Rizal turns 150

Ric De Vera

On June 19, Filipinos worldwide will be commemorating the 150 years birth anniversary of Dr. Jose P. Rizal, the Philippine’s national hero.

The Order of the Knights of Rizal will be the lead organisation to celebrate this momentous occasion with significant projects and activities.

First in the pipeline is the showing of the movie “Jose Rizal” in major cities of Australia and New Zealand thru the initiative of Sir Ric de Vera, KCR and Regional Commander for Australia, New Zealand and Oceania Region.

The movie is considered the biggest blockbuster film ever made in the history of Philippine cinema. It was directed by Marilou Diaz-Abaya, a UP graduate and London trained director. The movie won over 70 local and international awards, including 16 Metro Manila Film Festival, 11 FAMAS, 6 Gawad Urian,  8 Star Award for Movies, and various awards from different film festivals worldwide, such as the Berlin International and Toronto Film Festivals.

Multi awarded actor Cesar Montano stars as Jose Rizal, who was able to give justice to our National Hero as he played the role perfectly. Other equally good actors and actresses like Joel Torre, Gloria Diaz, Chin Chin Gutierez, Monique Wilson and many others who contributed to the making of the film truly spectacular.

For those who have not seen this film, now is your chance to watch the most talked-about film of cultural and historical significance to Filipinos. It is high time to celebrate the sesquicentennial birth anniversary of our national hero by enjoying the movie. For those who have seen it before, it would be an opportune time to refresh your memories and still enjoy this once in a life time movie masterpiece.

The movie is planned to be shown in various major cities such as Sydney, Canberra, Perth, Melbourne in

Australia and in Auckland and Willington in New Zealand. In Sydney it will be shown at Max Weber Function centre on Saturday, July 2 starting at 7:00PM.  Other cities will come up with their venues and dates later.

Jose Rizal bust at Central Station, Sydney

  Photo: Bust of Jose Rizal near Central Station, Sydney.

Another way of commemorating this momentous occasion is to come up with a play regarding the life, love and sacrifices of Dr Jose Rizal. At present there is a plan to stage “Junto al Pasig”, a short play written by our national hero himself. Rehearsals will start soon and the play will be finalised before the year ends.

Other organisations, groups and community leaders are encouraged to come up with their own activities in order to spread the ideals, teaching and exemplary life of our national hero and create awareness, especially among the youth.

Meanwhile, flower offerings at the statue or bust of Dr Jose Rizal located in various government offices and parks are expected to take place on Sunday, June 19, on a worldwide basis by government officials, Order of the Knights of Rizal members, Filipino community leaders and the whole community at large.

Symposia and other information programs are also planned before the year ends.

For more information about the Order of the Knights of Rizal, call Sir Philip Ranoso, KCR Sydney Chapter Commander on mob 0404-056-141 or Sir Nestor Jongko, KCR Perth Chapter Commander on mob 0413-704-016  or Sir Ric de Vera, KCR Regional Commander for ANZO on mob 0414-790-880. More information is also available at

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