A benefit concert, a healing journey

Kirby and Jared: For love of Nikki.

“I have known Ate Nikki since I was 11 years old. I remember she bought me my very first diary during our New York adventures,” mused pop singer Kirby Asunto.

‘Ate Nikki’ is Leani Auxilio, a young artist and activist who was diagnosed with stage 4 colon cancer in 2018 and is currently undergoing treatment.

Kirby and Nikki are long-time friends.  Nikki, 27, is the digital editor of OSM! Online Magazine. She is a member of the Fil-Am Press Club of New York and the women’s transnational organization AF3IRM. Kirby, 21, has offered to appear in a benefit concert dubbed “Faith, Hope, and Love” on October 25 at the Kalayaan Hall of the Philippine Center to help support medical costs.

“I cannot imagine not having Ate Nikki during my childhood adventures. I love her so much and cannot wait till she gets better so we will have more adventures,” said the 21-year-old Kirby. 

Kirby will be performing in the concert with tenor Jared Martin. Together they promise a musical show that will make autumn so much “lovelier and colorful.”

The concert will showcase Kirby as a truly versatile singer who can beautifully render classical, pop, and rock music. Her last solo concert was in 2017 in Jersey City.

Jared is an award-winning tenor who has been non-stop in his musical gigs in the past months.  He recently wowed audience in his performance at the OPM, the final tour at the Golden Nuggets in Atlantic City in September.  As a stage actor, his latest musical plays were the “Hunchback of Notre Dame” where he played Quasimodo, “The Man of La Mancha” (as Sancho Panza), and “Into the Woods.”  

Bernie Visto is the music and stage director of “Faith, Hope, and Love,” a production of UNIFFIED, a 501 (c) 3 teacher’s organization. It is a special fundraiser conceptualized by Shirley Asunto, Kirby’s mother and manager, for Nikki who is on her healing journey from colon cancer.

Jared for his part said he was very humbled to have been asked to be part of the concert.

“We are doing this all for Nikki. I am glad to be able to share my voice in a way that it will benefit the health, and hopefully, the happiness of Nikki. We hope that this benefit show will help Nikki and her family get through this very challenging time,” he said. 

The concert is made possible through the sponsorship of the Conzerge Hotel Collection, Blakely Hotel, JB Entertainment Production, Popsie’s, DU Consultancy, and Serendipity Gem.  Its production team – composed of Shirley Asunto, Joji Babuschak, Marisse Panlilio, Elena Bahian, Cecile Duyongco, and Juliet Payabyab – also intends to convey the message of healthy and happy living and community cohesiveness through the concert. 

Tickets are at $35. Please contact Juliet Payabyab (718.267.0221), Elena Bahian (718.210.7847), Joji Babuschak (908.783.2680), Shirley Asunto (908.486.0874), Cecile Duyongco (619.518.6864), and Marisse Panlilio (908.906.9788) for purchases and reservations.  You can pay checks to UNIFFIED for tax-deductible donations. 

(C) The FilAm 2019

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