Cosmic escape with UP Fair 2018: Cosmos

Article by Faith Navarro and Hannah Paguila
Photos by Hannah Paguila

There are many things we would like to escape from even for just a while. Or maybe recharge and just have a fresher look at this life on earth. Like, can we take a step back and have a different view of this cosmos — away from the MRT problems, life pressures & global warming? Last week in the UP Fair 2018: Cosmos, a cosmic escape was possible for a night!

Ebe Dancel at UP Fair Cosmos

Cosmos, the fourth day of UP Fair 2018, was an out of this world treat in more ways than one.

It was out of your usual fenced UP Sunken Garden. Well, the annual music fest inside the University of the Philippines Diliman was still held there but the Cosmos organizers, the  UP Junior Marketing Association (UP JMA), extended the event outside the dimensions of the concert grounds by giving us a  pre-concert gig though Cosmic Battle, a battle of the bands. The finalists were your local indie bands- Sofa Sky, Escoda and Any Name’s Okay. The winner of the Cosmic Battle was given a spot in the Cosmos line-up.

The music night was also a different #CosmicEncounter. Like a star that you see in the night although it has been long gone, Cosmos 2018 will be forever etched in the hearts of the crowd and on the web of the Internet. Cosmos gave us teasers through Spotify playlists which we can always get back to whenever we want to reminisce that very humid & warm February 16 night. The playlists are a mix of creations from artists who would later on perform live at the UP Sunken Garden of music and memories, and artists whose music just perfectly fit the playlist’s mood. UP JMA left us guessing who’d really be there until the final release of their online publicity materials. It was a countdown of sorts leading up to the final lift off.

The crowd was lit

3.. Three volumes were released on Spotify with different themes. And it only takes at least three friends to make up a barkada. Attending the UP Fair is a shared experience. One can share it with fellow concert-goers, or one can have a cosmic encounter with friends, singing along to tunes of nostalgia and melodies of the continuing Filipino music scene. It’s inevitable that the UP Fair experience makes friends’ bonds stronger, and even creates a brand new barkada. In Barkada Jams, the first volume release on Spotify, featured anthems of friendship and shared memories. Get to relive fondest moments with the barkada through this playlist here.


2… Two people in love are the main components to make a couple complete. Alter one element in the formula – one not being in love, one becoming unfaithful (adding another person into the equation), and other factors – and the outcome can be heartbreak. Dart sa Heart is the playlist to accompany one through the heart’s woes, Feb-ibig vibes, and all of romance’s complexities. Relish the feels of being in love or cry your heart out to this UP Fair Cosmos volume.


1… There’s one night for #MissionCosmos to take off. For those who just can’t wait, Indie na Makahintay, to catch their all-time favorite acts perform live and sway to up and coming bands’ lyrical masterpieces is the playlist for them. These are songs from indie artists singing aloud that OPM is indeed alive and kicking which brings us to the third reason why the #MissionCosmos was such a success in taking us out of this world though music.

#MissionCosmos has taken off and landed with the OUT-OF-THIS-WORLD ARTIST LINE-UP. If you were there that night, you would have probably thought that the line-up’s so random and maybe there was no attention given to it by the organizers. But the longer you had lingered and thought, you would discover that the randomness was intentional and meant to put a spotlight on everyone, on both the emerging bands and the established ones by sandwiching new artists with the renowned. This intelligent design is a much more effective way of supporting emerging talents while letting the crowd enjoy the familiar. Who would thought THE Ebe Dancel would perform prior to newer artists such as IV of Spades & Munimuni. And by the way, Cosmos also supports home-grown UP Talents such as Lola Amour, Munimuni and Any Name’s Okay, who won the epic Cosmic Battle.


Although the UP Fair 2018: Cosmos and  all the other UP Fair nights were just a once-a-year endeavour, its biggest #CosmicMission is to donate its profit to the needs of the people of Marawi who were affected by the war on terror by the Duterte administration. The mission is to promote the local music scene and let the cosmos know that OPM is alive and kicking. But part of the quest is to also use platforms, iconic and widespread such as the UP Fair, as launchpads for causes which support our fellow Filipinos. Maybe we did a cosmic escape for a while but UP will always return to reality with a musically refreshed soul and touch the ground to continue being the change that it longs to see here on earth.