As gold hunt begins, spotlight falls on women’s volleyball

first_imgJAKARTA—In recent years, one sport has emerged in popularity and sparked a boom back home, with two commercial leagues providing lucrative careers for its players, who have reached the celebrity status that was once the sole domain of basketball stars.Now, women’s volleyball in the Philippines gets a chance to measure itself against a continental yardstick when the country’s first squad in 36 years in the Asian Games opens its campaign against what its coach calls “the gold standard” Sunday afternoon at Gelora Bung Karno’s (GBK) Tennis Courts here.ADVERTISEMENT View comments “We’re very excited to play Thailand because they are the gold standard in Asian volleyball,” Shaq delos Santos told scribes Saturday after practice. “We waited a long time to be back in the Asian Games, so we might as well give it our best shot.”To say that Team Philippines prepared for the Asiad as best as it could is an understatement. It had just come from a two-week training camp in Japan and barely saw family before flying over to this city known as Asia’s version of the Big Apple.FEATURED STORIESSPORTSGinebra beats Meralco again to capture PBA Governors’ Cup titleSPORTSJapeth Aguilar wins 1st PBA Finals MVP award for GinebraSPORTSTim Cone still willing to coach Gilas but admits decision won’t be ‘simple yes or no’For enigmatic star Alyssa Valdez, it’s all worth it.“It’s a big thing being able to represent your country, and in the Asian Games at that,” the former Ateneo ace said. “We’re here to give it all we have. That’s our biggest asset.” ‘High crimes and misdemeanors’: Trump impeachment trial begins Peza offers relief to ecozone firms LATEST STORIES Lights inside SMX hall flicker as Duterte rants vs Ayala, Pangilinan anew Palace OKs total deployment ban on Kuwait OFWs Carpio hits red carpet treatment for China Coast Guard PLAY LIST 02:14Carpio hits red carpet treatment for China Coast Guard02:56NCRPO pledges to donate P3.5 million to victims of Taal eruption00:56Heavy rain brings some relief in Australia02:37Calm moments allow Taal folks some respite03:23Negosyo sa Tagaytay City, bagsak sa pag-aalboroto ng Bulkang Taal01:13Christian Standhardinger wins PBA Best Player award Nadine Lustre’s phone stolen in Brazil Gov’t in no rush to rescue animals in Taal Judy Ann’s 1st project for 2020 is giving her a ‘stomachache’ MOST READ Delos Santos said that playing in this tournament where his wards are great underdogs will count for a lot.“We need tough competitions like this to develop our chemistry,” he said. “This [team] is a work in progress. We improved a lot [after the Japan trip]. We trained hard for this and we are ready.”Thailand has lorded it over the Southeast Asian region longer than some of the Filipino volleybelles have been alive. The Thais have won the last 11 editions of the SEA Games and are ranked 16th in the world as of August last year.Volleyball’s return to the Games—and Jordan Clarkson’s arrival to join Gilas Pilipinas—has drowned the start of other events Sunday for the Philippines, which will be in the hunt for 20 gold medals with entries in swimming, shooting, fencing, wushu and wrestling.Seven titles will be up for grabs in swimming at the Aquatic Center of GBK Stadium with the country pinning its hopes on Jasmine Alkhaldi even as the men’s and women’s poomsae squads see action as the country tries to better its one-gold haul in the 2014 edition in Incheon.ADVERTISEMENT In fight vs corruption, Duterte now points to Ayala, MVP companies as ‘big fish’ Take Two Don’t miss out on the latest news and information. DepEd’s Taal challenge: 30K students displaced Jayson Valdez and Amparo Teresa Acuña try to shoot their way to podium finishes in the 10m air rifle and mixed pistol events with wushu also staking a gold in men’s changquan, where the Philippines has eight entries.The Philippines also opens its women’s softball campaign against Hong Kong.Elaborate opening rites—where 12,500 fireworks launched 100 feet into the air—featuring the traditional parade of athletes formally brought the curtains up on the Games.Clarkson acted as the Philippine flag-bearer.Sports Related Videospowered by AdSparcRead Nextlast_img read more

