Monday, January 20, 2014

Wait Until Dark: An Impressive Thriller That Truly Shines Out Amidst a Dark Theater Setting

Wazzup Pilipinas!

To start off its 2014 season, Repertory Philippines proudly brings us a Frederick Knott suspense thriller entitled "Wait Until Dark".

Liesl Batucan, from the recent Alice in Wonderland, was truly impressive as a blind housewife named Suzy that was being terrorized by shady individuals that were in search of a musical doll that was apparently filled with the dangerous and prohibited substance known as heroin.. Her husband Sam, played by Lorenz Martinez, also fresh from the Lorenzo the Musical play, mistakenly transported the doll from Amsterdam into their home in London.Suzy, with a little help from the neighbor kid Gloria played by Daniella Gana, must now rely on her cunning instincts, making use of her other vital senses and her strength within the darkness, to outwit the strangers.

The con men played by Arnel Carrion as Harry Roat Jr., Joel Trinidad as Mike Trenton, and Robbie Guevarra as Crocker had distinctively unique personalities that effectively shined out making them really distinguishable among each other. 

Suzy played by Liesl Batucan and Gloria played by Daniella Gana

The emotional energy of Liesl all throughout the play was strikingly unrelenting. She definitely exhibited an uncompromising motivation to deliver such an impeccable acting.

I adored the relationship that developed between Joel and Liesl. There is undoubtedly something going on between the two - a connection that the audience has somehow realized especially at the latter part of the show.

I was amazed at how Arnel made his character a real domineering bad guy. It was reported that he was supposed to play the role of Sam but an accident with the original actor made the production to upgrade his role to Roat instead. With only 6 days to memorize the script and internalize the character of Roat, Arnel was an awesome replacement.

There is no denying that Arnel was also a scene-stealer at the play that he got a lot of our attention as a very powerful bad guy. His voice was as stunningly commanding as his superb acting. he might as well stole the limelight from Liesl.

Liesl Batucan with the three con men played by Joel Trinidad, Robbie Guevarra and Arnel Carrion

Robbie's humorous acting especially with how he kept on cleaning up his fingerprints with his handkerchief throughout the play gave the show a much appreciated comical factor. 

Lorenz, taken in only 6 days before the start of the first run, now plays Sam. He may have quite a small role, but was still believable as an affectionate husband for the Suzy character. They should give him a longer role, but regardless if they are strictly following the original script, he was still an essential character for the play.

Daniella probably had a lot of fun throwing everything she can grab from the kitchen, and was especially a crucial character to help the Suzy character cope up with the threatening scenario. 

One of the more thrilling scenes in Wait Until Dark where Suzy struggles against Roat. Her character eventually overcomes her fear, and uses the darkness to her advantage.

The play takes advantage of John Batalla's lighting expertise to give a sort of eerie environment to add tension to the climactic scenes. The sounds by Jethro Joaquin also played an important factor to add a more suspenseful feel to the acts. Regards also to Toff De Venecia as the Assistant Director for helping Miguel Faustmann to the realization of such truly stellar performances from the actors.

The play shows us that our weaknesses or disabilities can become our greatest asset to somehow fight off the dangers in our life. It also helps us realize that our strongest allies may come from the people we least expect.

Kudos to Miguel, the brilliant director of the play, for giving us another gem that truly shines out amidst the dark theater setting.

I am glad I attended the media preview held last January 17.
This play is something different from the usual shows of Repertory Philippines. I would definitely recommend this to my friends, relatives and colleagues.


Watch the remaining show dates at Onstage Greenbelt:

Gala Shows at 8 pm: January 24, 25, 31 and February 1,7, 8,

Matinee shows at 3:30 pm : January 25, 26 and February 1, 2, 8, 9

For Tickets: Call Ticketworld at 891-9999 or log on to

You can also check out their Facebook page for updates:

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