What made Filipinas: 1941 (Isang Dulayawit) deeply engrossing was the fact that it valued the bondage of family and friendships, the great relationship between two brothers caught-up in the midst of war, and the very personal message of hope that existed when people never gave-up on love against all odds.
But, there’s more into it. What we saw were young people who still looked so beautiful even when they executed scenes of great horror, discomfort and torture. Even when the hardships of each of the scenes did aggravate them- they all still looked so beautiful ONSTAGE. That’s so mesmerizing. And fascinating.
It seldom happened. Mainstream stars on movies and TV avoid doing scenes of ugliness that would make them “messy” to look at. And movie and TV directors knew that. Fans would be left angry when they saw their idols looking ugly with great discomfort and uneasiness.
On the theater side, it would be not an excuse. They needed to do those awkward scenes, they needed to make their faces elastic and knotting.
With other theater productions, what we saw were real “ugliness” and all. The actors seemed like a “turn-off” when they did those awkward scenes.
But with the Stagers of Philippine Stagers Foundation, it was the other way around. We found them still looking all so beautiful despite those heavy awkward scenes of death, torture, pain and delicate body movements.
How could it be?
We soon found one redeeming answer: that, BEAUTY IS WITHIN.
When an actor seemed like to be a wet face towel that you could squeeze so much juice on it, that actor has transgressed into something eternal. Unleashing the qualms and the attitude, humbling his profound self, journeying more deeply into his artistic craft.
Maybe, other theater actors of other theater companies didn’t really acquire the beauty “within”, that’s why they really looked ugly when they did those awkward scenes. But with the Stagers of PSF, the inner glow shone much brighter despite the awkwardness, the demands and the absurdity.
One blogger said this one time during a kick-off party of the PSF’ers:
“You all looked so beautiful onstage even when the scenes were demanding and taxing”, the blogger quipped. “And it simply added more delight to the audience.”
The Stagers of PSF were composed mostly of raw talents- young and hopeful- which Mr. Vince Tanada (the Creative Director and actor) enhanced into full mobility. This could be the secret.
But we’d say more. It’s the honesty of a given TASK that mattered. It’s the transparency. The genuineness.
Young warriors of the arts survives not because of the money and the benefits. They survive by the SOUL.
And that made the STAGERS a lot more different from the rest.
(words by robert manuguid silverio)
WITH PHOTOS BY: MR. JV CRUZ, MR. VINO ORIARTE, ROPER STUDIO AND MS. TRIXIE DAUZ