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(May 28)-The UP ARCO captured the hearts of the people of Belfort, France.

The UP ARCO is in Belfort, France to represent the Philippines for the first time at the Festival International de Musique Universitaire (FIMU) from 26 to 28 May.

In its second and last concert 27 May in the 3-day festival at the Atria, the audience gave the UP ARCO a prolonged feisty applause and standing ovation. The orchestra had to reciprocate the warm gesture reception by giving two encores.

M. Robert Belot, Belfort's vice mayor and the city's cultural head, was in the audience. Immediately after the inspired performance, he went to greet UP ARCO's music director and conductor, Prof. Edna Marcil Martinez.

Belot expressed gratitude to Martinez for making it to the festival for the first time, the Philippines being the farthest country to be in the festival this year.

He commended the UP ARCO, saying the orchestra "has fine quality sound, technically adroit, and brought to the festival something unique and fresh."

Because of the successful concert, the organizers have invited the UP ARCO to render another concert on the last day of the festival. –R.D.F.D.