The Dipolog Cathedral Mixed Choir was formally launch in 1973 with 10
original members, including the Founder/Director Primitivo "Tibbs"
Ajero. I was recruited in 1977 and was able to join the first
Choir Concert at the Dipolog Cultural Center. Our choreographer,
the late Nick Acopiado and the Music Director/ Founder Tibbs Ajero,
work hand in hand promoting the said concert. In my vivid
memories, that night was THE night. The cultural center was filled
up with people, sticking their necks out to see all the choir
members performed. That was just the start. the following month we
were invited to do the same at Calamba, Misamis which was promoted
by all church workers and different organizations. It was followed
by another then another, Labason, Ipil, Sta. Clara, and Salug. It
was a lot of fun. That was 25 years ago.
Last June of 2001, My friend Zenaida and I decided to organized a
reunion. We started calling people asking everybody's addresses
and telephone numbers. Mr. Tibbs Ajero, the founder was so
thrilled and happy that we came up with the idea. I started
mailing out some bio-data forms to each member to know their last
names (married) and informed them about the reunion. A lot of
phone cards were consumed, and it was a very exhausting but
exciting organizational process.
Getting ready for the Motorcade. At the SVC grounds.
June 29, 2002 was THE DAY. We started at 9:00 A.M. with a
motorcade around the city of Dipolog, headed by the Dipolog City
Police and ended at the Zamboanga del Norte Exhibition and
Convention Center. It was then followed by a concelebrated mass by
Fr. Artemio Deo and Fr. Eric Zafra, both members of the DCMChoir.
Snacks and lunch were served.
The formal program started at 7:00 P.M. at Plenary Hall,
Convention Center. A lot of Food and Drinks were waiting on the
tables. Zenaida Necosia Timosa gave her warm welcome and was
followed by a brief history of the choir by the founder Tibbs
Ajero. Fr. Vic Amplayo, O. S. A. was the guest speaker, a
songwriter/composer from Labason and now assigned in Makati City.
Good Food was served by the Calimutan Caterers and the ZN
Executive Band headed by Toto Calimutan the soloist who is also
the DCMChoi member entertained the guests, members and their
spouses. I did closed the program with a toast.
Here's the excerpts:
It's been almost 3 decades since we parted ways, and after a
yearlong of torturous preparation, your dream and my dream of
reuniting finally came. This is our big night, and it's a pleasure
seeing you all again.
Good evening. On June 19, 2001, I went with my husband to his 40th
high school reunion. Even though I felt out of place, it was an
uplifting and memorable experience for both of us. Everybody was
friendly and a good time was had by all 200 people in attendance,
classmates and their spouses. Weeks later I started to ask
myself. Why not a reunion of the Dipolog Cathedral Mixed choir. I
love the camaraderie of the organization and I wanted to see
everybody again and sing with the group once more. It was about on
that time that Zenaida and Roni were in Chicago, and we started
the organizational process of putting the pieces in place.
Being part of the choir was such a unique and fulfilling
experience, to be able to be singing with such a diverse group of
people, it meant the world to me.
To the tune of "When I fall in love," You'll never Walk Alone, "I
have dreamed," "I need you," from "Moon River," " Get Together" to
"Guantanamera," from early morning vocalization the beach,
Weddings, Mananitas, concerts, ordinations, to funerals, these are
some of the songs and things that binds the choir together. And
who could beat the voices of Loloy Bastasa, Bebot and Jun Ramirez,
Boy Adaza, Henry and Darayday, the amazing altos of Zenaida and
Lanie and the sopranos of Felsie and Maribel to name a few. Of
course, all of us have great voices I should say, or else we would
not be in the choir.