Lily Allen Joins StarStudded Coram Charity Concert

first_imgThe Royal Albert Hall came alive for Coram’s biggest ever musical fundraising concert featuring Lily Allen, Sophie Ellis-Bextor, Queen’s Brian May, Kerry Ellis, The Feeling and Maverick Sabre this week.Coram is committed to improving the lives of the UK’s most vulnerable children and young people.Maverick opened the evening’s entertainment playing a stripped-back set accompanied by his guitarist. He encouraged the audience to text a £10 donation to support Coram’s music therapy services, which help vulnerable children to communicate.Sophie Ellis-Bextor was up next, charming the crowd with her folk-pop ballads. Sophie remarked how incredible it was that when the Royal Albert Hall was built, Coram had already been helping children for 140 years!Sophie is featured on Coram’s newly-launched supporter pledge wall and read pledges from other celebrity supporters such as Richard E. Grant and Lisa Faulkner.The audience were brought straight to their feet by the next act, pop rockers, The Feeling. Front man Dan Gillespie was quick to voice his support for Coram, saying “It’s great to be here for a wonderful cause.”Then it was time for the soulful tones of Brian May and Kerry Ellis, who had the audience in the palms of their hands. The duo performed ‘Born Free’, written by Coram supporter and award-winning lyricist, Don Black. Kerry Ellis said generously, “It’s a joy to be here in this wonderful venue for such a fantastic cause.”Compere for the evening, leading broadcaster Mike Read, thanked the acts and reminded the crowd that Coram was counting on their support to make the concert a successful event for vulnerable children needing the charity’s help.Soon enough, the generosity of the crowd shone through and an announcement was made that over £20,000 had been raised through texts and donations! £10 donations can still be made by texting CORAM to 70660 and a special online auction raising funds for Coram is still available to bid on until midnight on Thursday.Prizes include afternoon tea with English actor Bill Nighy and a VIP tour of the Shard with Champagne dinner.Next up was the inimitable Lily Allen who was making her return to the stage after several years break, to perform for the charity.“I’m very pleased to be here for Coram,” smiled Lily, before launching into her stunning set. A particular highlight was the moment Lily invited a little girl named Chardonnay onto stage, who sung along to latest single, ‘Air Balloon’.Coram will continue its 275th anniversary year celebrations with exciting events throughout the year and the launch of the charity’s first online supporter pledge campaign. All supporters can stand up for today’s ‘invisible’ children, just as the charity’s founder Thomas Coram did 275 years ago and sign the wall, and sign up for Coram’s newsletter to stay up to date.Thanks to the City Rocks committee who organised the concert, 100 tickets were donated free of charge to young people and families who have been supported by Coram directly.Coram thanks all the performers and the City Rocks committee for making this incredibly succesfull concert possible, and the Royal Albert Hall for selecting Coram as its first ever Charity of the Year.last_img read more

