IBALONG : Music, Monsters and Mayhem hits Manila


 Tanghalang Pilipino explores the world of Filipino myths and legends with a dance-theatre musical interpretation of the Bicolano epic, “Ibalong”.  Adapted for stage by playwright Rody Vera, the play is directed by Tuxqs Rutaquio with musical direction by Carol Bello and choreography by Alden Lugnasin.

 The underlying theme of this Bicol epic is about taking care of the environment, joining in the global concern for the future of the earth.Recreating an imaginary world and bringing the audience into it is a challenge that Director Rutaquio welcomes as he explores new themes beyond his contemporary “dark world” forte. He throws a bone to wet the audience appetite by telling us to watch out for the cutting of the monster’s tail scene as he foresees this to be the highlight of the show.

Entitled after Legazpi City’s week-long festivity, “Ibalong” the musical tells the story of Handyong and his warriors who come to Bicol – formerly known as Ibalon – and wage war against beasts and monsters pillaging the land’s natural wealth. Handyong mightily battles creatures bearing a solitary eye and three throats, several winged sharks, and wild carabaos.

In introducing civilization to the barbaric land, Handyong matches wit and might with the scheming snake, Oryol.  A master of deceit, Oryol disguises herself into a sweet, young lady in order to seduce Handyong. But not to be outwitted, Handyong eventually makes Oryol fall in love with him.

Their love story – between a warrior and a monster – defines the greatness of Bicol as it explores an individual’s capacity for good and evil, and a land’s history marked by progress and destruction.

With elaborate costumes, energetic fight choreography, and haunting music, IBALONG guarantees audiences of all ages an enthralling experience rarely seen in original Filipino theatre.

The cast of IBALONG include Jenine Desiderio – Oryol; May Bayot – Gugurang; Myke Salomon – Handyong; Red Nuestro – Opon; Delphine Buencamino – Koro / Understudy Oryol; Trixie Esteban – Young Oryol / Koro; Cheeno Macaraig – Young Handyong / Makusog / Kawal/ibingan; Tara Cabaero – Buring/Anino; Hazel Maranan – Onglo/Anino; Opaline Santos – Sarimao/Anino; Kristofer Kliatchko -Angongolood/Kawal; Cyril Balderama – Sarimao/Kawal; and Philip Palmos – Kikik.

The ensemble is composed of TP’s Actor’s Company featuring Jonathan Tadioan – Aswang / Koro; Marco Viaña –            Rabot/Koro; Remus Villanueva – Handyong / Kawal/Angongolood; Nicolo Magno –          Baltog / Koro; Ralph Mateo -Bantong / Kalabaw/ Tambaluslos/Kawal; Regina De Vera – Bonggo/Anino; Jovanni Cadag -Sarimao ; and Doray Dayao – Popo/Anino.

Nanding Josef, Artistic Director of  Tanghalang Pilipino cited that this production which is being done in cooperation with the Cultural Center of the Philippines (CCP) and the City of Legazpi of Bicol, is a special offering to the Bicolanos and the rest of the Filipino people who are committed to protecting our natural resources and cultural heritage from the onslaught of irresponsible commercialism, modernization, frenetic world trade and homogenizing globalization —- all hiding under the name of human progress and development, but in reality, are all motivated by self-centered motives and selfish interests of the greedy, materialistic, powerful evil creatures of this earth which was originally created by the Supreme Being only for everything that is good, true and beautiful.

The artistic team of IBALONG is led by Nanding Josef  ( Artistic Director ), Rody Vera ( Playwright ); Tuxqs Rutaquio ( Director/Set Designer ); Carol Bello (Composer/Musical Director ); Rizalino Reyes & Inkantada, All-Women Group (Arranger );  Leeroy New ( Costume & Puppet Designer ); Alden Lugnasin (Choreographer ); Katsch Catoy ( Lights Designer and Technical Director ) and   TJ Ramos ( Sound Designer ).

The production team is composed of Jennifer Bautista ( Production Manager ),  Alpha Joy Ruiz ( Deputy Production Manager ),  Jo  Ann Requiestas( Assistant Production Manager ), Jerome Aytona ( Stage Manager ), Noel Taylo and Eric Sindol ( Assistant Stage Managers ), Daniel Gregorio ( Costume Custodian ), Zaldy Baldelobar ( Property Master ), Raphael David (Make-Up and Prosthetic Artist ), and Jerry Ramirez ( Stunt Choreography ).

The Marketing / Sales, and publicity group is led by Cherry Bong Z. Edralin ( Marketing Manager ), Toots Tolentino ( Publicist ), Jojit Lorenzo ( Photography ), Carlo Vergara  ( Poster Design ),  Joan Abubo ( Ticket Officer ),   Lorelei Celestino ( Marketing & Sales Associate ) and Juan Lorenzo Marco ( Sales Executive ).

IBALONG opens with a gala premiere on February 8 – 8 p.m. at the Tanghalang Aurelio V. Tolentino, Cultural Center of the Philippines. The musical will run until March 3, 2013.

The schedule of performances of IBALONG are as follows: ( Fri ) February 8, 15, 22, March 1, 2013 at 8:00 pm; ( Sat ) February 9, 16, 23, March 2, 2013 at 3:00 pm and 8:00 pm; ( Sun ) February 10, 17, 24, March 3, 2013 at 3:00 pm.

Ticket prices are: P 800.00 ( regular ); P 400.00 ( students ) and P 640.00 (for senior citizens — 20% discount on the regular price)

For  the  Feb.  8  gala  night, tickets  are  at  P 1,000.00  ( regular );  P 500.00  ( students ) and P 800.00 ( for senior citizens — 20% discount on the regular price.

Tickets are now available at all TicketWorld Outlets.  Call TicketWorld at 891-9999  and CCP Box Office at 832-3704.

For inquiries on ticket reservations, group sales, sponsorships, special performances, call Tanghalang Pilipino at 832-1125 local 1620/1621 or contact Cherry Bong Z. Edralin at 0917-750-0107, 0918-959-3949 for more details.

Visit their website at www.tanghalangpilipino.org.ph or E-mail us at ccptanghalan@yahoo.com or cherry_edralin888@yahoo.com.

Support  Tanghalang Pilipino’s contribution to save our planet, our environment, and our cultural heritage.


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