Photos: HIMALA: ISANG MUSIKAL In Rehearsal; Show Opens 20 Sept.
The Sandbox Collective and 9 Works Theatrical are bringing back their highly acclaimed revival of Himala: Isang Musikal.
Manila, Philippines - Rehearsals began for The Sandbox Collective and 9 Works Theatrical upcoming restaging of Himala: Isang Musikal, Ricky Lee (book and lyrics) and Vincent De Jesus' (music and lyrics) multi-awarded musical based on one of the greatest Filipino films of all time, Himala.
An alternate for the role of Nanay Saling, London's West End alumna Sheila Francisco recalls the first time she watched the show: "I was just paralyzed. The truth of the message of Himala was just so real that I couldn't stop sobbing from where I was seated.
"If somebody will also feel the way I felt the last time, it means that we've done something good. Himala hits you in the face with what's real and what's happening right now."
Based on the alleged Marian apparitions on Cabra Island, Occidental Mindoro in 1966, Himala: Isang Musikal follows the story of a young woman named Elsa who claims to have miraculous healing powers bestowed on her by Mary, the mother of Jesus.
Tanghalang Pilipino, the Cultural Center of the Philippines' resident theater company, staged the original production of the musical in 2003, which starred May Bayot-de Castro as Elsa. In this restaging, Bayot-de Castro shares the role of Nanay Saling with Francisco.
They will be joined by new and returning cast members: Aicelle Santos (Elsa), Celine Fabie (Elsa), Kakki Teodoro (Nimia), Neomi Gonzales (Chayong), David Ezra (Orly), Floyd Tena (Pari), Vic Robinson (Pilo), Sandino Martin (Pilo), Jon Abella, Pamela Imperial, and Red Nuestro.
Completing this year's cast are Roxy Aldiosa, Sigrid Balbas, Gene Barsaga, Jay Barrameda, Patricia Bermudez, Raflesia Bravo, Joshua Cabiladas, Dannielle Cruz, Christian Cusi, Katreen Dela Cruz, Angelo Esperanzate, Marielle Estalani, Mano Domingo, Kits Falcis, Jef Flores, Nel Gumalog, Jasper Jimenez, Gary Junsay, Glenda Liao, Alvin Maghanoy, Roby Malubay, Hazel Maranan, Eizel Marcelo, Nathan Molina, Ivan Panganiban, Matel Patayon, Cristy Peredo, Neil Tolentino, Onyl Torres, and Jenny Villegas.
The show's creative team has Ed Lacson Jr., director and set designer; Vincent De Jesus, composer, lyricist, and musical director; Ricky Lee, book writer and lyricist; Barbie Tan-Tiongo, lighting designer; Carlo Pagunaling, costume designer; Jed Balsamo, music consultant; JM Cabling, assistant director, and Ejay Yatco, assistant musical director.
The Sandbox Collective and 9 Works Theatrical are represented by Toff de Venecia, Santi Santamaria, Sab Jose, Maine Manalansan, Erwin Romulo, Charyl de Guzman, Jonjon Martin, and Mara Agleham.
Photos: The Sandbox Collective, 9 Works Theatrical
Neomi Gonzales, Aicelle Santos
Aicelle Santos, Neomi Gonzales
The Company with Vincent De Jesus