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TOFIL Awardee

Onofre R. Pagsanghan
TOFIL Awardee for Culture and Arts, 1996


Onofre Pagsanghan, is best known as the founder and managing director of Dulaang Sibol, the Ateneo High School’s drama group founded in 1966. With the Dulaang Sibol, Pagsanghan espouses educational theater to develop not just good actors but good men; men with purpose, men who live by the teachings of Christ; men of integrity; men of service to others. His influence in each Ateneo High School generation has been so profound that the young men he has guided have gone on and become highly respected achievers in their own fields.

His work in Dulaang Sibol has attracted national recognition. As critic and National Artist Leonor Orosa Goquingco puts it, Dulaang Sibol is high school theater with “professional polish.” For this theater group he has translated great works from other countries into Filipino such as Jean Annouilh’s Antigone, adopted Thornton Wider’s Our Town into “Doon Po sa Amin” and J.M. Barrie’s Dear Brutus into “Wala sa Ating mga Bituin”.  “Sinta”, his adaptation of Tom Jones’ The Fantasticks is one of the longest running plays in Philippine theater history.

He has likewise pioneered in incorporating musical competitions in the study of Filipino to stimulate greater creativity in and love for the national language. The now nationally famous “Hindi Kita Malilimutan” is the musical composition of a first year student of his, Manoling Francisco; the lyrics of the song are the fruits of the collaboration of Pagsanghan and his first year class.

Pagsanghan had been Chairman of the Filipino Department for 25 years and served as member of the university’s Board of Trustees for three years.


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