Hajji Alejandro, Marco Sison and Nonoy Zuniga.
Three of the Philippines’ biggest names in the entertainment industry brought an evening of nostalgia to Original Pilipino Music (OPM) fans in Edmonton as they performed at the jampacked Southpointe Community Center on Saturday night, September 14.
And it seemed that the absence of two other OPM icons did not lower the excitement of the fans.
Rey Valera could not make it for medical reasons, according to Dr.Nimrod Montano, who co-promoted the concert with Palabok House’s Lydia Jimenez and the absence of Rico Puno, an original member of the touring group, who died of heart failure in October last year, was relived with a tribute by the singers while Puno’s video was played on big screen.
The crowd turned on the flash lights on their smart phones and in unison waved as the songs of the late music icon were sung by the trio.
The Hitmakers started with their solo careers in the 1970s but they’ve grown more popular in the 1980s with their Hitmakers concerts in the Philippines and abroad.
Guest singer Alynna Velasquez from the Filipino TV series “Kadenang Ginto” added color to the night and sang a duet with Hajji.
The OPM Hitmakers wrapped up their concert with the “Manila” song by Filipino band Hotdog, which topped the radio charts in 1984.
Lourdes Abesamis of Edmonton even brought her tatay Don and nanay Lily to the concert.
Liz Jackson of Sherwood Park fetched her friend Ito who flew from Vancouver just to watch the Hitmakers.
Filipinos from Fort McMurray, Calgary and nearby towns drove to Edmonton with their family and friends for the event that was dubbed “OPM Hitmakers: The Final Tour”.
That night had another big event at the River Cree Casino starring Filipino-American comedian Jokoy but it looked like there were more sentimental Pinoys and Pinays at Southpointe where they recalled their own life stories through the songs of Hajji, Marco and Nonoy.
It was indeed an evening of nostalgia.
And that you’ll only experience with the OPM Hitmakers.
Photos by Aris Bravo and Moses Billacura | Alberta Filipino Journal