PH Embassy in Spain releases virtual 'Rizal's Madrid' tour

Rose Carmelle Lacuata, ABS-CBN News

Posted at Mar 07 2021 11:38 PM | Updated as of Mar 08 2021 08:04 AM

MANILA - The Philippine Embassy in Spain on Saturday released a virtual walking tour featuring places frequented by Jose Rizal during his stay in the Spanish city of Madrid.

The video, which follows the format of a walking tour, features 15 places around Madrid, frequented by Rizal and other Filipinos during the 19th century.

The stops include Calle Amor de Dios 13-15, where Rizal first lived; the location of the old Facultad de Filosofia y Letras of the Universidad Central (now Universidad Cumplutense de Madrid) and the Facultad de Medisina de San Carlos, where Rizal studied philosophy and medicine, respectively.

Consul Mikhal de Dios, on behalf of the Embassy in Madrid, told ABS-CBN News the project was developed after the National Commission for Culture and the Arts (NCCA) asked the Philippine Embassies in different countries for ideas for its "PADAYON: Paglikha sa Panahon ng Pandemya" program.

Ambassador Philippe Lhuillier had previously considered producing an audio guide for visitors in Madrid, similar to the ones in museums, but given the context of the pandemic, the idea was transformed into a video tour instead.

"A virtual walking tour, shared via social media, would also be much more useful as an educational tool than an audio guide, since it will allow viewers to watch it anytime, anywhere," the Embassy said.

Upon receiving support for the project, an all-Filipino team started working on the project in October 2020, but was not able to finish filming and editing until February 2021 because of safety protocols in Madrid.

"It involved a great deal of work, as our contributors can confirm, including writing subtitles in three languages (English, Filipino, and Spanish), researching supporting documents, filming additional footage, and recording accompanying audio for the tour," the Embassy added.

Included in the team are Jacee Amon, Eunice Luciano and Jolina Manalang, who were in charge of the directing, filming and editing of the entire project. Dr. Ros Costelo, a history professor at the Department of History in the University of the Philippines Diliman, served as the historical consultant, writer and host of the project.

According to the Embassy, they are now hoping to replicate this project by proposing the idea to their colleagues in other Philippine embassies and consulates in Europe, especially in places Rizal visited in the past.

"We are also proposing the idea to our colleagues in other Philippine embassies and consulates, which we hope they will consider, as Rizal's travels through Europe were an integral part in the formation of his thoughts and ideals as our national hero," it said.

It also said this project is very relevant and timely as the country commemorates the 500th anniversary of the circumnavigation of the world by Ferdinand Magellan and Sebastian Elcano.

"For our part, the long and deep historical connection between the Philippines and Spain is one major theme that our Embassy will keep returning to, now and in the future. We feel it is especially relevant this year, in the context of the 500th anniversary of the circumnavigation of the world by Magellan and Elcano, and the role that our country played in this story," the Embassy said.

The virtual walking tour of Rizal's Madrid is available on the Embassy's official Facebook page, on their Youtube channel and on their official website.

Subtitles in Filipino, English and Spanish are also available.

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