Showing posts from February, 2017

Fil-Canadian family secrets and lies go on stage in 'Anak'

February 22, 2017

TORONTO - Carlos Bulosan Theatre is staging "Anak," a play about a Filipino-Canadian family's hopes, dreams, secrets, and lies.

CBT artistic director Leon Aureus is directing. He describes the play as "a touching drama about a family facing unexpected challenges that uncover deep-seated resentment and tensions."

"Anak" is the Filipino gender-neutral word for "offspring/son/daughter." In the play, two sisters end up in different economic circumstances. One has a daughter who is facing a life detour and the other has a son with a secret that threatens to tear the family apart.

Written and to be performed by the CBT Collective, the group's resident pool of artists: Ann Paula Bautista, Belinda Corpuz, Isabel Kanaan, Richard Mojica, Alia Rasul, and Anthony Raymond Yu.

Personal stories

The play was crafted based on personal ex…

'Forever' does not exist, only 'till death do us part'

Lhorvie Nuevo plays a woman whose lover tries to raise her from the dead in Tanghalang Pilipino's 'Eurydice'
February 18, 2017
Philippine Daily Inquirer

"I'm not really fond of rainy days. They bring an unexplainable gloomy atmosphere," says Lhorvie Nuevo.

"I don't like getting soaked in the rain and feeling cold. That's why I always make sure to bring an umbrella with me. Better be safe than sorry."

Rain and a sense of gloom are two of the hallmarks of "Eurydice," Sarah Ruhl's adaptation of the Greek myth of the nymph whose lover, Orpheus, attempts to bring her back from the dead.

Audiences will have to watch the play to find out whether Nuevo will get wet during the show.

Tanghalang Pilipino is staging Guelan Luarca's Filipino translation, with direction and set design by Loy Arcenas. Marco Viaña plays Orfeo.

Memory and lasting love
Nuevo, 23, a member of TP's Actors' Company, has been preparing for th…

Fil-Am short film 'Mahal' wins Diamond Award, will screen at Belfast and NY

February 15, 2017

CHICAGO - "Mahal," a short film written and directed by Jay Españo, has won the Diamond Award for Student Film Competition at the 2016 California Film Awards.

The film is "a bittersweet story of a retired musician's attempt to reconnect with his Alzheimer's disease-stricken wife Dorothy."

"This film is my baby and all throughout the process, I've been very protective of it, like a parent," says Españo.

"So much so that I don't feel comfortable having my baby/work judged. It felt good and I'm proud that it was recognized. It's a validation of not just my hard work but also of everyone who was involved in making this film."

At the heels of wining this award, "Mahal" has just been selected to screen at the 2017 Respect Human Rights Film Festival in Belfast in March and at the 2017 Blackbird …

Meet Rep's 'Agnes of God' and her 'two boyfriends'

19-year-old Rebecca Coates headlines the intriguing play of science vs faith, along with Pinky Amador and Menchu Lauchengco-Yulo
February 10, 2017
Philippine Daily Inquirer

Repertory Philippines' second production for its 50th anniversary is John Pielmeier's "Agnes of God."

A psychiatrist (played by Menchu Lauchengco-Yulo) clashes with a mother superior (Pinky Amador) over novice nun Agnes--whether she gave birth by virgin conception or if she's mentally blocking the truth.

Rep first staged the play in 1983 with Pinky as Agnes and Rep co-founders Zeneida "Bibot" Amador as the mother superior and Baby Barredo as the psychiatrist.

This time, 19 year old Rebecca Coates has been cast as Agnes.

When she found out who she'd be acting with, "I came the closest thing there could be to a human explosion," said Coates. "I was so excited. But it's also very intimidating to work with your idols."

But, after meeting the two v…

Fil-Am playwright stages work on WWII roundup of Japanese Americans

February 10, 2017

BERKELEY, California - Filipino American playwright and director Jeffrey Lo is busy these days.

He just finished directing a play. Another play he directed last year was just nominated for "Best Production" by San Francisco Bay Area Theatre Critics Circle. He has also co-written a new play that's opening in a few weeks.

"I live in the South Bay Area and do most of my work along the peninsula. When I work in San Francisco, Berkeley or Oakland, there's a bit of driving, but I have good music and good podcasts to accompany me on the road," he says.

Lo is preparing to premiere a play he co-wrote with Adrienne Walters about the Japanese-American internment camps of World War II, when the US government summarily detained Japanese Americans in concentration camps on suspicion that they were supporters of imperial Japan.

"Beneath …

Heartache and 'kilig' in Bindlestiff Studio’s Feb. show

Feb. 1, 2017

SAN FRANCISCO - Filipino American theater group Bindlestiff Studio will stage "The Love Edition" (TLE), a collection of original short plays about love, at its theater on 6th Street from Feb. 9 to 25.

The production will be mounted as a variety show mixing comedy and drama while aiming to capture the complexities of "love, heartache, and the weirdness in between."

Producers Melanie Elvena and Laura Priscilla Paule explain that this year's theme, "Time After Time," spotlights melodrama throughout the ages.

Both grew up watching the Filipino drama anthology "Maalaala Mo Kaya" with their grandmothers.
"It's a TV show that takes real-life stories and totally sensationalizes them," says Paule. "But they're so compelling and realize that life itself is also full of melodrama."

"Tales of the…