Monday, July 22, 2013

Gantimpala Theater announces 36th Theater Season Line-Up!

Wazzup Pilipinas! 

As I've said before in many of my social media accounts and blog articles, the theater never ceases to amaze me. I would at anytime chose to watch a play rather than attend a movie premiere. Well, the big stars may be in the movies and TV, but I can see and appreciate real talented actors and actresses in theater compared to the other artists that we see in film or TV. Theater performers are indeed better and in fact well-motivated, highly inspired and matured. They do not only rely on their good looks alone, but more on their acting ability. They are not after huge paychecks but the personal satisfaction of being able to do well above and beyond their talent fees.

I would have to agree to what Director Joel Lamangan had to say during the press conference held at Cafe Ysabel in San Juan that there is a significant difference between TV/Film actors/actresses and Theater actors/actresses with regards to the desire to learn and improve their crafts and acting prowess. He had said it right when he mentioned that he would like to bring all of them, referring to the TV and Film performers, to Theater so that they will learn the discipline and hard work involved in theater acting, which will eventually make them better performers in the future.

I also admired the conviction of the actors/actress, and even directors, as some shared their life stories and backgrounds/origins and what the theater means to them. It seems these type of artists demand real respect from us, not that they have to force it out from us, but because they truly deserve to be applauded after every stunning performance.


Many have implied that the "money" is not in the theater but they preferred to be a part of it for a more noble reason of self-fulfillment. I am really baffled why theater actors are paid less compared to TV and Film performers, but it must be because of the wider reach. We are all aware that even the biggest theater house can only accommodate up to only a certain number of people, but TV and Film shows can be broadcasted and shared nationwide, and even worldwide, to reach a huge audience.

It is really sad that not many will be able to appreciate real talent due to certain limitations.

In the theater there are no "take 2's" or "retakes". The show must go on whatever happens, and each one of them must help each other out in order to keep the show going, even if it does not go as rehearsed or planned, until it finally reaches the end.


What makes the theater a lot more interesting is that you can expect to see something different at every performance since it is "live" and in real time....and as it progresses, the performers keep getting better and more convincing of their roles.

Gantimpala Theater is also faced with the difficulty of moderating or toning down their plays due to their target audience - school children. As they perform classics like Florante and Laura and Ibong Adarna, they must stick to the main facts based on the book but must still become extra creative to attract interest of the new generation of youth that is of the digital era.

You may watch the following videos featuring some of the artists and directors who are part of Gantimpala Theater's theater plays:


RJ Jimenez will play Emilio Jacinto in Katipunan: Mga Anak ng Bayan, directed by Joel Lamangan and Jun Pablo - the very first Bulwagang Gantimpala production written by multi-awarded playwright Bonifacio Ilagan with musical numbers created by award-winning musical composer Maestro Jesse Lucas


Ellrica plays Laura in Florante at Laura presented as Komedya. The Philippine literary masterpiece was created into play by Bonifacio Ilagan, with Director Roeder Camanag.


Roeder Camanag is the Director of Bulwagang Gantimpala's initial 36th season offering Florante at Laura being presented as a komedya.


Rafa Esplana plays Florante in Florate at Laura, presented as a komedya - to be directed by Roeder Camanag based from the work of playwright Bonifacio Ilagan.

Jay Gonzaga stars in Kanser, a play by Jomar Fleras based on Noli Me Tangere. Jay can also be seen in Ang Pagdadalaga ni Maximo Olivares as one of the lead stars.

More videos to be uploaded soon so please also check my YouTube account "Pinoy Tekkie" 

More photos during the event at the Wazzup Pilipinas Facebook Fan Page:

Be sure to watch all of Gantimpala Theater's plays and musicals.

For more details, below is the press release from Gantimpala Theater Foundation announcing their 36th season offerings.

Press Release:

“The Gantimpala Theater Season is officially on and we hope you join as we celebrate our 36th theater season,” declares artistic director Joel Lamangan, during a press conference at the Café Ysabel in San Juan City.

He adds, “We are giving our audiences the Four Classics and two new touring musicals, Ang Prinsepe at ang Pulubi and Katipunan: Mga Anak ng Bayan.”

Lamangan, multi-awarded film and TV director, actor for TV, stage and motion picture, takes over the position of the late Tony S. Espejo, founder, president and artistic director of the dramatic arts company for the past thirty-five seasons.

