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PETA tackles role of broadcast media as 45th Theater Season opens

PETA’s hit Shakespeare rap musical ‘William’ will have a special re-run this July.

MANILA, Philippines—Ever since its founding years, the Philippine Educational Theater Association (PETA) has been intrinsically linked to broadcast media arts.

Founder Cecile Guidote wrote:  “Theater does not solely refer to the legitimate stage, which has been a powerful influence on human civilization for 2500 years. But also includes it’s amazing twentieth century offspring—film, radio, and television.

She envisioned the presentation of “outstanding plays and master pieces on television and radio. Broadcast media could be a powerful social force that would bring a quality cultural experience to millions of Filipinos.”

For PETA’s 45th Theater Season, PETA goes back to this founding idea and further interrogates the role of broadcast media in contemporary Philippine society.

PETA dedicates an entire year of examining the historical, cultural, and aesthetic relationship between the two media forms and how both have affected and shaped modern-day society and popular culture. The season will illustrate the interrelationship of live performance and the broadcast media.

PETA also seizes the opportunity of its 45th Theater Season to draw attention to the community in which it resides — Quezon City. Considered by many as the City of Stars, Quezon City is home to major TV networks, movie producing companies and theater groups, cradling some of most influential players in Philippine pop culture. The season hopes to harness this power through its productions and related events and in so doing create an awareness of the vital role the arts play in the formation of society and its ethos.

Through original plays as well as other related events PETA invites its audience on a  journey that explores the “hybrid” multiplicity that is the Arts. PETA brings together talents from the Philippine theater, film and television industries in two of its new plays: “Bona” and “D Wonder Twins of Boac”.

Eugene Domingo as Bona.

“Bona”, a film by National Artist and PETA founding member, Lino Brocka, will be adapted for theater and set in contemporary time, while “D Wonder Twins of Boac” (a Filipino musical adaptation of William Shakespeare’s Twelfth Night) will be a parody of how the Filipino film industry evolved in the 60’s and 70’s.

PETA’s theater event “TAKE 1” inspired by Lino Brocka’s actor-training practice is a collaboration between theater and television. Brocka always believed that the theater performance experience was a necessary part of any film actor’s training background. With this in mind PETA designed “TAKE 1″ as a concert of scenes  that will  draw from the best plays of world classics as well as Filipino original works. For four nights, audiences will be delighted to witness familiar scenes performed by different sets of actors from television and theater.

Apart from the two new plays, PETA opens its doors to a new generation of filmmakers with a festival “Cinemalaya Retrospective” that features the best short and full-length films produced by Cinemalaya in the past five years.

Rounding up the season’s offerings, PETA’s hit musicals will have a special re-run at the PETA Theater Center this year: “William” from July 27-29, “Batang Rizal” from August 3-12 and “Mga Kuwento ni Lola Basyang” from October 5 to 14 this year. PETA also hosts Agnes Locsin’s choreographed work “Puno”, Noel Cabangon’s concert “Tuloy ang Byahe”, Vincent De Jesus’ Himala (The Concert) and Storybook Theater for Education Project’s (STEP) “Buklat”.


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