Manila : A musical performance based on the epic Ramayana on Monday drew loud applause from several world leaders and delegates at a grand opening ceremony of the two- day ASEAN summit.
The play reflected India’s cultural linkages with the Philippines and several member countries of the 10-member powerful bloc.
Prime Minister Narendra Modi, US President Donald Trump, Chinese Premier Li Keqiang, Japanese Prime Minister Shinzo Abe and several other leaders from ASEAN’s partner countries attended the glitzy opening ceremony at the highly fortified Cultural Centre in this bustling metropolis.
The Ramayana in the Philippines is called ‘Maharadia Lawana’ which means king Ravana. The Philippines’ famous dance is called ‘Singkil’ which is based on the Ramayana.
“You would be happy to know that the @ASEAN opening ceremony included excerpts from the musical Rama Hari, based on the Ramayana. Various parts of the Ramayana were beautifully highlighted in the Rama Hari. This shows our deep historical bonds and shared heritage,” Modi tweeted.
The musical performance was choreographed by Alice Reyes of Ballet Philippines, a leading ballet company in the country founded in 1969.
The PM said the Ramayana is widely popular among ASEAN nations and he complimented the cast and crew of the play for their “stupendous performance”.
“ASEAN celebrates 50 years of robust cooperation and working towards a better tomorrow. India cherishes the strong ties with the @ASEAN family,” Modi said.
Modi visited a philanthropist organisation in the Philippines that provides free Indian-made prosthesis ‘Jaipur Foot’ to needy amputees and donated USD 2,00,000 to it for its activities.