Despite being the Philippines’ lone entry in the 2014 Sochi Winter Olympics and finishing 19th out of 24, 19-year-old Michael Martinez won the hearts of many Filipinos for his gutsy and passionate performance.
Following in the footsteps of Lea Salonga, Filipinos took to the stage in the 2014 revival of “Miss Saigon”: Filipino-American Eva Noblezada played Kim; Jon Jon Briones played The Engineer; and singer Rachelle Ann Go stunned the audience as world-weary bar girl Gigi.
It was a bittersweet year for Gilas Pilipinas; they didn’t win medals during the Fiba Basketball World Cup and the Southeast Asian Games this year, but they won the hearts of Filipinos with their passion for the game and puso, or heart.
With a seating capacity of 55,000, the Philippine Arena in Bocaue, Bulacan is touted as the world’s largest multipurpose arena. Built by the Iglesia ni Cristo, the Arena is the centerpiece of a 140-hectare tourism zone called Ciudad de Victoria.
Fighting off more than a hundred Syrian rebels for several hours while being surrounded and running low on ammunition, 40 Filipino peacekeepers pulled off the "greatest escape" in Golan Heights last August. Their UN commander drew flak for previously ordering the Filipinos to surrender.
This year’s Cinemalaya Philippine Independent Festival drew more aspiring actors and crowds while Filipino filmmakers received critical acclaim in film festivals around the world, from Lav Diaz at the Locarno International Film Festival to young Mikhail Red at the Vancouver International Film Festival.
Robert Lopez and wife Kristen Anderson-Lopez won the Best Song Award in the 2014 Academy Awards and were also included in Time’s Most Influential People list for a singular achievement: Their song “Let it Go” in the animated feature film “Frozen” became a worldwide phenomenon, continuing to trend months after its release in November 2013.