U.P. Naming Mahal

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"U.P. Naming Mahal"
Anthem of the University of the Philippines
English title U.P. Beloved
Written 1917
Published 1917
Writer(s) Teogenes Velez
Composer(s) Nicanor Abelardo
Language Original in English, now in Filipino
Performed by U.P. Concert Chorus

U.P. Naming Mahal is the university hymn of the University of the Philippines. The melody for the song was written by Nicanor Abelardo, an alumnus and former faculty member of the U.P. College of Music. Abelardo is considered to be one of the Philippines' greatest musicians. Because of the original scale of the hymn in B flat major, which is too high for the usual voice, U.P. Conservatory of Music (now U.P. College of Music) professors Hilarion Rubio and Tomas Aguirre reset the music in G major.

The original English lyrics (entitled as "U.P. Beloved") were taken from a poem by Teogenes Velez, a Liberal Arts student. The translation to Filipino was a composite from seven entries in a contest held by the University. The judges did not find any of the seven translations as fully satisfactory.[1]

U.P. Naming Mahal is usually sung during university activities, rallies and athletic competitions, notably the UAAP, by the students, staff, alumni and officials. It is usually sung with a raised left fist, although raising the right is also common; university tradition states that raising the left fist shows one's defiance against the government (usually against the Philippine and/or U.P. government), while raising the right fist shows support.[citation needed]

Modified Lyrics[edit]

In 1997, a musical play entitled "Lean" was held to commemorate the 10th year since the assassination of a prominent U.P. student leader in 1987, Leandro Alejandro. In this play, Gary Granada, the one who made the libretto of this play, remixed the tune of U.P. Naming Mahal in a contemporary rock version and gave it a new and more "nationalistic sounding" lyrics, reasserting the purpose of the Iskolar ng Bayan as a servant of the people.

Centennial Version[edit]

A new set of lyrics was set on 2007, in time for the U.P. Centennial Celebrations. This set is of a more activist and nationalist sentiment. The recorded version is sung by notable artists from U.P., including Gary Granada and Cooky Chua. The Lyrics are adapted from the "Lean" Musical, though given a much more mellow and dramatic tune.

See also[edit]

External links[edit]


  1. ^ A Bit of History: How UP Naming Mahal Came to Be | UP Centennial Website Archived January 8, 2008, at the Wayback Machine.