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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.

Aug 31, 2017

Director Joel Lamangan Turns Award-Winning Film Classic, 'Maynila: Sa Mga Kuko Ng Liwanag', Into A Musical Play With Songs By Von De Guzman

DIRECTOR JOEL LAMANGAN is busy with three new movies, “Bes and the Beshies” with Ai Ai de las Alas, “This Time Will Be Sweeter” with Barbie Forteza and “The Significant Other” with Lovi Poe, but apparently, they’re not enough to satisfy him and he wants to be busier, so he’s now directing the stage version of the late Lino Brocka’s classic award-winning film, “Maynila: Sa Mga Kuko ng Liwanag” that was based on the novel of the late Edgar Reyes and catapulted Bembol Roco to stardom in 1975 as the ill-fated Julio Madiaga.

The coveted role of Julio was first offered to Sam Concepcion and Michael Pangilinan but they’re not available so it now goes to a relatively unknown newcomer, Arman Ferrer, a classically trained singer who has appeared at the CCP’s “Mabining Mandirigma”. Shiela Martinez (wife of Lorenz, son of Leo) and Lara Maigue (singer-composer who has done shows with TV5) will alternate as Ligaya Paraiso, the female lead played before by Hilda Koronel.

Joel says they stuck more closely to the original novel than the film version which had homosexuality in it. “‘Maynila’ is close to my heart as it’s my first movie bilang artista,” he adds. “It’s about exploitation of the poor, lalo yung mga tagaprobinsiyang nakikipagsapalaran sa siyudad.”

Other name stars who play important roles in the movie are Dulce, Ima Castro, Rafa Siguion Reyna,

Aicelle Santos, Rita Daniela, Jim Pebanco, Khalil Kaimo and many more. The music and songs were written by the award-winning musical director Von de Guzman, with choreography by Douglas Nierras.

Compared to the imported musical plays we’ve been seeing lately, “Maynila” is an original homegrown piece so it’s a theatre event that should not be missed by all musical theatre aficionados. It will be shown at Kia Theatre on September 30 (3 pm and 8 pm) , October 1, 3:00pm and 8:00 pm, October 4, 8:00pm, October 5, 8:00 pm, October 6, 2017 3:00pm and 8:00 pm. For ticket inquiries, contact Ms. Bards Lapid at mobile number 0917-8466704, landlines 897 7142. 890 0853, 890 6067 or Ticketnet at 9115555.