Four things to do this week of Oct. 5 to 11

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Festivals to attend, books to read, and more in this week’s recommendations from the CNN Philippines Life staff. Photo courtesy of FIFTH WALL FEST

Metro Manila (CNN Philippines Life, October 4) — This week, attend an international dance festival, explore a classic horror book (and learn how to write one), and consider adopting your next furry friend.

Celebrate dance on camera at Fifth Wall Fest

This Oct. 8 to 17, the country’s first international dance festival returns for its second year with a packed festival roster of over 50 films celebrating dance on camera.

Seven of these films are the winners of this year’s Competition segment, including Grand Jury Prize winner “Amaranthine” by Chen Jiexiao (Singapore) and Honorable Mention “It Will Be A Disconcerted Day In A Starless Moonless Night” by Red (Vietnam). Finalists include “Satori” by Ella Semo of Israel, “Duel” by Alfonso Sales, “Manila Madness,” by Noah Del Rosario, “Piyesa” by CJ Reyes, and “Tanda Ng Pagtanaw” by Aireen Remoto of the Philippines.

In addition to the main film festival, FWF’s Black Box program returns with a roster of global talents. On Oct. 9, attend a discussion on dance documentary filmmaking with “Am I Being Selfish?” director Patrick Alcedo. On Oct. 12, learn about the unconventional Japanese performance art genre of Butoh with Butoh dancer Mitsuyo Uesugi, Toshio Mizohata of NPO Dance Archive Network, and Dance and Media Japan Director Naoto Iina. On Oct. 16, join award-winning filmmaker duo Jess & Morgs as they talk about dance filmmaking methods and experiences.

One other highlight: a special collaboration with Archivo 1984 for “Kada Hakbang,” a virtual exhibit showcasing a selection of illustrated Filipino dance material from the past 60 years; from film posters to book covers. Expect work for titles such as “Annie Batungbakal” and “Michael & Madonna.”

More events and talks will be announced soon. Register and learn more about the festival at

Start of the spooky season with Mary Shelley’s classic 1818 novel “Frankenstein." Photo by MARGA BUENAVENTURA

Explore classic horror literature with “Frankenstein”

I started off spooky season this year with Mary Shelley’s “Frankenstein,” the 1818 novel about a young scientist named Victor Frankenstein who creates a sentient being from an unorthodox science experiment. It’s a brief but enthralling read — Shelley describes idyllic Swiss forests and the desolate North Pole snow with fantastic detail, and manages to get in the minds of her characters by way of chapters-long monologues that really show you the heart of the matter. To be human and to exist, according to “Frankenstein,” is to be burdened with knowledge and suffering; we are painfully aware of our defects and wish for a place that will accept them. It makes sense that Shelley herself was just a teenager when she wrote this book; what else would an 18-year-old worry about than wanting to belong? —MARGA BUENAVENTURA

Learn how to write horror at this storytelling workshop

If you’re an aspiring author looking to write the next “Frankenstein,” Storywriting School is hosting a crash course on the horror writing genre on Oct. 9 to 15. Eight-time Palanca award winner Dr. Joem Antonio will teach students all about how to make horror vivid and keep readers engaged. The course includes discussions on fear levels and developing a horror atmosphere.

Sign up at

Find your next furry friend at this pet adoption drive.

There’s no doubt that pets have served as major sources of comfort for the many who’ve been subjected to loneliness and isolation over the past year. If you’ve been considering getting a pet, take this as your sign to adopt. Animal welfare group and animal shelter Lara’s Ark have teamed up for an adoption drive happening on Oct. 9 at the Garden Atrium in Southwoods Mall, Laguna.

Get to meet 15 of their adoptable rescue dogs and avail of their low-cost vaccination and microchipping at the outdoor event site. Visit their Instagram profile for more details and to find out how to sign up as a pre-approved adopter.