"Maya's Hope" helps out orphaned children in Ukraine and the Philippines, and they could use your help.   The power of 140 characters or less is pretty amazing. It was a simple tweet that led us to interacting with Maya Rowencak, Founder of Maya's Hope right here in New York. A non-profit charitable organization, Rowencak began her work to help out orphaned children who live in poverty in the Philippines and Ukraine. We published a press release last week for the organization's "Glitter" event, which is a fundraising effort to support their projects with the kids, and I began to have a dialogue with Maya herself to find out more about why she started this venture, and how they have fared so far. [slideshow id = 65] For the record, when was Maya's Hope founded? November 2010. It is an...
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Always on the move, Helenna Santos-Levy is the epitome of "a Lifer" in the Entertainment business Not everyone is blessed with versatility and talent. But, without a hard work ethic, neither of those things would matter, anyway. Our Artist Spotlight this month is on Ms. Helenna Santos-Levy, who is both versatile and talented. She is also always on the grind, as proven by all the things on her job description. She is a singer, an actress, a producer, a writer/vlogger, and that's just scraping the surface. She is also a bubbly personality and awesomely full of life, and she speaks with us about life as a performing artist in Los Angeles, CA.   Hi Helenna! Thank you very much for speaking with us. You're actually the first Filipino actress we’ve ever interviewed for Wika. We'll be starting off with the basic...
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From the makers of "2 Unemployed Critics" comes a new comedy short. You guys know our own Ms. Richgail Enriquez, better known as Astig Vegan. The multi-talented food writer and recipe developer is also the beautiful brain behind RCE Studios. As RG would describe the new series on her website, '...“30 Something“, (sic) was my satirical take on women in their 30s (or people in their 30s in general) who feel stuck between trying to figure out their passions in life and facing the pressures of starting a family.' And so, without further ado, check out 30 Something after the jump.   30 Something (Woes of People in Their 30s) - An Original Short by Richgail Enriquez For more, check out the RCE Studios YouTube Page #McGyverWaxing!
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Our Exclusive Interview with Manny Pacquiao at his home in General Santos City, Philippines   Redemption is on the table. With less than 20 days before his match against Brandon Rios, the People’s Champion Manny Pacquiao sat down with the WikaMag team after his routine training session for an exclusive interview. We flew to the Champ’s hometown in Southern Philippines, General Santos City, where he is currently training at his very own Wild Card Gym. We waited for the Champ at the “Bulwagan” (receiving area) of his mansion, and he warmly welcomed us into his home for a quick glimpse of his day while he is training mode for the big fight. After the very controversial loss against Juan Manuel Marquez last December 2012, Pacquiao said he was busy doing his Congressional duties. Currently on his 2nd term as Representative...
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Wika TV Correspondent Jenn Sorika Covers the Typhoon Haiyan Fundraiser at Jeepney NYC Interviews: Nicole Ponseca Miguel Trinidad Jose Antonio Vargas Kristine Johnson Ryan Letada Renee Rogoff (Related: Photo Gallery From Event)
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"2 Unemployed Critics" is a humorous dialogue between a duo of Filipino Film enthusiasts It's the Pinoy Siskel and Ebert-with a comedic twist. "2 Unemployed Critics" is about two guys, Allan and Chuck, who couldn't keep a job because they talk about movies way too darn much. But Allan and Chuck don't get in trouble over just any flicks, they argue over indie Filipino movies. The web series is the first project of RCE Studios, a YouTube production company aiming to put global Filipinos to the spotlight. 2UC's pilot episode features two indie films that have made a big impact in the global indie circuit: "Amigo" by John Sayles and "The Woman in the Septic Tank" by Marlon Rivera. Instead of a thumbs up or thumbs down, Allan and Chuck rate the movies using a Barrel man, a popular souvenir...
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We had a photo shoot scheduled, so picked up Ralph after brunch. He was waiting somewhere on 50th St. in Queens. Ralph jumps in the car. 'Anong balita (what's new)?' "Eto," replies Ralph, as if to say 'same old.' "Naglalaba pa nga ako eh (I was still doing laundry when you got me)." (Laughs) I had never met him before, but right off the bat, I already thought he was one of, if not, the humblest of people that I have ever met. But his quiet persona should not be mistaken for apathy, meekness or naïveté. This 25-year old tattoo artist is as passionate as they come, constantly chasing perfection. An already seasoned veteran, Ralph Perez is quietly building a reputation for himself among Filipinos as one of the best local tattooists around. We talked about how he started, and some of the experiences from his...