The first installment of the Four Classics begin this August with Florante at Laura, which written originally as an awit by Franciso Balagtas. This Philippine literary masterpiece, created into a play by Bonifacio Ilagan highlights the story of a quartet of lovers - Duke Florante and Prinsesa Laura of Albania, Prinsepe Aladin and Flerida of Persia, presented as a komedya, a Filipino theater form. Performances are on August 2, (9am.12nn/3pm), SM Southmall Cinema 3, Las Piñas City, August 9 and 10 (10am/2pm), Star Theater, Star City, Pasay City and August 16 and 17 (10am/2pm), AFP Theater, Camp Aguinaldo, Quezon City.

Kanser, the Jomar Fleras play based on Noli Me Tángere, is the second play. The novel’s most iconic characters come alive on stage. The longest-running Filipino theater production earned a nomination last year as Best Filipino Play (New/Revival) category from

Performances are on August 30, 31 and September 1, (9am/12nn/3pm), AFP Theater, Camp Aguinaldo, Quezon City, September 6, 7 and 8, (9am/12nn/3pm), Star Theater, Star City, Pasay City and September 12 and 13, (11am/2pm),SM Southmall Cinema 3, Las Piñas City.

Third play of the season is Ibong Adarna, a korido about a magical bird with a very long fancy tail, that changes into seven colors – ruby red, sunset orange, peach yellow, emerald green, satin blue, velvet violet, and deep indigo – these songs serve as cure for all types of afflictions. Playwright Ed Maranan presents the three dons Pedro, Diego and Juan and the many adventures they encounter in capturing the one bird that lures them all.

Performances are on September 27, 28 and 29, (9am/12nn/3pm), AFP Theater, Camp Aguinaldo, Quezon City, October 3 and 4, (11am/2pm),SM Southmall Cinema 3, Las Piñas City, and October 11, 12, and 13, (9am/12nn/3pm), Star Theater, Star City, Pasay City.

Rounding up the Four Classics is El Filibusterismo, the sequel to Noli Me Tangere, penned by Jomar Fleras centers on the enigmatic stranger Don Simoun, the affluent jeweler, moved by hatred and a fierce desire to avenge his sufferings, and to rescue Maria Clara from the nunnery where she has fled for sanctuary. He embarks on a crusade that aims to corrupt and weaken various institutions that eventually will lead to a bloody revolution.

Performances are on October 15, 16 and 17, (9am/12nn/3pm), AFP Theater, Camp Aguinaldo, Quezon City, November 22, 23 and 24, (9am/12nn/3pm), Star Theater, Star City, Pasay City, and November 28 and 29, (11am/2pm),SM Southmall Cinema 3, Las Piñas City.

The first touring musical Ang Prinsepe at ang Pulubi, is based on the Mark Twain classic, The Prince and the Pauper, this new Filipino musical tells the tale of two young men - male heir to the throne of England, Edward Tudor, son of Henry VIII and the other, Tom Canty, the unloved son of a beggar and thief. Born on the same day, the duo trade clothing one afternoon and, as a result, they trade lives as well. After many adventures, matters are set right - with one of them resuming his rightful, royal position and the other accepting a position that recognizes his innate intelligence and good heartedness.

Performances are on August 8,9 & 10, Angeles University Foundation, Angeles City, Pampanga; August 14, 15 & 16, Bren Guiao Cultural Center, San Fernando, Pampanga; August 23, in Laguna; August 28 & 29, Olongapo Convention Center, Olongapo City, Zambales; September 14 & 15, Ortega Gymnasium, San Fernando, La Union.

Metro Manila shows will be on January 17 and 18, 2014, (9am/12nn/3pm) at Star Theater, Star City, Pasay City, and January 23 and 24, (11am/2pm),SM Southmall Cinema 3, Las Piñas City.

KATIPUNAN: MGA ANAK NG BAYAN – the very first Bulwagang Gantimpala production written by multi-awarded playwright Bonifacio Ilagan with musical numbers created by award-winning musical composer Maestro Jesse Lucas, is the second touring musical. It presents the short life and turbulent times of the working class revolutionary Andres Bonifacio and his wife, Gregoria "Oryang" de Jesus, illustrating the evolution of the mass-based revolutionary organization, the role of women in the struggle, the internal conflicts that weakened it and the lessons that we realize and bring to heart.

Partners for this season are the e National Parks Development Committee, Ever Bilena, Skin Sanctuary and Aces and Pros.

For tickets and bookings, please call 9985622 or 8720261. Like us at

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