PAGDIRIWANG PHILIPPINE FESTIVAL
Musika at Iba Pa
Music and More at the Mural
Coordinated by Teza Mendoza
June 5, 2022 l 1:00 PM
Celeste Schleiffers, better known as Celeste to Washington live show aficionados, is one of Seattle’s most sought after singers. Celeste has been singing since she was a little girl in Grade 4 back in the Philippines and competed in various amateur singing contests. Moving to the US, singing took a back seat. Wife and mother became her priority. Some would be surprised to know that she actually has a full time day job not as a singer. She is a Seafood Manager at Safeway where she has worked for 13 years with a very good employment record.
As they say, once a performer will always be a performer. After a few years of hibernation, Celeste went back full force and her passion for singing re-emerged. Impressing various audiences, Celeste won Seattle’s Tawag ng Tanghalan at the then known Karaoke Bar KAWAYAN Restaurant & Bar. This paved the way for her new singing role as Seattle’s Filipino Karaoke Diva and launched her on another phase of her singing career. She started doing front acts for various productions of celebrities from the Philippines, among them Gabby Concepcion, Arnel (Pineda), Bamboo and Marcelito Pomoy.
Celeste is also a dancer and danced since she was 18 years old. This prowess showed in her performances as front act/headliner where she incorporates dancing in her acts. She is a certified Retrofitness instructor which accounts for her energetic body movements.
Celeste was featured in Pagdiriwang in the past and her metamorphosis is not really surprising. She has become a total performer.
Don or Lyndon and also known as DONPHI is one of Seattle’s more seasoned performers. He does solos, bands, and DJ at various events, restaurants, karaoke bars and also casinos. He has done front acts for shows in Seattle for performers from the Philippines and other Asian countries. His versatility as singer and musician and his sometimes theatrical performances have made him a favorite of local Asian events.
Don started his musical journey at the Technological University of the Philippines playing upright bass for the Univerity’s rondalla. This was his ticket to perform abroad as a band bass player starting with contracts in Nagoya, Japan and then onto Honolulu, Hawaii. His stints abroad spanned 10 years of band performances. Moving to Washington state, Don joined local Seattle Filipino and Asian bands and performed casinos such as Muckleshoot, Tulalip, Emerald Queen, Clearwater and other very popular Asian establishments. Don’s musical experiences and years molded him into this erratic performer making his shows exciting to watch.
THE SAYOC FAMILY
Tha Sayoc Family rocks and they beam straight out from Metro Manila, Philippines. This six-member family shares their love for music, four of them are featured in their performance at 2022 Pagdiriwang Philippine Festival. Nick, father and head of the family, is a lawyer by profession, but is a businessman at heart with his blues harp always at the ready. Carol, wife, mother, and light of the home, is an active ervant leader of the local community Parish with a penchant for singing. Niel, the eldest, is a commercial pilot. He is quite an accomplished guitarist and a producer on the side. Nian, the youngest in the band, and youngest of the brood, is a business consultant in the energy industry who can churn out mean compositions. Two other members of the family, Nina and Noreen (not included in the performance), are dancers and professionals in their respective careers. The Sayocs, while not regular performers, are always ready at the drop of a pin to share their talents for families and friends. This musical family definitely boasts of their roots in music and the arts. A family that plays together, plays good music together. It is a great pleasure to hear their rendition of Niel Young’s “Harvest Moon.”
Teza Mendoza has been a volunteer of the Pagdiriwang for more than a decade. She started as assistant talent coordinator to Chito Refuerzo for Musika at Iba and later took on the responsibility. With her link to the band network, Teza invited Filipino American performers from all over the Puget Sound area and neighboring states, scouring events and places and showcased them for the live Musika at Iba Pa segment of the Pagdiriwang. For the past two years when Pagdiriwang went virtual, Teza developed and put together the videos to be able to feature and share talents of up and coming FilAM performers in the Puget Sound.
Teza is also a performer. She is a solo singer of different genres, an actress (TV, film and stage), a trained dancer and choreographer, a compugraphics designer, a writer and an amateur film maker. As she always says, performing keeps her grounded. The instilled discipline from all her trainings as a performer enables her to also do her job as company manager/administrator. Always a stickler for professionalism, she also inculcates this in all the performers she features.
She espouses the triangle for success as a performer: DEDICATION, DISCIPLINE AND PROFESSIONALISM.