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By JASER A. MARASIGANFebruary 6, 2011, 11:24am
MANILA, Philippines – Actor Piolo Pascual can add this item to his curriculum vitae: UST's quadricentennial model.
Indeed, the fact that he was chosen as one of the models for the life-size sculpture QuattroMondial to commemorate the 400th anniversary of the University of Santo Tomas (UST) is a new feat for Piolo.
The dramatic 10-meter high monument is rendered by internationally-acclaimed sculptor Ramon Orlina, also a Thomasian.
Immortalized in bronze, and Orlina’s trademark glass, the hunk actor's statue represents the male students of UST symbolizing “excellence”.
QuattroMondial also features three other figures patterned after the images of Monina Orlina, the sculptor’s daughter, representing the Filipina student-tradition; beauty queen Charlene Gonzales, representing Thomasian teacher-erudition; and UST president Fr. Rolando V. dela Rosa, O.P. representing Dominican friar-spirituality.
Talks are rife however that among the four models, only actor Piolo Pascual did not graduate from UST. So, why Piolo?
Orlina admits that Piolo was a personal choice. “The models were chosen by me and not UST,” he corrects.
He explains that Piolo possesses the features he was looking for in making the sculpture. “He has the physical qualities and stature needed for such an important work, and he is easily recognized by everyone. It does not matter that Piolo did not graduate from UST, the fact that he studied in UST is enough to make him belong there,” he adds.
Piolo took up BA Sociology at the Faculty of Arts and Letters. He was also active in the theater group Teatro Tomasino. He however failed to earn his degree when his family had to moved to the United States.
“It might interest you to know that our National Artist F. Sionil Jose was given the ‘Total Award of UST’ and yet he did not also graduate from there. The University clearly recognizes the achievements of their students regardless of whether they completed their studies there,” Orlina further says.
INSPIRED BY OBLATION
UST gave Orlina the free hand to design the sculpture and choose the models. He admits that the Oblation of the University of the Philippines (UP), in a way, influenced his decision in choosing Piolo.
“When I was conceptualizing the design of the sculpture, I knew I needed models for the four human figures featured in the work. UST, to their credit, gave me a free hand in the design and they approved it after I presented the maquette and defended it before the Board of Regents. I made some research on whic personalities I wanted to use for my models and I have to admit that the Oblation by our National Artist Guillermo Tolentino did have an influence on me. Tolentino apparently used Fernando Poe, Sr. as his model. The model should have a good physique which Piolo undoubtedly has.”
Orlina likewise recognizes Piolo’s achievements in the entertainment industry. “His achievements are many as an actor, recording artist, and model. And in his interviews he always says that he is grateful for his stay in UST as a student.”
Orlina says that Piolo was a very cooperative subject, enduring the demanding modeling schedule. The final result perfectly captured the body structure of Piolo and even the actor’s distinctive mole on his left chin is represented.
The artist considered other personalities as subjects, but Piolo and Charlene Gonzales had been his top choices from the start. “There were others but I easily came to my decision on these two.” Charlene graduated with a pre-med degree from the College of Science and was a member of her college’s varsity volleyball team.
Orlina handpicked Charlene because apart from being a UST alumna, she has, “the beauty, the talent, the stature and the wholesome image to serve as a role model to the UST community.”
Orlina had to shuttle between Manila and Thailand while working on the statue because the raw material for the QuattroMondial was mostly available in Thailand.
QuattroMondial, he describes, is first a physical structure and second, a statement that speaks of the University and its character.
The statue shows a globe tilted at 23.5 degrees, perpetually facing the North Star, apparently resting on the four figures. Similarly, the University has served as a beacon both to its educators and students as they find their way spiritually, intellectually and socially.
According to Orlina, the globe represents globalization, with all its benefits and hindrances, such as environmental degradation, and cultural divisions. The ribbon with an inscription in Latin, signifying accomplishment, scholarliness and wisdom, streams out of the globe.
The “QuattroMondial” was formally unveiled at the UST Quadricentennial Park last January 27 highlighting its 400th anniversary celebrations
Great TV and Movie Characters Portrayed by Piolo Pascual
1. JULES BARTOLOME
Movie: Dekada '70 (2002)
Who can forget Piolo's heartwrenching portrayal of Amanda's (Vilma Santos) eldest son in this film version of Lualhati Bautista's Dekada '70? Piolo's character, Jules, is tortured--cue the infamous scene where Piolo lies naked on a giant block of ice--for his anti-government efforts. He was so good in this role he got eight Best Supporting Actor awards that year, among them nods from FAMAS, Gawad Urian, and PMPC Star.