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Rosendo Pili, a.k.a. MUGSHOT shows his funnier side, talking about his childhood in Queens, life as one of the more recognized Filipino Emcees in the country, and perhaps being the Filipino version of 'Drake.'  **On that last part, not really.   As the 7 train thundered past above, we waited on the corner of 69th and Roosevelt in front of Krystal's Cafe. It was a bright and gorgeous Sunday in Queens, and the first signs of warm spring weather had arrived. I tried to picture the dialogue I was about to participate in. Back in November, we published a press release on the well-known hip-hop group around Queens - Deep Foundation, and more specifically, on the man we were about to meet. Through DF's music videos, I had envisioned a rugged persona, which was the perfect way to deliver the messages...
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Mary and Michelle Mangiliman, sisters and owners of Dalaga NYC, took some time to chat with Wika Magazine about their Filipino roots, their experiences in fashion entrepreneurship and life in New York City.  The Mangiliman sisters are becoming a well-known duo in the New York fashion scene. Dalaga has been named  "Brooklyn's #1 Classic Boutique" by Refinery29 and has been given the nod for "Best Dresses" by New York Magazine. Following their huge success in Brooklyn, the opening of their SoHo store last year was met with an line of people down the block waiting to get in. (And, reportedly, in true "Dalaga" fashion, the sisters handed out cupcakes to those who had to wait.) With two thriving stores under their belts, these ladies are making moves you don’t want to miss. Be sure to check out their new Spring arrivals at either store,...
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Wika Mag - Part II with Rich: More on creative processes, creating Art - with words and without, the “Filipino” Perspective, and the state of New York’s Creative Movement. (To re-visit Part 1, click here.)   More often than not, what is your process when your work calls to be presented without the use of words – this for someone who is a Communications Major, I assume there must be a challenge there?  “For one thing, I think (in regards to creating) with words – I know I’m influenced by comic books. It’s just something I grew up with. So the idea of having words accompanying an image isn’t crazy to me. Of course, I only do that when it adds to the piece, and it’s not extraneous. “From the onset, there really is no reason to (go one way or another)....
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It is a hot summer day in late July, and he was in a sweater. "I was coming from a meeting," Rich said. "I had another interview earlier today." We were at the Standard, chatting over drinks and paella. Life is good, especially when you get to hang out with one of the more creative people in town. New York City is the global center for innovation, visualization and aesthetics, and we were able to speak with one of the blossoming talents the city had to offer. He is also a friend of the program, and we were all too happy to see him. An alum of Rutgers University in New Brunswick, and later with the School of Visual Arts, Rich Tu has quickly built a reputation for himself as one of New York's more credible graphic designers. With an already impressive résumé...
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[slideshow id = 42] West Broadway (in the SoHo district of downtown Manhattan) is always bustling with pedestrians, especially on weekends. And as such, it is a haven for artists and vendors who sell their goods curbside all year round. For the most part, a lot of art sold on the street in and around SoHo tend to be generic and rather hackneyed. But once in a while, an artist will come along and break the monotony. On Saturday, as I was walking down West Broadway, I noticed a kid sitting on a folding chair next to a table of guns splattered with paint at the corner of Prince Street and West Broadway. At first glance, I thought he was just peddling the same Pollock-esque paintings that I've seen dozens of times before, so I kept walking. I don’t know...
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We arrived at TALDE in Brooklyn, where all was still quiet on a Wednesday afternoon. It was a few hours before service. I could see Dale from the window, engaged in a conversation with his business partner, David Massoni, phone in hand, and scribbling furiously at a pad. The interior is impressive. It is reminiscent of an old Philippine house, like a modernized 1800's ancestral home. Wooden furniture and wide windows. The bar is a welcome sight and is the first thing you see as soon as you walk in. The restaurant itself feels very homey. "You guys can set up in the back," he motioned to us. "I'm just finishing up here." After he and Mr. Massoni were done with their conference call, Dale walked toward over. "Hi guys, I'm Dale." He shook everyone's hand, and much to my...
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In a city where bagels and coffee rule, a group named MuffinMilk NYC is daring to take over. Not too many 15 year-olds translate imagination into money-worthy ideas, but three high school friends collaborated in 2008, only to stumble into what is now a New York based urban streetwear company. As the "accidental" brainchild of CEO Gary Haze, the humble endeavor of printing 50 shirts to give away back in high school five years ago went from a simple day of just wanting to make a statement, to all of a sudden becoming the birth of an ultra-competitive, message-driven, and completely fan-centric urban clothing line. And right by his side are his two most trusted friends, Steven Gordon and Courtland Hui. We met with Gary, who was accompanied by associate Tyler Blake. A warm and toasty cafe in the Lower East Side called Table...
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