Bibsy’s ‘touchstone’ trait—her generosity
In the course of her long, multihyphenated career as teacher, talent manager, filmmaker, book author, columnist, PR, producer and gallery owner, Bibsy Carballo worked quietly but effectively for the betterment of the entertainment industry.
Only after her demise earlier this month did the cumulative impact of her contributions and generosity begin to be retroactively appreciated, as some of the many people she helped come into their own as stars stepped forward to feelingly express their deep thanks to her.
Bibsy had many sterling attributes, but generosity now appears to be her signature, “touchstone” trait. She managed the careers of big stars like Dawn Zulueta and Gretchen Barretto, but she also helped a host of “lesser lights” and starlets whom other handlers disdained to get their all-important start in the biz, and they’re all fervently grateful.
We were among the beneficiaries of Bibsy’s selfless generosity, both personally and professionally. Many were the times when she would persuasively recommend us for coveted writing, editing and directing assignments—that in turn led to other opportunities and contacts that inestimably bolstered our career for the long term.
At Bibsy’s wake, some of her other beneficiaries shared anecdotes about their dear friend and selfless endorser. And, at her funeral, some “close-in” chums vowed to keep her inspiring memory alive and pay tribute to her in different ways.
That’s the long-term effect of good people’s actions, with one good turn “deserving” and engendering many more. Look what you’ve started, Bibsy!
As talent discoverer and manager, Bibsy went way beyond standard practice and commitment, especially for the “lesser lights” she boosted all the way to unexpected stardom.
Once, she asked us to watch the launching show of a new but gifted singer. It was held only in a small hotel lounge, but Bibsy enhanced her new talent’s glow by paying for special lights that made her look prized, “expensive”—and truly stellar.
We “scolded” her for the “unnecessary” expense, but she begged to disagree! And anyway, it was her money, so could we just please shut up, sip our Cointreau—and enjoy the show?
Being a crusty curmudgeon in comparison, we’d periodically remind Bibsy that some new discoveries are grateful and loyal only up to a point.
When another, better-connected manager offers them a better deal and stellar perks, they’ve been notoriously known for flying the coop with no compunction—or contrition!
True enough, the promising singer Bibsy had “enhanced” with expensive lighting did eventually fly her managerial coop (you can bet, we said, “I told you so!”)—but Bibsy took it “understandingly” in stride.
In fact, she proved herself to be of even sterner stuff by remaining friends with her flighty protegee, continuing to help her whenever the need arose—for which the protegee was grateful. It all works out in the end!
Besides, quite a number of Bibsy’s talents have loyally appreciated and loved her for the long term. So, even if she’s gone to a better place, they vow to spread the word about her inspiring example, “for keeps.”
As for Bibsy herself, she was no Hamlet, but “flights of angels” did sing her to her rest in her loved ones and friends’ grateful estimation!
P.S.: Bibsy recently told us that she was working on a new book to follow up on her well-received 2010 tome, “Filipino Directors Up Close.” Did she do enough work on it for it to merit posthumous publication?