MILPITAS, California - As Rodolfo “Dolphy” Quizon’s loved ones and fans mourn his passing, a group of overseas Filipinos called “Definitely Filipino,” thinks it’s not too late to give credit to the late King of Comedy.
The group recently launched an online petition calling on the National Commission for Culture and the Arts (NCCA), the body tasked to screen nominees for the National Artist Award, to finally give it to Dolphy.
Founder of Definitely Filipino Ben Totanes said, “Hindi na natin naibigay nung buhay pa siya. Ibigay na natin nung wala na siya dahil parangal din yun.”
Former NCCA executive director Cecile Alvarez-Guidote said that in 2009, Dolphy was denied the National Artist award because then Cultural Center of the Philippines Chief Nicanor Tiongson protested Dolphy’s inclusion as nominee, because of his early portrayals of gay men.
Guidote alleged that Tiongson saw Dolphy’s portrayals as demeaning to the gay community.
Despite this argument, many Filipinos agree that Dolphy still deserves the National Artist award.
Marcelina Parayno said, “Ginanap lang niya ‘yung kanyang papel ‘di ba?”
Totanes said Dolphy’s gay roles were not demeaning to the gay community, in fact, he said the King of Comedy helped raise awareness and even acceptance of the gays in the community.
The NCCA confirms Dolphy’s nomination for the award, and is now being reviewed.
In Las Vegas, members of Asian-American show band Society of Seven (SOS), said Dolphy was their inspiration — particularly when it came to comedy acts and dance moves.
SOS has been performing in Las Vegas for over 3 decades. The group admits that Dolphy is their inspiration when it comes to comedy acts and dance moves.
The group was flattered and honored to see Dolphy in the audience in one of their past performances.
Tony Ruivivar, SOS lead singer said, “We were so excited when he came to our show and he was cracking up during our show. It really brought tears to my eyes because it made me feel like wow! This is my idol who made me laugh, the king of comedy, gave me so many funny moments, and I make him laugh! I will treasure that moment.”
Meantime, Philippine Concert King Martin Nievera recalled the most unforgettable piece of advice Dolphy told him, particularly when it comes to treating women.
“He said, ‘Love them all. Love them all forever.’ All I know is, Dolphy — you are an inspiration to us all,” Nievera said.