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Photos: KATY! Enters Last Weekend; Rave Reviews Pour In

Photos: KATY! Enters Last Weekend; Rave Reviews Pour In Manila, Philippines, July 31, 2013--It is the last call for KATY!, the Filipino landmark musical, which is playing its final five performances at Meralco Theater (Ortigas Ave., Pasig City, Metro Manila) from Friday, August 2, to Sunday, August 4.

KATY!, starring Isay Alvarez (Katy), Aicelle Santos (teen Katy) and Leana Tabuñar (kid Katy), is based on the illustrious career and life of Katy de la Cruz, hailed as the Queen of Filipino Jazz and Bodabil.

Featuring the toe-topping, infectious and melodious music by Maestro Ryan Cayabyab, and the high-spirited fun, heart-pulling book and lyrics by Jose Javier Reyes, "KATY!, directed by Nestor U. Torre, who also directed its original production in 1989, joyously brings back audiences to the vaudeville era at around the beginning of the American occupation of the Philippines, where dela Cruz shone the brightest, and was the then highest paid entertainer.

The critics agree as well.

Rome Jorge of writes, "'Katy! The Musical' evokes her era not only through costumes, music and narrative, but also in its highly mannered delivery. Its aesthetic sensibilities--be they humor, song, dialogue or moral perspective--reflect the play's bygone era.

"That is why when a touch of the contemporary spices up the play--a rare expletive peppering an otherwise wholesome dialogue or characters rolling along on shoes with hidden wheels at the heel--the surprise is all the more jolting yet pleasant.

"Shining brightest are the actresses who play Katy: Isay Alvarez, Aicelle Santos and Leana Tabunar."

Francis Christian Lubag of says, "Nestor Torre's direction successfully brings the intent and sentiment to life as he captains a demanding ship and stellar crew. This is the third time that Katy has been staged and the fact that it is rightfully dubbed as one of the best Filipino musicals ever put on stage is a foolproof testament to his effectiveness...

Photos: KATY! Enters Last Weekend; Rave Reviews Pour In "The songs are in itself something to watch out for. The lyrics and melody are so beautifully written and rendered; both perfectly reflect the emotion and sentiment of the characters and the art form they represent. From renditions of the deeply affecting Ang Entablado Ay Mundo and Minsan ang Minahal ay Ako, the patriotic Luha sa Kinalimutang Lupa to the energetic Sari-Saring Babae and Aba, Ba, Ba, Boogie, each song is something that music lovers will surely remember. I wish someone would commission an official soundtrack album for this production because these songs are what Original Pilipino Music is really all about: sincerity."

In Tagalog, Mark Angelo Ching of Pep.Ph says, "Isa lamang ang 'Minsan Ang Minahal Ay Ako' sa mga dahilan kung bakit dapat panoorin ang 'Katy! The Musical,' na muling ipinalalabas ngayon sa Meralco Theater mula July 26 hanggang August 4. Espesyal ito dahil ipinapakita nito ang kasaysayan ng sining pan-teatro sa Pilipinas, mula sa bodabil hanggang sa pagdating ng pelikula.

"Tatlong aktres ang gumanap sa papel na Katy: sina Leana Tabuñar bilang batang Katy, si Aicelle Santos, at Isay Alvarez. Pare-parehong magagaling ang nasabing mga artista, at kagila-gilalas isipin na nakuha ng tatlo ang pare-parehong kilos at istilo ng pagkanta, kaya naman naging kapani-paniwala na iisang taong lamang ang kanilang ginagampanan.

"Tunay ding magagaling ang mga kasamang artista ng tatlo, lalo na sina Tirso Cruz III bilang ama ni Katy; Gian Magdangal bilang asawa ni Katy na si Peping; at si Dulce bilang Olivia, na karibal ni Katy."

KATY! presents ensemble singing and tap dancing; and promises its audience with brisk and swinging renditions of jazz, Broadway, vaudeville and cabaret-type musical numbers.

"It has been a challenge as soon as our producers decided that I would be portraying the role, but I embrace it. Katy was truly committed to her craft that no matter what situation she found herself back then she would still give her 100%," Alvarez, in a previous interview, told

"I am moved by how this woman managed to give her all even in the midst of going through two deaths--the death of her father and the death of her husband," she added.

KATY!, a production of Spotlight Artists Centre, also features triple-threat thespians Lou Veloso, Epy Quizon, Tricia Amper-Jimenez, China Cojuangco, Vincent Evangelista, Andy Bais, Poppert Bernadas, Sheng Belmonte, CJ Mangahis, Celine Beatrice Fabie, Heidi Arima, Sheenly Gener, Neomi Gonzales, Gimbey dela Cruz and Bong Cabrera, among others.

For last weekend tickets, visit

Photos Credit: Bernard Beltran Cruzata and Tcel Maramag

Isay Alvarez

Tirso Cruz III

Gian Magdangal, Aicelle Santos

Spotlight Artists Centre presents KATY!

Spotlight Artists Centre presents KATY!

Aicelle Santos

Gian Magdangal, Aicelle Santos, Tirso Cruz III

Epy Quizon


Isay Alvarez

Spotlight Artists Centre presents KATY!

Isay Alvarez

Isay Alvarez, Tirso Cruz III

Poppert Bernadas, Isay Alvarez, Vincent Evangelista

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