A popular actor from the Philippines will be in B.C.’s second-largest city later this month for a Filipino Canadian festival. Yam Concepcion will be one of the entertainers at Fiesta Extravaganza. The free event will be held on July 22 and 23 at Surrey Civic Plaza.
Concepcion, star of the 2013 thriller Rigodon, will make an appearance at 5 p.m. on July 23. Her film credits include Nightshift and Nilalang. She also appeared in several television series, including Dugong Bunay and Halik sa Jade.
In 2021, Concepcion married Miguel Cuunjieng, a corporate-sustainability expert who lives in New York. Now a mother of a toddler, the 35-year-old Concepcion is a popular travel and lifestyle vlogger on YouTube.
Watch this Yam Concepcion Throwback TV and Film Reel
The two organizers of Fiesta Extravagaza—the Fil-Can Cultural Heritage Society and ReyFort Media—are promoting the event as a “Festival of Smiles”. It will begin with a parade and include pop-up markets, food stalls, and musical and dance performances.
Meanwhile on July 10, Surrey mayor Brenda Locke signed a “Certificate of Special Recognition” for Fiesta Extravaganza. BMO and Vancouver-Oasis Production Corp. are the sponsors.
Fiesta Extravaganza follows Pinoy Festival
Fiesta Extravaganza will take place nearly a month after the first Pinoy Festival in Burnaby. The Burnaby Filipino Cultural Society, the Pinoy Festival Alliance, and the Mabuhay House Society organized their celebration in Civic Square in Metrotown, attracting about 10,000 people.
Both festivals were created to celebrate the 125th anniversary of the declaration of Philippine Independence Day on June 12, 1898. On that day, Filipino revolutionary Emilio Aguinaldo issued the decree after his nation’s colonizer, Spain, had lost the Spanish-American War.
However, the winner of that war, the United States, asserted authority over the Philippines and maintained control for decades. The Philippines only gained true autonomy after the defeat of the Japanese occupiers in the Second World War.