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Mario Bautista, has been with the entertainment industry for more than 4 decades. He writes regular columns for People's Journal and Malaya.

Jul 15, 2014

Becca Godinez Brings Hit U.S. Play, 'Flipzoids', To Music Museum In Manila

THE PLAY ‘FLIPZOIDS’ by Ralph Pena was first staged in Off Broadway New York in 1996. Set in 1985, it’s about three Filipino immigrants who have different attitudes about their life in American. Aying is a 72-year old Ilocana from Pagudpud who just wants to return home. Her daughter Vangie is a nurse who wants to speak with an American accent and finds her mom an embarassment. Redford came to the U.S. as a young boy, has no memory of the Philippines and feels alienated.

The play won awards and was successfuly restaged in October last year in Los Angeles, directed by Jon Lawrence Rivera. Playing Aying is Becca Godinez, who has now brought the play to Manila to be staged for three nights at the Music Museum starting at 8 tonight, Thursday, until this Saturday.

Becca is a theatre actress with Repertory Philippines in the 80s who recorded an album for Vicor and also did TV hosting. In 1982, she married Morris Albert, who did the hit song “Feelings”. Their daughter Natasha was born in 1983. She’s now 31, also sings and writes songs, and is about to marry a Scottish-American guy who’s 6’4”. They left for Brazil in 1985 (Morris is Brazilian) but stayed in Rio for only a year as Becca got a recording deal for Morris in Los Angeles. The marriage didn’t last. They got divorced in 1989.

Becca found romance anew in Benito Miranda, who’s from Cebu, and they got married in 1995. Benito has a daughter who Natasha now treats as her own sister. For ten years, she didn’t talk to Morris. “I need to heal,” she says. “But now, we’re the best of friends. He stays with us whenever he’s in the U.S. His family is close to my family.”

Becca got rave reviews for her portrayal of Aying in L.A. One critic said she’s “mesmerizing, hilarious and heartbreaking”. Other comments: “she inhabits her role with natural ease”, “she is delightful in so many ways and gives a grand life to the character,” “she played Aying as real flesh and blood”.

Becca brought her original co-actors in the play to Manila: Ellen D. Williams as Aying’s daughter and Maxwel Corpus as Redford. Ellen has a Pinay mom from Leyte and an American dad of English-Irish descent. She appeared on TV playing the role of Patrice in 12 episodes of the hit comedy “How I Met Your Mother”. She has done many plays like the cult musical “Moby Dick: A Whale of a Tale” produced by Cameron Mackintosh, “Ruby, Tragically Rotund”, “Dusty de los Santos” and “Bloodletting”. Maxwell was born and raised in California and it’s his first time in Manila. He has performed in plays like “The 25th Putnam Annual Spelling Bee”, “Miss Saigon”, “Batboy” and “Song for a New World”. Being able to perform in Manila is a dream come true for him.

Directing the play is Jon Lawrence Rivera who is artistic director and co-found of the Playwrights Arena in Hollywood, California. Rivera says the play was updated in 2011 and now has a different ending than the original. Don’t miss this wonderful and uplifting theatre experience. You can get your tickets at the Music Museum ticket booth.