(Photo courtesy of Star Cinema)
Movie: Don't Give Up on Us (2006)
Piolo playing a singer with long hair? Yes, please! When this movie was released, Piolo and Judy Ann Santos were at the peak of their love team's popularity. Vince, Piolo's character in the story, might blow hot and cold, but his undeniable charisma--not to mention his captivating singing voice--made us root for him. Plus: Piolo won two Best Actor awards for this role!
(Photo courtesy of Star Cinema)
Movie: Dreamboy (2005)
In this movie, we get not just one, but three Piolos! It might sound unbelievable, but that's exactly how many gorgeous hunks Cyd (Bea Alonzo) meets in the story, with Piolo taking on a different character (but with the same physical features) each time. No matter which character Piolo was playing on screen, though, we were similarly smitten.
(Photo courtesy of Star Cinema)
4. NOAH ORTEGA
TV show: Lobo (2008)
In the show that could have possibly begun the wolf-vampire TV craze in the country, Piolo played Noah, a human soldier and a bodyguard known for his speed and combat skills. We loved his msyterious, brooding persona (besides, doesn't everyone love a man in uniform?). The fact that his scenes with Angel Locsin, who played wolf Lyka Ortega, just sizzled with chemistry was just one of many other reasons Piolo's portrayal was a triumph in this series.
(Photo courtesy of ABS-CBN)
Movie: Love Me Again (2009)
If you love yourself some sweaty, tanned Piolo working with horses in a field, you'll understand why we put this role on our list! In ths movie, Piolo plays a hardworking man who owns a ranch and dreams of being successful without leaving Bukidnon. He eventually ends up going to Australia--where his first love, Arah (Angel Locsin), is--in an effort to chase after his dreams.
(Photo courtesy of Star Cinema)
Movie: Milan (2004)
Don't let the breathtaking scenery (the film was shot in Italy) distract you from Piolo in this movie. In Milan, Piolo's character, Lino, finds himself falling for another woman (Claudine Barretto) as he searches for his missing wife. While the story, which also delves into the plight of Filipino immigrant workers, might get confusing at times, seeing Piolo portray different sides to his character (from romantic to angry and angsty) was a treat for the eyes.
TV series: Sa Piling Mo (2006)
Piolo got to test his acting abilities in this dramatic TV series, in which he played Adrian, a blind man all set to marry his childhood sweetheart, Jennifer (Judy Ann Santos), before fate tore them apart. Both Judy Ann and Piolo delivered brilliant performances in this soap, and we couldn't help feeling for Adrian as he fell in love with another woman, not knowing that his first love was right there in front of him.
(Poster courtesy of ABS-CBN)
8. JORDAN VILLAMINES
TV series: Sa Puso Ko Iingatan Ka (2001)
Piolo is in perfect kilig-inducing form in this soap, which cemented his and Judy Ann's love team in local showbiz. But the series wasn't all about squeal-worthy moments; we cried buckets as obstacle after obstacle chased Jordan and Patricia all throughout the series. Nevertheless, Piolo and Juday kept us rooting for them until the very end.
(Screencap courtesy of ABS-CBN)
9. ALBERT ROBLES
Movie: Till There Was You (2003)
Fatherhood never looked so gorgeous before Piolo started playing daddy roles. In this movie, he portrayed single dad Albert, a no-nonsense lawyer with a soft spot for his daughter, Pippa. We loved watching him and Judy Ann Santos, who plays Joanna Boborol, exchanging witty banter and getting themselves into and out of hilarious situations, thanks to a plot twist that had Pippa mistaking Joanna for her mom.
TV show: Esperanza (1998-1999)
Brian might not be Esperanza's (Judy Ann Santos) leading man in this soap, but Piolo captivated our hearts with his portrayal of this character. Brian initially wooed Esperanza as a favor for his lover, the villainess Cynthia (Carmina Villaroel), who seeks revenge against Esperanza's family because she's their dad's illegitimate daughter. What no one counts on--least of all Brian--is having him fall in love with Esperanza for real!
(Screencap via YouTube)
11. Alfred Valderama
TV show: Dahil Sa Pag-Ibig (2012)
In the most awaited teleserye of Primetime bida, Dahil sa Pag-Ibig, Piolo plays Alfred Valderama, who out of his tragic past brought himself closer to God and seek priesthood but falls in love with his sister, the daughter of Leo Valderama, who adopted him.
12. Leo Dimalanta
Movie: Every Breath U Take (2012)
Piolo plays the role of Leo who will fall in love with Angelica's character named Majoy.