Composer of Baguio march recognized

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BAGUIO CITY  – The city government recognized and commended Ms. Basilisa Cachero Pimentel of SLU-SVP Housing Project Barangay for her composition of the “Beautiful Baguio” later adopted and declared as the city’s official Baguio march and for other notable musical works such as the Philippine Government Retirees Association (PGRA) national hymn, the Bakakeng Holy Family Parish vision-mission hymn and the SLU-SVP Housing Cooperative hymn.

Pimentel, 85, started as a classroom teacher at the Bonifacio Elementary School and Guisad Valley National High School from 1957 to 1970. She was also assigned as a girl scout leader of the school where she worked.

In 1962, she received a certificate of proficiency from the 1st National Leadership Training in Music held in the city. In 1968-1969, she was granted a scholarship in music at the University of the Philippines by the then Department of Education and Culture.

In 1971, Pimentel was appointed General Education Supervisor I for Music in the city and as a music supervisor, she conducted workshops and seminars on the techniques of music teaching among others. She also encouraged the elementary and high schools in the city to organize choral groups and inspired them to participate in choral competitions at the regional and national levels.

Resolution No. 074, series of 2015 cited Pimentel’s efforts resulted to the remarkable performances of the Baguio choral groups and earned her various certificates of awards of merit, including one from the Cultural Center of the Philippines (CCP) in 1983.

In 1984, a contest was held for the writing of a Baguio song on the occasion of the Diamond Jubilee celebration of the city in September. One of the two compositions in symmetry with the celebration was the entry composed of Ms. Pimentel entitled “Beautiful Baguio.”

The resolution authored by Councilor Betty Lourdes F. Tabanda cited the composition, which later become the Baguio march, was adopted and declared as the official march by the city through Ordinance No. 052, series of 1993, together with the Baguio hymn.

The resolution of commendation cited in recognition of Ms. Pimentel’s pioneering contribution, she was conferred a Centennial Builder citation by the city government and the Baguio Centennial Commission during the awarding program of ‘Baguio’s 100 Years and WOW Philippines, Cordillera’s Best.’

The citation was an attribute to her role in the transformation of the city from a mountain station to a premier urban center north of Manila.

Other hymns composed by Ms. Pimentel include the PGRA Hymn which was eventually adopted as the group’s national hymn. Her other compositions include the Bakakeng Holy Family Parish vision-mission hymn and the SLU-SVP Housing Cooperative Hymn.

“Ms. Pimentel’s passion for music captured the picturesque City of Baguio in a melody of arts immortalized in Baguio march, woven with the city’s history and impress with the peoples unity and pride,” the resolution stated.

Pimentel, a retired teacher, music supervisor and composer, is married to Mr. Orlando C. Pimentel, the former chief of the accountable form section of the Baguio City Treasury Office.

For her part, Pimentel, who graced regular flag-raising rites to personally receive the aforesaid resolution, expressed her gratitude to the city’s officialdom for the recognition and commendation, citing that she was stunned by the efforts of local officials to give the recognition to her.

“My family is honoured by the recognition and we are optimistic that my work will serve as an inspiration to today’s youth to embrace music as their way of life in order for them to climb the ladder of success,” Ms. Pimentel told the thousands of city government employees who attended the flag-raising rites.

By Dexter A. See