I've always enjoyed participating in music, singing and dancing as
an expression of oneself. Doing it as a member of a choir is truly
a community activity where the focus is not on me but "WE." In the
form of 'WE' the activity becomes for the greater good of
everybody with the result being a free expression of the
It's been very difficult to replicate those same emotions outside
the choir for one reason or another. That same feeling of
humanity, peacefulness and tranquility with each member was almost
impossible to find. Only through the Dipolog Cathedral Mixed
Choir, did I find myself development as an individual thorough the
organization of freely expressed ideas. It is a part of me that I
will always cherished.
L-R Boy Dasok , Pio Minerales, Johhny Paluca, Hi-Fi Ajero, Jun
Tibbs Ajero, Fe Batilona Ramirez, Ligaya Lagutin Gementiza,
Ligaya's daughter, Babie Sotillo Realiza and kids
The MOTORCADE - June 29, 2002
I would like to take this opportunity to thank everyone of you for
attending this reunion, especially to the guest speaker, Fr. Vic
Amplayo for you inspirational message and your time; to the
founder/music Director Tibbs Ajero for sharing us his talents and
leading the group once more; to the late Nick Acopiado, who gave
us his time and talent in choreography and taught us to have fun
in acting and dancing, you are terribly missed; to all the guests;
to the different committees, who took their time from their other
responsibilities and helped out organizing this affair, you did a
wonderful job; To those who didn't make it tonight, but willingly
gave their financial support like: Virgie Alabastro Cholibois;
Marifel Hampac Husfelt; Jojo
Sorronda Merrill; Genevieve Dalumpines Refugio; and to some
friends like: Eglyn
Peligrino, Josephine Peligrino; Virgie Caboverde and Lupe
Patangan; to my sister Linda, thank you all for your donations. To
my wonderful and loving husband Jerry who is my best friend, my
adviser and my critic, who stood by me during my ups and downs in
the organizational process and supported me all the way from start
to finished, thank you so much. To a dear friend of mine, Zenaida
for the weekly report for updates through telephone conversation;
to all the people I called and listened to my complains, ideas and
chica-chicas; and to those who in one way or another made this
night a night to remember, thank you all from the bottom of my
I hope that organizing this reunion, I brought a little cheer in
you lives, as you did into mine and I wish that after tonight we
would still be able to keep in touch by all means of
communication, excluding collect calls.
The ladies at the Registration : L-R Beatriz Sotillo Realiza,
Ma. Theresa Acopiado Ocampo, Zenaida Necosia Timosa, Nenita Ortega Maningo,
Marilou Magsipok Jauculan. At the back: Mahlyn Nieves Kagan,
The 3 special couples of the Choir got a treat from the
organizer. A free night stay at Top Plaza Hotel, Dipolog City with Dinner and
Breakfast. The Lucky couples are: Fe Batilona Ramirez and Cesar
Ramirez ; Nenita
Capulan de la Torre, and James Maningo. Ortega Maningo and James
Maningo and Josefina Ulla Putian and Edwin Putian. We watched their relationship grow until they got married!
Congratulations guys !!!
WE HOPE TO SEE YOU ALL ON 2005.
We sure are getting older all right, with some gray hairs, and
maybe in our menopausal period, with aching bones and knees, but
those timeless memories that we had and shared will always be
treasured in our hearts. So tonight, ignore those aches and pains,
just dance the night away and savor every minute of it, because
after tomorrow, we will be going back to the real world, our jobs
and respective homes to continue our responsibilities as parents
to our children and hope for the best that our legacy will
continue from generation to generation. Someday, I will have a
story to tell to my children and grandchildren, that I, AM A PROUD
MEMBER of the Dipolog Cathedral Mixed Choir, once upon a time.
Before ending the program, I would like to propose a toast, to
Music, Friendship, Memories and Hardwork, MABUHAY ANG DIPOLOG
CATHEDRAL MIXED CHOIR.
Thank you, have fun and enjoy the rest of the evening.
Closing remarks by:
Marylyn Nieves Kagan
Dipolog Cathedral Mixed Choir - First Grand Reunion
June 29, 2002 - Zamboanga del Norte Exhibition & Convention Center
Dipolog City, Philippines