Tuesday, September 9, 2014

Musikal! (2014) A Musical Theater Celebration of CCP's 45th Anniversary

It's been days, but I still am hung-over.  The musical numbers are still parts of my dreams and I am very blessed to be able to watch this wonderful musical revue.  

When my dear Ate Carol told me about this the weekend before we watched this, I became very excited and told my folks about it.  It's my mom and dad's 48th church wedding anniversary week and dad wanted to celebrate in a very unforgettable way that he became ecstatic about this too. Mom, who is partially deaf was apprehensive at first, but when she found out it was going to be at the CCP, she was excited as well because, according to her, the sound system is very good.  She was able to appreciate the 7 December 2012 show of Rama Hari.

We bought the tickets at Ticket World, National Bookstore, Alabang Town Center and though we didn't really want time to go on quickly, we still couldn't wait for Friday to arrive.

Friday finally came, we did our best to have a very fruitful day, so that our spirits would be on a natural high when we arrive at the Cultural Center of the Philippines(CCP).

The first thing we did was to buy a program(PhP100.00).  We learned that we were familiar with most of the musicals except for a few, so this added to our excitement. I saw a lot of people I greatly admire, including a couple of my neighbors and Mr. Chris Millado, the director of the musical revue(Congratulations, sir!).

Maestro Gerard Salonga and the Philippine Philharmonic Orchestra were practicing when they arrived. Knowing the rules I asked the usherette if I could take some photographs and she said it was OK because the show has not started, but to do it quickly because I had to turn my phone off in a few minutes.

Theater Rules

Ms. Sheila Francisco introduced the first part of the program by giving us a bit of history then performing a wonderful duet with Red Nuestro(Makiliti Kang Totoo---all the while I thought the title of this piece was Ang Paruparo't Bulkalak. Tsk, tsk, tsk!---from the Zarzuela called WALANG SUGAT).  This number gave us a light feeling.

Next, the Musikal! Koro gave a good performance of the song Ang Babeng Malaya from the Rizalian musical called ANG KABABAIHAN NG MALOLOS.  

Soprano Margarita Roco sang Luksang Pangitain from SAN ANDRES B in melodically resonant way and with feelings that it brought me to tears.  

After Ms. Roco's beautiful rendition came the Ryan Cayabyab Singers singers excerpts from LORENZO.  They were good, but I liked the voice of the guy that portrayed San Lorenzo best.  

I hardly recognized Ebe Dancel at first.  He also seemed a bit nervous, but slowly it became obvious that his voice is really spectacular, for lack of a better term.  I believe he wowed the audience when he sang Lakambini from ROCK SUPREMO. 

Trixie Esteban at the Gawad Buhay 2014 singing "Sa Panaginip Lang Ako Minahal" from Sandosenang Sapatos

Even if I knew that the little girl was not crippled in real life, I shed a tear or two because of this number at MUSIKAL! Susie's father was a shoemaker and like Mr. Holland who had a deaf son who could not appreciate his music, her "Tatay" could not make shoes for his daughter.  I have not seen this musical, poor me, but here are some reviews:

BLUEBIRD OF HAPPINESS as performed by Trumpets Ensemble gave us a feeling that Christmas is in the air as they sang Christmas Morning.

BATANG RIZAL's Pag-asa ng Bayan was performed by the PETA Ensemble.  It was a "cute" number with a deep message.

Roeder, a son of a family friend in Cavite(well, I don't know if he still remembers it, but that's the truth...I was even there at his launching at the now defunct Rumors Dance Club where Ms. Isabel Granada was his special guest) introduced the next segment and STAGESHOW.  The number, aptly titled Titina,  was very provocative, but done in good taste.  (with Mailes Kanapi, Hazel Maranan, Regina de Vera, Antonette Go and Lhorvie Nuevo) 

KATY!'s  Aba ba Boogie is a very fun number led by Ms. Isay Alvarez-Seña with the Spotlight Artists Centre Ensemble.  

