Creative Industries Month to witness ‘the grandest battle of creativity’

The buzzwords this month and until November are “creativity” and “creative industries.”

September has been declared the “Creative Industries Month” by the Philippine government, and one reason for such declaration is the activation of the law known as Philippine Creative Industries Development Act, or Republic Act 11904.

Pangasinan 4th District Representative Toff de Venecia is the principal author of the law, the chairman of the House Special Committee on Creative Industry and Performing Arts.

De Venecia’s clan on his mother’s side used to be entrenched in film production. He is a son of Gina Vera-Perez De Venecia, daughter of Dr. Jose Vera Perez, the patriarch of pioneering film companies Sampaguita Pictures and Vera Perez Productions.

Before he joined Pangasinan politics as son of former senator Jose De Venecia, Toff was active in theater, all the way back to his schooldays at the Ateneo de Manila.

Sen. Loren Legarda, aside from being Senate President Pro-Tempore, is chair of the Senate committee on culture and the arts. For years a top broadcast journalist at ABS-CBN, Legarda is the principal author of Republic Act 11961, also known as the Cultural Mapping Law.

ODANG Putik Pottery held workshops on basic pottery. | PHOTOGRAPH COURTESY OF IG/ ODANGPUTIKPOTTERY

National competition

DTI has announced that it will launch on 24 September a national competition, Young Creatives Challenge (YC2) “through the support of Sen. Imee Marcos.”

The competition — described as “the grandest battle of creativity” in the country with a grand prize of P1 million per category — “aspires to ignite, acknowledge, and spotlight the brilliance of creative minds… in the fields of Songwriting, Screenwriting, Playwriting, Graphic Novel, Animation, Game Development, and Online Content Creation.”

The semi-finals are set for October 2023, when the Top 30 creators and the Top 10 Grand Finalists will be revealed.

At the grand finals on November 2023, cash prizes will be awarded along with millions’ worth of promotions, incentives, registration of intellectual property and possible production or commercialization of creative works.

The competition has an Online Content Challenge with distinct mechanics and a separate prize pool. It offers a platform for content creators to showcase their talents and make a significant impact by raising awareness about the vibrant and dynamic Philippine creative industries. The special category will have TikTok as its main channel for entry submission.

The DTI invites all natural-born Filipino citizens aged 18-35, regardless of their level of experience, to participate as either individuals or teams.

Entrants are required to submit “entirely original creations.”

The competition theme is deliberately broad, embracing an “open” and “free subject” approach to allow the participants the creative freedom to delve into any topic or subject matter of their choosing.

For more information about the competition, visit

Capsule workshops

On 17 September, the NCCA launched the Creative Industries Month at the Rizal Park Open Air Auditorium in Manila with creative capsule workshops in the afternoon and a grand concert of songs, dances and puppetry in the evening. The festivities had the full support of the National Parks Development Committee and Concert at the Park.

The workshops were anchored on various creative industries in the country. For instance, for the audiovisual media domain, the Knowledge Channel Foundation Inc. conducted an introductory workshop on Learning Filipino through Wikaharian.

For the digital interactive media domain, Dr. Albert Mulles of METATOKYO tackled “How to Start Your Own Blockchain Game Project” while the Department of Science and Technology presented “Learning Through Minecraft Exhibit.”

Under the Design domain, there were workshops on shoemaking, parol and jewelry-making and T-shirt printing Workshop. Under publishing and printed media, Rustico Limosinero offered a basic comics workshop, while the Barasoain Kalinangan Foundation, Inc. discussed book- selling and exhibits.

Composer-singer Joey Ayala, meanwhile, held a Songwriting Workshop under the Performing Arts domain and later, at the concert, performed the finale solo vocal numbers.

Nanding Josef, artistic director of the Cultural Center of the Philippines’ Tanghalang Pilipino, conducted a capsule workshop on Theater Acting. Also within the Performing Arts domain were the dance and puppetry workshops facilitated by the Samahan ng mga Papetir ng Pilipinas.

The other domains that presented workshops included the visual arts, traditional cultural expression and cultural sites.

Aside from Ayala, the evening concert featured Noel Cabangon, the revived band Color It Red with Cookie Chua still its lead vocalist, Bayang Barrios and her band, the Sindaw Philippines dance troupe, Halili Cruz Dance Company, Teatro ni Juan and a puppetry group.


In his remarks, De Venecia pointed out that there are more than 7 million people in the Philippines employed in the creative industries, and the industries’ contribution to Gross Domestic Product in 2022 was 7.3 percent percent or P1. 6 trillion, representing an increase of 12.1 percent from P1. 43 trillion in 2021.

“This is a sector that has managed to survive and even thrive on its own, but with institutionalized support from the state, it will really help the creative industry sector grow and accelerate to the point where we want it to be — which is by 2030, the Philippines will be the number one creative economy in all of Asia,” said De Venecia.

May we be really number 1 just seven years from today!