Íkami (About Us)
In 2016, Joy Táyag-Lansang Cruz, head of the Arts, Culture and Heritage Division of the Angeles City Tourism Office (ACTO) invited Mike Pángilinan, Talasínup king Singsing (Keeper of Heritage) to hold lectures and seminars on the Kapampángan language, philosophy, culture, history, heritage, and the indigenous script known as Kulitan.
With the lectures becoming quite popular, ACTO can no longer accommodate the increasing demand and the growing number of students. Thus, Herminia Pámintuan, the Mother of Kapampángan Cultural and Linguistic Revival of Angeles City, began to look for a permanent place for Pángilínan to conduct his lectures regularly.
With the help of ACTO, Atching Miniang, as Herminia Pámintuan is fondly called, inaugurated the Sídduan ning Kabiasnan Kapampángan at Pámanigáral Kulitan (Institute for Kapampángan Research and Kulitan Studies) on 2016 October 1 at the third floor of the city library where Mike Pángilínan can finally conduct his regular lectures on the Kapampángan culture. The inauguration was marked by an art exhibition and a ritual performance by the Ágúman Súlat Kapampángan and Norman Tiotuico, a multi-awarded Kapampángan artist. Many of these artworks became the permanent display at the institute. The inauguration also signaled the start of the 2016 Fiestang Kuliat.
Basic and advanced Kulitan classes were part of the free curriculum. Later on, a monthly session on Kulitan calligraphy was also conducted by Norman Tiotuico. Tiotuico also featured several Kapampángan artists as speakers on his monthly discussion forum on Kapampángan Art, titled Pámandúlap, that ran from September 2017 till May 2018. They included a number of great names in Kapampángans arts and culture, namely Andy Alviz of ArtiSta.Rita, internationally renowned Kapampángan chefs Claude Táyag and Sau del Rosario, musician Titus del Rosario, Kapampángan dance master Peter de Vera, bonsai artist Bong de Luna, philosopher and educator Ave Laquindanum, and Kapampángan lyricist, translator and composer Cris Cadiang,
National and international scholars also began to conduct lectures and forums at the Sídduan ning Kabiasnan Kapampángan at Pámanigáral Kulitan. These included archaeologist Dr. Bong Dizon of the National Museum, Ian Alfonso of the National Historical Commission, Lily Mendoza of Oakland University in Michigan and Richard Aquino of the Auckland University of Technology. Regular international guest lecturers include linguist Kevin Bätscher of the University of Hawaii, geographer JC Gaillard of Auckland University and history vlogger Kirby Araullo of the University of California-Davis.
The Sídduan ning Kabiasnan Kapampángan at Pámanigáral Kulitan was also instrumental in helping Angeles City councilors Amos Rivera and Edu Pámintuan draft the Local Language Code that pushed for the establishment of the Kapampángan language as an official language of Ángeles City. It was finally passed as Ordinance No. 424, s. 2017 in 2017 November 23.
Almost a year after the passing of Ordinance No. 424, s.2017 that institutionalised Kapampángan as an official language of Angeles City, an implementing body was yet to be organised. In August 2018, Councilor Amos Rivera urged ACTO to merged its Arts, Culture and Heritage Division with the Sídduan ning Kabiasnang Kapampángan at Pámanigáral Kulitan to serve as the implementing body. The Sídduan ning Ámánang Kabiasnang Kapampángan (Institute for Kapampángan Cultural Heritage) became the result of this merger. Its purpose was to oversee the implementation of the local language code as well as continue with the original purpose and functions of these two groups with regards to Kapampángan language, philosophy, history, culture and arts. The team now includes Kapampángan language activist, Edwin Camaya, who is currently drafting the implementing rules and guidelines of the said ordinance.
In 2018 March 7, Ron Golimlim of the Widus Foundation met with Mike Pángilínan and the Angeles City Librarian, Mila Narsing. Widus Foundation wanted to establish a cultural heritage hub for the Kapampángan people at the Angeles City Library and Information Center. It was a perfect match for the then Sídduan ning Kabiasnang Kapampángan and Pámanigáral Kulitan. While negotiations were going on with the Widus Foundation, the Sídduan ning Kabiasnan Kapampángan at Pámanigáral Kulitan was merged with ACTO’s Arts, Culture and Heritage Division to form the Sídduan ning Ámánang Kabiasnang Kapampángan in August of 2018. The merger further encouraged Widus Foundation to build and equip a permanent space where this new body could work efficiently on Kapampángan language, culture, history and the arts so as to effectively serve the greater Kapampángan community. The SÍNÚPAN SINGSING (Center for Kapampángan Cultural Heritage) was finally established through the partnership of Widus Foundation and the City Government of Ángeles in 2018 September 3. Construction is currently under way at the second floor of the Angeles City Library and Information Center.
The Sínúpan Singsing: Center for Kapampángan Cultural Heritage stands as a testament to the commitment and aspirations of Angeles City’s culture bearers and advocates, together with the local government, the Widus Foundation Incorporated, and various stakeholders, as they aim to passionately safeguard and promote the rich Kapampángan culture – it’s language, history and heritage – through research and development.