One of my fondest memories of the Cultural Center of the Philippines (CCP) is seeing the musical Mamma Mia! with my family. I’m a big fan of musicals, ABBA, and anything dripping in eleganza so I had a great time seeing the story unfold with my loved ones. Soon I’ll relive the memory because Mamma Mia! is returning to Manila and they just announced the cast!
I remember watching Mamma Mia! when it was first staged here in 2012. The music was beautiful (I am a huge ABBA fan) but I couldn’t see much because I was seated in what is fondly called the nosebleed section. Oh, how I wished I was closer so I could see the colorful costumes and the grand set. Luckily, a film adaptation was already out by then so I could fully appreciate the musical.
Now, I can relive the magic of the stage version because Mamma Mia! is returning to Manila on September 29 as part of their international tour!
Repertory Philippines’ Arsenic and Old Lace starts out innocent enough: we are introduced to Abby and Martha Brewster, two elderly sisters who live in a quaint and cozy home. On the outside, they look like the sweetest of sisters, always looking out for other people and joining their local church’s charities. But what people don’t know is that they have a taste for death. What follows is a rip-roaring black comedy about madness, mayhem, and murder.
Many of us grew up watching The Lion King, the Disney classic set in the Pride Lands, where the cub Simba flees into exile after he thinks he is responsible for the death of his father, the king Mufasa. The film achieved box office and critical success but for us, we remember it for its story and its songs, like “Circle of Life” and “I Just Can’t Wait to be King.”
So imagine everyone’s surprise when it was announced that the musical adaptation, which is the highest-grossing Broadway production of all time, will be visiting Manila. I watched during the gala night and was blown away by the set, the costumes, and the song numbers. Suddenly I was five years old again, watching the animated film on VHS.
Here’s a secret: whenever I feel down, I watch the Helpmann Awards performance of The Lion King‘s “Circle of Life.” It’s one of my favorite renditions of the songs and I get a little teary-eyed everytime I watch it. Here’s what I’m talking about:
When it comes to large egos, it has been said that you can find the largest in the entertainment industry, where divas abound. It’s a concept that Repertory Philippines explores in A Comedy of Tenors, an operatic farce that pokes fun at massive egos in massive proportions.
The year 2017 was all about mental health, from people openly declaring their status to others grappling with the complexity and validity of it. That’s why it’s such a pleasant surprise that the Philippine Educational Theater Association (PETA) produced ‘night, Mother, a thought-provoking play about what happens before a suicide attempt.
We’re all familiar with the story of Snow White, the Disney princess and heroine of the Brothers Grimm fairy tale. This year, the timeless story is brought to life by Ballet Manila in a charming and sweet watch that’s perfect for kids and kids at heart.