Some things, seen or experienced separately, are beautiful, and even more beautiful when combined with other elements. For instance, the magical interplay of various colors, we call a rainbow, is created when light hits water droplets. Now, in addition to the combination of light and water, what do we get if we add sound and fire?
We get something nice like the Light and Sound Show at the Rizal Park, formerly Luneta / Bagumbayan, found at the heart of Manila City.
And it’s absolutely free. Luneta is a public park, frequented by families for picnics (and, uhm, lovers who are at home with the anonymity afforded by its vast expanse). The Light and Sound Show, which runs continuously from 7:00 p.m. to 10:00 p.m., is open to the public (even to love birds who presumably care less about the display).
Many are familiar with Luneta as the place where Jose Rizal, the national hero, was executed in 1896. The site, just like adjacent places including the Fort Santiago where he was imprisoned before facing the firing squad, is an integral part of Jose Rizal‘s life.
It’s the premier public park in the Philippines, although the usual visitor, like us or even foreign dignitaries who lay a wreath at the Rizal Monument as a sign of respect, gets to visit and see only the front portion facing Roxas Boulevard. This is where the Rizal Monument is found.
The other half of visitors, a good mix of families and love birds, know Rizal Park as a picnic place. And there’s the negative perception that Luneta is frequented by the masa and jejemons, which is unfortunate given the significance of the place and quite untrue given the good mix of people that we observed while dropping by to see its latest attraction.
We saw the huge throng of people, concentrated at the vast open space at the back of the Rizal Monument, for the first time last weekend. In the middle of this mass of humanity is the Light and Sound Show.
We’ve seen a number of light and sound shows. There’s one in Sentosa (Songs of the Sea). although one need not go far because there’s now a light and sound show at the Manila Ocean Park (see Magical Fountain Show). These are nice shows, with eye-catching laser effects, accompanying sounds and narration, and short storyline.
These shows naturally charge an entrance fee, of course. The Lights and Sounds Show in Luneta is free.
We all have a rightful expectation that something we pay for should be worth it, and so we have a similar expectation that a show, just like the Lights and Sounds Show in Luneta, is simple and far from spectacular.
But while it’s far from spectacular, it’s not true that it’s lousy. The show at the Rizal Park has the basic ingredients for an interesting sight. The fountains dance with the music. The lights hit the fountains, creating various shapes and texture, adding emotions to the music flow. Fireballs occasionally light up the darkness and put emphasis with explosive sounds.
It is, in short, a show that would provide enough entertainment for the family. Luneta Park is surrounded by establishments that cater to people in vacation (restaurants, hotels, the Manila Ocean Park, among others). It’s a place of historical significance. It’s a place worth visiting. Enjoy.
Right in the heart of Manila City lies a historical site, surrounded by other landmarks of equal historic importance. Intramuros, the Rizal Park and Manila Hotel, just some of the surrounding structures. We’re talking about a venue which followed the name of the Filipino President who first held his inauguration ceremonies therein — the Quirino Grandstand. Right off the bat, before proceeding any further to read the entire article, what comes to your mind when your hear “Quirino Grandstand”? Continue reading The Quirino Grandstand in Manila City→
Monuments are meant to commemorate something of historical importance to a place and its people. I always pass through a monument outside of Intramuros (known as the Anda Circle), fronting the Manila Hotel along Roxas Boulevard, and I wonder who these people are or what the monument is about. A quick search yielded the information that it’s a monument of Spanish conquistador Miguel Lopez de Legazpi and Fr. Andres de Urdaneta, commemorating their landing in the Philippine Islands in 1565. Continue reading Monument of Miguel Lopez de Legazpi and Andres Urdaneta (Intramuros)→
This one should come easy. I mean, Rizal Park (Luneta) was created in honor of the Philippines’ national hero, Dr. Jose Rizal. We’ve studied about his life since grade school (and pre-school) so writing about this Philippine landmark should be easy. Continue reading Rizal Park (Luneta) in Manila City→
It’s ironic that in the countless times I’ve been to the Calamba municipal hall, just beside Jose Rizal’s place of birth, I never dropped by. Maybe because it’s weird for a grown-up to visit a place that should have been toured while in elementary or high school. Continue reading Jose Rizal Birthplace (Calamba, Laguna)→
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