The Philippine Madrigal Singers sang a medley from NOLI ME TANGERE (a special arrangement made exclusively for them).

The PETA Ensemble led by the power couple, Isay and Robert Seña plus the awesome Kakai Bautista, gave a wonderful rendition of RAK OF AEGIS'(the songs of the rock band Aegis come alive in this musical) Munting Pangarap.

During the Intermission

After the Entr'acte, Mr. Robert Seña entered the stage by whistling "Basang-basa sa Ulan"(that's what I think he whistled) then introduced the next three performances.

I think I was in the fourth grade when this musical was first launched and was revived thirty years later.  MAGSIMULA KA!'s theme song was popularized by Leo Valdez, but during the revue it was performed well by the Spotlight Artists Centre Ensemble.

RIVALRY:Ateneo La Salle-The Musical's Boy from La Salle, in my Dad's opinion,was the corniest in the revue, but was very enjoyable just the same.  (Performed by some of the ladies from the 4th Wall Theater Company)

TOILET THE MUSICAL is one of the musicals in this revue that is not familiar to me.  Later, I learned(by reading the program, etc.) that this was about eight friends confessing their secrets inside the lavatory.  When it was Gus' (Red Concepcion) turn, he sang Take Me to the Sky beautifully.  

If Rak of Aegis beautifully knits together the songs popularized by Aegis, SA WAKAS weaves together songs of the rock band, Sugarfree.  Here, the song Bawat Daan, came to life.

SINTA: Different couples from different theater groups sang Alalahanin, Gunitain.  

The whole ensemble who performed a medley of songs from HIMALA made it seem like we were watching the whole musical instead of just excerpts.  The songs sung by Isay, Dulce, May Bayot-Castro, Cynthia Culig-Guico and Musikal! Koro were felt to the core.  Mom, not recognizing Dulce at first whispered to my ears, "They are all great, but she's my favorite.  Her deep beautiful voice resonates through the whole theater, maybe beyond." "Mom, that's Dulce." "Oh, that's why."  Isay, the chameleon, did her character, Nimia, justice.  May Bayot-Castro, sang her lamentation well, that it almost brought me to tears.  Dulce, as Aling Saling, of course, wowed the crowd, and Cynthia Culig-Guico as Chayong gave us goosebumps. 

The next three musicals are about acceptance of the homosexuals, their plight and their love life:

CAREDIVAS: Where Chelsea meets Faraj (They sing a duet called Mysterious...it's not exactly a duet because during the chorus other members of the cast sing with them at the background) and later, before the medley from Rama Hari, they sing Saan Ka Man Dalhin.  Both numbers are very lively and fun to watch.

MAXIE THE MUSICALE-  According to the people behind us, this musical is about Ang Pagdadalaga ni Maximo Oliveros.  I believed them when Jayvhot Galang as Maxie started singing Ang Buhay Ay Pelikula with his handsome police crush played by Jojo Riguerra

ZSAZSA ZATURNAH ZE MUZIKAL's Multo ng Nakaraan was wholeheartedly sung by Wenah Nagales(Zsa Zsa), Tuxqs Rutaquio(Ada/Adrian), Nar Cabico(Didi) along with Tatay Zombie(Ong Cabrera) who, even during his un-dead stage, still hated what his son has become.

The RAMA HARI ensemble sang and danced to a medley of the songs dear to my heart.  Even if only excerpts were showcased, the whole team performed like it was the entire dance musical. 

The Finale
Photo From Cynthia Guico's Page
Set design by Ricardo Eric Cruz
Lighting designer: Katsch S. J. Catoy
Digital Video Designer: G.A. Fallarme

(Since we weren't allowed to take pictures, I was not able to capture the standing ovation given by the audience to this wonderful ensemble...kudos to one and all)
After the MUSIKAL! Theater Friday Celebration

Nerisa G. Cabral's Bukas Luluhod Ang Mga Tala (1984) Parental Guidance

Featuring the songs composed by the genius called Willy Cruz and international pop songs (covers) Copied and pasted from imdb : A S...