Monday, January 4, 2010

ANAK NG PALIG! (November 23, 2009)

November 15 saw us caught in an approach-approach conflict.
After coming from our panganay Psalma's Sports Day – when her Team Ruby won – we were torn between fetching her Ina at the airport and judging for Palig 2009.
Though we missed the former, who attended the Workshop on Mental Health System Development for the Severe Mental Illness in Asian Countries in Taiwan, still we opted to heed the latter's song as if from our favorite group, Apolinario Mabini Hiking Society, that got its name from AMHS, or Ateneo de Manila High School!
Coming from a Dominican-run university, we had to consult their “Jesuitic historian,” Jonathan Balsamo, who is behind the website of the oldest school-based multimedia contest!
An important part of Jesuit pedagogy, theater had been empowering students and teachers in contributing to their total formation.
Ask Jose Rizal.
His play Junto al Pasig” (By the Pasig) was born in Ateneo during the Feast of the Immaculate Conception in 1880, six years after the so-called first play El Puñal del Godo (The Dagger of the Goth) was staged there in 1874.
Even since, plays were in Spanish until American Jesuits took over and took in Merchant of Venice (1910), Richard III 1917), and Julius Caesar (1921).
When they transferred from Ermita to Loyola Heights in 1952, they transformed their theater arts, too.
In 1955, the Ateneo High School Dramatics Society (AHSDS) started introducing other Shakespearean plays in English such as Macbeth and Hamlet.
It was through Onofre Pagsanghan when language shift happened in 1966 when Francisco “Soc” Rodrigo wrote Paa ng Kuwago (adapted from W. Jacobs' The Monkey’s Paw) and Sangkuwaltang Abakan (translation of Julian Cruz Balmaceda's Sino Ba Kayo? from Bicolnon in 1943).
This experiment -- that happened at the Ateneo Law School auditorium in Padre Faura in Manila – inspired AHSDS to rename itself -- Dulaang Sibol (DS).
From classroom to audio-visual room, DS blazed the trail in 1966 via adaptations until, after a year, when they wrote original plays in Filipino.
By way of a drama competition known as Palig!
After discovering landmarks, it had been re-discovering new ones after, say, Hoy Boyet Hatinggabi Na’y Gising Ka Pa Pala by Tony Perez and Puting Tigmamanukin by Paul Dumol who judged with us and whose Ang Paglilitis ni Mang Serapio was made into film by Khavn de la Cruz, another Palig alumnus.
We got lucky to witness raw yet rebellious talents.
From Timpalak-Awit that was initiated in 1975 to its present format formalized in 1991 as Timpalak sa Sabayang Pagbigkas for freshies (led by 1-O), Timpalak sa Dulang Panradyo for sophomores (headed by 2-A's Sa Hantungan ng Nazareno), Timpalak sa Dulang Pantanghalan for juniors (topped by 3C's Bangayan), and Timpalak sa Maikling Pelikula for seniors (dominated by 4L's Kapatid).
Among them, Miguel “Miggy” Azurin, who became the Best Actor (with his classmate Kevin Lopez-Vito from 3K and J.P. Tiongco and Nico Odulio from 3A) and the Best Writer who won the Best Music Award (with his tokayo Miguel Feria) for their musical Barbero de Primero.
Writers' Bloc opened its door to them for its workshop and, perhaps, for its Virgin Labfest 2010.
Speaking of the said playwrights' organization, Nick Pichay and Rody Vera served as reactors last Saturday with Glecy Atienza, Joey Baquiran, Judy Ick, Bobet Mendoza, Lulu Torres-Reyes, and Tito Valiente, in Tanghalan! sponsored by The Teatro Sambisig, Inc. and the National Commission for Culture and the Arts' Committee on Dramatic Arts.
Like the concert of Maguindanao kudyapi master Samaon Sulaiman at the Conspiracy Garden Cafe last November 19, we missed it last Saturday at the NCCA Building in Intramuros.
Another Palig 2009 judge, Ricky Abad of Tanghalang Ateneo, joined other artists Reuel Aguila, Walter Ang, Tessa Belleza, Frederick Castro, Alexander Cortez, Dennis Marasigan, Manny Pambid, Al Santos, and Corazon Villareal during this Philippine theater aesthetics discussion.
Also, characterizing the dynamics of literary and performative artistry is the Cultural Center of the Philippines' Ani Literary Journal.
On November 26, 6 p.m. at the CCP, Ramp its editor and managing editor, Herminio Beltran, Jr. and Betty Uy-Regala, will launch its latest edition.
Ani 35, or The Pinoy As Asian, features works of Mark Angeles, Lilia Antonio, Mae Aquino, Genevieve Asenjo, Abdon Balde, Jr., Janet Batuigas, Gil Beltran, Kristoffer Berse, Jimple Borlagdan, Raymond Calbay, Catherine Candano, Nonon Carandang, Christoffer Cerda, Joey Chua, Kristian Cordero, Genaro Cruz, Carlomar Daoana, Arvin Ello, Dennis Espada, Rogerick Fernandez, Reparado Galos III, Luis Gatmaitan, Joscephine Gomez, Malou Jacob, Ferdinand Jarin, Karla Javier, Phillip Kimpo, Jr., Ed Labao, Gexter Lacambra, Erwin Lareza, Jeffrey Lubang, Glenn Mas, Perry Mangilaya, Noahlyn Maranan, Francisco Monteseña, Ruth Mostrales, Jose Ogatis-I, Wilhelmina Orozco, Francisco Peñones, Jr., Scott Sabóy, Judith Balares Salamat, Edgar Samar, Louie Jon Sanchez, Soliman Santos, Dinah Roma-Sianturi, Rakki Sison-Buban, Jason Tabinas, Vincent Tan, Dolores Taylan, Rosario Torres-Yu, Camilo Villanueva, Jr., and yours truly.Similarly, ITIM ASU 1719-2009, awaits you from November 26 to 28, 8 p.m., at Dance Forum Space in Quezon City.
Directed and choreographed by Myra Beltran -- this dance and multi media production based on Virginia Moreno’s The Onyx Wolf / Itim Asu -- will highlight University of the Philippines Dance Company with Marielle Alonzo and Reagan Cornelio, videoworks by Sherad Anthony Sanchez and sound design by Teresa Barrozo.
Last Saturday, once more we were trapped in a dilemma: Psalma's Card Day at the U.P. Integrated School and her brother Wika's Family Day at Claret, plus her sister Sulat's Hinabing Haraya with her Raya School classmates at the U.P. College of Music's Abelardo Hall.
Or was it a trilemma?
But, this time, Ina was in her Caring for the Special Child class at U.P. Open University while we got back from the Forward Awareness Days 2009 at the University of San Jose Recoletos!
There in Cebu City, three nights ago, while all alone in the Talavera House of Prayer, we suddenly felt empty as a bad barber's shop, without such meaningful connectedness.
Anak ng Palig!
People say "Bless you" when you sneeze because when you sneeze, your heart stops for a millisecond.
Faith is believing in something you cannot see or hear something deep inside that only you understand and only you control.

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