A celebration of the Kundiman with classic and contemporary interpretations by renown ...


Presented By:

Cultural Center of the Philippines
through the CCP Office of the President Outreach Program, “Sining Sigla”


To be streamed online for free


Premiere Episode: September 25, 2021 | 6:00 PM via the CCP and CCP Office of the President Facebook Pages


KUNG HINDI MAN is a new online series that celebrates the ideals of the Filipino Kundiman. Each episode features well-known and acclaimed Filipino artists in performances of songs that trace the evolution of the kundiman, from its beginnings as a traditional love song, to its elevated form as a Filipino art song, and to the more contemporary interpretations of the genre. The show will air from September to December 2021.

For its premiere episode, KUNG HINDI MAN features international Filipino bel canto tenor Arthur Espiritu and soprano Nerissa de Juan. Tenor Arthur Espiritu performs the classic love ballad “Nahan” by National Artists Ernani Cuenco and Levi Celerio, with Mariel Ilusorio on the piano. Soprano Nerissa de Juan gives her rendition of “Ako’y Pilipino” by Filipino classical composer Felipe Padilla De Leon.

KUNG HINDI MAN is written and directed by Dennis Marasigan and produced by the Cultural Center of the Philippines – Office of the President under “Sining Sigla” Program of President Arsenio J. Lizaso. Sining Sigla is a season-long campaign, featuring art programs that aims to provide the public culturally-relevant contents online. For updates and more information, please follow the CCP Office of the President on Facebook.


Arthur Espiritu, tenor

Arthur Espiritu was born in Morong, Rizal, Philippines, then immigrated to the United States. He is praised for his beautiful lyric voice with agility and color, capable of conveying a broad range of characters. Described as singing “superbly with beautiful legato, a regal tenor,” Mr. Espiritu has been steadily establishing himself as an accomplished Bel canto tenor and has had success with the lyric tenor repertoire as well.

He earned both a BA an MM degree from The University of New Orleans and an Artist Diploma from Oberlin College Conservatory of Music. His teachers are Dr. Raquel Cortina, Dr. Robert C. White Jr. and the late Professor/Pedagog Richard Miller. 

Mr. Espiritu is a winner of the distinguished 2009 George London Award. Furthermore, he received  the  Scala  award  at  the  Belvedere  Competition  in  Vienna; won  top  prizes  in  competitions such as  The Irene Dalis  Competition,  Opera  Birmingham Competition; and placed Second in the Finals of The Metropolitan Opera National Council Auditions. 

He has sung with notable Theaters such as Théâtre des Champs-Élysée, , Santa Fe Opera, Pittsburgh Opera, Royal Opera of Versailles, Brucknerhaus Linz, La Verdi Symphony Orchestra in Milan, Esplanade Concert Hall in Singapore, Berlin Philharmonic Digital Concert hall, Teatro alla Scala in Milan and more.

His recent engagements were FAUST by Gounod Theater St. Gallen, RODOLFO Israeli Opera Tel Aviv, RODOLFO and THE SHEPHERD King Roger Sydney Opera House, DUCA Rigoletto St. Margarethen Summer Festival and concerts as a soloist with the Munich Symphony. In the Philippines, his most recent performance was a reprisal of EDGARDO in Donizetti's Lucia di Lammermoor at the CCP.

Nerissa De Juan, soprano

Nerissa De Juan started her musical training when she joined their church choir at age 9. At the age of 15, she was taught basic vocal techniques by their choir organist and then became a choir soloist shortly after. This led to her pursuance of a Bachelor's Degree in Music, Major in Voice under the tutelage of Prof. Ligaya B.G. Quinitio at the New Era University College of Music (2014-2017). At present, she is continuing her studies in Vocal Performance at the University Of Santo Tomas Conservatory Of Music, training under the tutelage of Prof. Lemuel dela Cruz. She is also a grantee of the Original Pilipino Performing Arts (OPPA) Foundation Scholarship Grant. Credits include: Maria Clara in Felipe Padilla De Leon’s Noli Me Tangere: The Opera (2017 and 2019), Soloist in PPO Sunsets at Makiling (2017), Asia Orchestra Week (Tokyo, Japan, 2018), An Enchanting Baguio Christmas (2019) and Ugnayan sa Tugtugan (2018). She has also participated in masterclasses with Anna Migallos (2015), Nelly Miricioiu-Kirk (2017), Susan Waters (2017 and 2018), and Arthur Espiritu (2018). She was also nominated as Best Female Classical Performer in Aliw Awards 2020 and was a finalist in the 1st Veronica Villaroel International Voice Festival Year 2020.

Mariel Ilusorio, piano

Filipina pianist, Mariel Ilusorio, was educated in The Juilliard School in New Yok, Oberlin Conservatory of Music, Ohio, and the State Academy of Music and Theater in Hannover, Germany. Under the tutelage of Stella Brimo, she won top prizes in piano competitions in the Philippines before continuing her studies overseas. As soloist and chamber musician, she has performed concerts in the US, Germany, France, Switzerland, Italy, South Africa, Zimbabwe, Indonesia, and done several tours in the Philippines. After twenty-six years of living in the U.S., Germany, and South Africa, she has made her home in the Philippines, continuing her teaching and performing career. She teaches in UST Conservatory of Music, St. Scholastica's College of Music, and Philippine High School for the Arts.

Dennis Marasigan

Director. Writer. Lighting Designer. Actor. Producer, Teacher. Learner. Dennis N. Marasigan is an experienced and multi-awarded theater, film and television director, writer, lighting designer, actor, producer, and mentor, who also held key management positions in various institutions and cultural organizations. He graduated BA Theater Arts and Master of Public Administration from the University of the Philippines and served on the faculty of several universities and colleges. He held various positions at the Cultural Center of the Philippines (CCP); and served as Artistic Director of the CCP’s resident theater company, TANGHALANG PILIPINO; President of the Philippine Legitimate Stage Artists Group (PHILSTAGE); and Executive Director of the Movie and Television Review and Classification Board (MTRCB), among others. Through various grants and scholarships, he observed theater and film practices in various countries in Asia, Europe and North America. His films have won awards and citations and selected for international and national film competitions and festivals, including those held in Singapore, Rome, Berlin, and Pesaro, as well as the Cinemalaya Philippine Independent Film Festval, Cinema One Digital Film Festival and the ToFARM Film Festival. He is currently the interim Vice-President of the National Live Events Coalition Philippines, Head of the Theater Arts Program of Meridian International College of Business and Arts (MINT College) and Adviser of the Mapua Tekno Teatro, continuing to mentor young artists while finding time for his creative pursuits in the various media and performing arts