Ed Asner Attends 2nd Annual AutFest Film Festival

first_imgSONY Pictures Entertainment, ABC’s The Good Doctor, Netflix’s Atypical, and several filmmakers were honored for their contributions to autism awareness “From Spectrum to Screen” by the Autism Society of America at the 2nd Annual AutFest International Film Festival (April 28-29), held at the Writers Guild Theater in Beverly Hills.Ed Asner at 2nd Annual AutFest Film FestivalCredit/Copyright: Mathew ImagingAutFest screened over 16 feature films, shorts and television programs that promote autism awareness and/or are made by autistic filmmakers.Seven-time Emmy winner and autism advocate Ed Asner presented SONY Pictures Entertainment with the AutFest Visionary Award, bestowed upon Jeff Frost, President of Sony Pictures Television Studios, and Co-Presidents of Sony Pictures Television Chris Parnell and Jason Clodfelter at the festival’s closing reception. ABC’s The Good Doctor and Netflix’s Atypical received Spotlight Awards, honored for their exceptional portrayal of autism in a positive light to help increase understanding and acceptance of people on the spectrum.Prior to the reception, cast and crew of Netflix’s Atypical participated in a Q&A moderated by PEOPLE reporter Kara Warner after a screening of two episodes. Participating in the panel were Creator Robia Rashid (Will & Grace, How I Met Your Mother), Oscar-nominated actress Jennifer Jason Leigh (The Hateful Eight), Brigette Lundy-Paine (Downsizing, The Glass Castle), Keir Gilchrist (It’s Kind of a Funny Story), Nik Dodani (Kevin from Work), Layla Weiner and Nikki Gutman; Executive Producers Mary Rohlich (Gleason, Baywatch); Author David Finch (The Journal of Best Practices) and Autism Consultant Michelle Dean (Ph.D. Special Education, UCLA).Following the Atypical panel, ABC’s The Good Doctor screened one episode and held a panel/Q&A immediately following. Emmy-winning Executive Producer David Shore (House, Sneaky Pete), Emmy-winning actor Richard Schiff (The West Wing, Ballers), Nicholas Gonzalez (How to Get Away with Murder, Pretty Little Liars, Narcos) and Autism Consultant Melissa Reiner (Md.Ed) participated, also moderated by Kara Warner, PEOPLE.Additional highlights of the festival included a Power Rangers screening, followed by a panel with Actor RJ Cyler, who plays Billy Cranston, an autistic nerd and the super hero Blue Ranger. Oscar-nominated Executive Producer/Writer John Gatins (Flight) joined the panel, moderated by Director/Producer Kevin Tenney. The panel was met with a huge ovation from the audience as the Blue Power Ranger character (RJ Cyler) is the first super hero to be depicted as autistic.The film Please Stand By screening was followed by a panel with Director Ben Lewin (The Sessions), Writer Michael Golcamo (Grimm) and Autism Consultant Elaine Hall (The Miracle Project, Fly Away), moderated by Matt Asner, AutFest founder and Autism Society’s VP of Development.“AutFest is proud to honor SONY Pictures Entertainment and outstanding television shows Atypical and The Good Doctor for their cinematic and television contributions reflecting the autism community in a positive light,” said Matt Asner. “We are touched by the overwhelming support of the entertainment and autism communities and look forward to this annual event.”Over six feature films and eight short films and two television series were presented during the two-day festival that included Roman J. Israel Esq, Barfi, Dina and Randy’s Canvas. Two of the shorts, The Girl Inside and Big Mouth were written and directed by filmmakers on the autism spectrum. A special panel addressing “Love and Relationships” followed the Barfi screening. For more information, visit autfestasa.com or follow @AutFest on Twitter, Instagram and Snapchat.The 2nd Annual AutFest International Film Festival winners include:Best Film:Randy’s Canvas, directed by Sean Michael Beyer (U.S.A.)Best Documentary:Dina, directed by Antonio Santini and Dan Sickles (U.S.A.)Best Short:Sisterly, directed by Nina Vallado (U.S.A.)Best PerformanceAdam Carbone, Randy’s Canvas (U.S.A.)Best Autistic Filmmaker:Abbey Romeo, The Girl Inside (U.S.A.)Celebrities including Emmy-nominated actor Gary Cole (Veep), Oscar-nominated actor Robert Forster (Jackie Brown), Denise Grayson (Social Network) and Johnny Dowers (The Bridge) were on hand to attend the festival’s closing festivities.In attendance were Autism Society of America’s Joe Joyce, Chairman, Board of Directors; Scott Badesch, President and CEO; and Lori Ireland, Vice Chair, Board of Directors. AutFest Honorary Committee Members include seven-time Emmy winner and autism advocate Ed Asner, actress Kristen Bell (House of Lies), actor Dax Shepard (CHIPS), Emmy-winning actress comedian Sarah Silverman, Golden Globe-nominated actor Matthew Modine (Stranger Things), Emmy-nominated actor Gary Cole (Veep), Autism Speaks co-founder Bob Wright, The Suzanne Wright Foundation president Liz Feld, Warner Bros.AutFest 2018 is proudly sponsored by GOLD: Hyundai, State of Qatar, Sony Pictures, Entertainment; SILVER: Ainsworth Pet Nutrition, Lindamood Belle, Netflix; FRIENDS OF THE FESTIVAL: ABC, Autism Pie, Bob Wright, Center for Developing Minds, ICM, Saban, SAG-Aftra;TRIBUTE BOOK: PCW Props, Shuman Management; MEDIA SPONSORS: ABC, Variety, INKIND: Foreo, MAC Cosmetics, One-Hope Wine, Penta Water, Runway Tech, Sevenly, Sprouts; GIFTBAG: Art by Luis, Designs by Siri, Lindamood Belle, Thikkun Spalast_img read more

