indeed, something very wrong with the Philippine music industry. In an interview with Interaksyon.com, she’s particularly discouraged by the Optical Media Board’s thougtless regulations for artists like her, read this or view the pdf version here.

Here, ladies and gentlemen, is an artist who truly makes significant contributions to Original Pilipino Music, and to see her resort to leaving the country for better fortune is a real shame.

However, she says she can never leave the country for good since this is her one and only home. That can never be good enough for the fans, of course.

Good thing we got her to sign our copy of her album, had a blurred photo together and a memory of our first, and probably, our last Cynthia Alexander gig.

Cynthia wrote: “Love will come to you.” Yes, it did.

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