The Birth of Cerrudo: Classico

In mid 2005, I came to a crossroads in my then 19-year long career and was desiring for some changes to be made – I was in search of a deeper sense of fulfillment, both personal and artistic. It was through the series that I found just the kind of changes I was seeking. During the course of the series’ first year run, I realized I wanted to make the rest of my performing years more meaningful by doing my share in helping out worthy causes and projects – from the elderly to the unborn, from animals to the environment. And on the artistic front,

it was also during this time that I realized I was longing for a return to my musical roots – my roots in classical music and musical theater. Combining these two gave birth to CERRUDO:Classico, which would subsequently become the annual series’ main title.

The series kicked off with a 4-pc string ensemble accompanying me on August 4, 2005 at the Quisine in 6750 Ayala Avenue, Makati City. Originally intended to run for only eight Thursdays, the “dinner concert series for a cause” completed a very successful 17-show run. Due to the overwhelming response to the project and requests for more of its kind, we were encouraged to bring the series to provincial cities so as to be able to reach out to even more people. In February 2006, Cerrudo: Classico (The Provincial Tour) commenced in Iloilo City.

In 2006, “Cerrudo: Classico … Classic Ko”, this time with a 14-pc ensemble from the Manila Philharmonic Orchestra backing me up, ran weekly at the Teatrino in Greenhills from July through December. That same year, the series went international, as we took the shows to Sydney, Canberra, and Melbourne, Australia.

2007 was the year for “Cerrudo Classico: Songs From Stage And Screen”, again at the Teatrino from August through March of 2008. And in August 2008, the series moved to the Captain’s Bar of Mandarin Oriental via the staging of Cerrudo Classico: Love Around The World” from August through November, with repeats in March and April of 2009. Also in 2009, the show was brought to Papua New Guinea, to entertain both the locals and the Australian and Asian expats based there.

2010 promises to be another banner year for Cerrudo: Classico as the series returns to Teatrino with “Words And Music”, with the same winning team – direk Freddie Santos, Maestro Rodel Colmenar, and the Manila Philharmonic Orchestra rhythm ensemble -- that gave the series the success it now enjoys.