Jane Pratt Named EditorCreative Director Style With SAY Media

first_imgPratt has written for Elle, Marie Claire and Maxim magazines. After founding Jane, Pratt left her position as editor in the summer of 2005; she was replaced with ElleGirl founding editor Brandon Holley. Conde Nast then shut down Jane magazine for good, with the August 2007 issue as its last. Since her departure from Jane, Pratt’s whereabouts have supplied a fair amount of media fodder. In 2007, it was rumored Pratt was to start a magazine with Gwen Stefani, lead singer of pop group No Doubt; then in November 2010, Pratt was said to be partnering with fashion blogger Tavi Gevinson on a magazine for “wallflowery teenage girls.” Other names tapped to join xoJane.com include Emily McCombs, former managing editor of Asylum.com and contributing editor of Lemondrop.com, who will act managing editor of xoJane.com. Cat Marnell joins the xoJane.com as beauty editor; previously, she acted as a freelance writer and beauty editor of Lucky Magazine. Other xoJane.com contributors will include Christina Kelly, Laia Garcia and Eric Nicholson. Jane Pratt, former editor-in-chief of Sassy and Jane magazines, has been named editor and creative director of style with SAY Media. In this new role, she will be acting as editor-in-chief for xoJane.com, a new women’s-interest site owned by SAY.last_img read more

The Deadman to rise again Undertaker returns to SmackDown on September 10

first_imgWWE WebsiteArguably the greatest figure in the history of pro-wrestling, The Undertaker, is coming back to WWE’s flagship weekly program SmackDown. He would be part of a special episode that would take place at the iconic Madison Square Garden on September 10.This would be a special moment for the former World Heavyweight Champion as it would be his first appearance on an episode of SmackDown at the legendary arena. September 10 would also be special because both Raw and SmackDown will take place back-to-back at the same venue.The Undertaker had been out of action for a substantial amount of time at the beginning of the year and also was absent from Wrestlemania 35. In this time, he appeared out of character on some non-WWE shows. Eventually, WWE decided to re-sign the superstar and agreed on a highly-lucrative contract for the Deadman.Since then, the superstar has made numerous appearances on WWE and has also competed in two matches. His contest with Goldberg had turned out to be a complete disaster while a tag-team match, with Roman Reigns as his partner, against Shane McMahon and Drew McIntyre fared better.WWE has also teased a storyline between the Phenom and Hall of Famer Sting. Only time will tell whether this appearance of Undertaker would lead to a new feud.last_img read more

Caribbean Islands Begin Preparations For Hurricane Irma

first_imgNASA/NOAA via APThis enhanced satellite image made available by the NOAA GOES Project shows Irma, in the middle of the Atlantic Ocean on Saturday, Sept. 2, 2017 at 1:45 p.m. In the wake of Harvey, meteorologists are already looking warily at another system: Hurricane Irma, which intensified from a tropical storm to a major hurricane in just 30 hours, is steadily moving west across the Atlantic.Islands at the eastern end of the Caribbean Sea made preparations Sunday for approaching Hurricane Irma, a Category 3 storm that could threaten the area beginning Tuesday.Hurricane watches were posted for Antigua and Barbuda, Anguilla, Monserrat, St. Kitts and Nevis, St. Martin, Guadeloupe and the British Virgin Islands.The U.S. National Hurricane Center said the storm could near that region late Tuesday. It said islands farther north, including the U.S. Virgin Islands and Puerto Rico, should monitor the progress of the storm.The Antigua and Barbuda weather service said Irma was expected to bring heavy rains, rough surf and high winds to islands along the northern edge of the Antilles.Long-range forecasts indicated Irma likely would curve to the northwest beginning late Monday and skirt to the north of those islands on a path that could potentially take it to the U.S. East Coast, but it was too early to make a definitive prediction.Antigua’s prime minister, Gaston Browne, urged people to take preventative measures in case the storm should hit, including cleaning drains and removing objects that could be sent airborne by high winds. Workers began pruning trees and shrubs to reduce chances for branches to tear down power and phone lines.“The passage of a hurricane is not a matter to be taken lightly, but we must not panic,” Browne said in a statement.The U.S. hurricane center said Irma had maximum sustained winds of 115 mph (185 kph) Sunday night and some strengthening was expected over the next two days. The storm was centered about 710 miles (1,145 kilometers) east of the Leeward Islands and moving west-southwest at 14 mph (22 kph).Puerto Rico’s governor, Ricard Rossello, said government agencies in the U.S. territory were prepared to deal with any emergencies caused by the storm.“We have established protocols for the safety of all,” he said at a news conference, while he also urged islanders to take precautions.In the Dominican Republic, Public Works Minister Gonzalo Castillo said workers there were clear away road works and also clean out blockages of sewer drains. He said President Danilo Medina would lead a meeting with emergencies agencies on Monday to discuss storm preparations. Sharelast_img read more

Awakening of Sufism

first_imgAfter having received a whole hearted response at the Jaipur Literary Festival, ‘Ajmer Sharif’, authored by Reema Abbasi and published by Niyogi Books was officially launched at Oxford Bookstore, Connaught place with eminent classical danseuse and researcher activist Manjari Chaturvedi and 26th Generation Gaddi-Nasin, Ajmer Sharif, Haji Syed Salman Chishty.’Ajmer Sharif’ – the heart of homage for thousands of all faiths, welcomes a tidal wave of humanity for the saint known as Gharib Nawaz (benefactor of the poor), whose spiritual order is the most lyrical and inclusive. This book showcases the absolute necessity of Khwaja Muinuddin Chishti in our conflicted times. Today, he is a signpost of unity; a reminder of the relevance of Sufism as a conduit of harmony and justice. Also Read – Add new books to your shelfThe pages of the book narrates the story of the founder of the Chishti Sufi Order in South Asia – who knew that hunger supersedes doctrines – and of his movement, which began in a mud hut over eight centuries ago. Muinuddin Chishti brought Qawwali, the genre of Sufi devotional recitals, and the ideal of acceptance to the world. He discouraged religious supremacy and patriarchy by example – his wife was a central leader and his only daughter became a caliph – an aspect practised at his seat, but cast off by other shrines of his lineage. Also Read – Over 2 hours screen time daily will make your kids impulsiveAn elaborately researched oeuvre on the history, spiritual journey, mystical power, and legacy of the 12th century Sufi giant – rich with accounts of Mughals as devotees, monuments, rituals, and over 200 unique, evocative photographs – ‘Ajmer Sharif’ traces the life of the saint and reveals the living force of his shrine.The author, Reema Abbasi was the recipient of the Gender in Journalism Award 2003 from UNESCO for the most gender sensitive reportage. At present, she is a columnist, and an independent contributor with international newspapers, and a regular commentator on socio-political issues. In the last decade, her writings have maintained a rabid focus on the values of secularism. With her last book ‘Historic temples in Pakistan: A call to conscience’, she aimed to stir a discourse that dispels intolerance towards any faith .An in-depth researched work on the history and spiritual journey of the Sufi saint Khwaja Muinuddin Chisti, the book describes the life and times of the Saint and the continued relevance of his much-visited shrine at Ajmer Sharif.last_img read more