VIDEO: Tanghalang Pilipino's KATSURI Opens; Show Runs Now Thru 27 Oct.
Katsuri aims to bring light to the issue of last year's massacre of sugar workers from Sagay City, Negros Occidental.
Manila, Philippines - Renowned screenwriter Bibeth Orteza adapts John Steinbeck's 1937 novella Of Mice And Men. Her husband, Carlos Siguion-Reyna, an award-winning filmmaker, directs this must-see production - renamed as Katsuri (Shrew) - for Tanghalang Pilipino.
The production officially opened last Friday, 4 Oct., at the Cultural Center of the Philippines' Tanghalang Huseng Batute (CCP Studio Theatre).
The play tells the story of George (Marco Viana) and Toto (Jonathan Tadioan), farmhands and long-time best friends. After running into trouble in Hacienda Luisita in Tarlac, they travel to Negros Occidental to harvest sugar cane where they meet other sakadas.
Besides Marco and Jonathan, Katsuri also features Doray Dayao (Atorni/Ensemble), Eunice Pacia (Monang/Ensemble), Fitz Bitana (Kulot/Ensemble), JV Ibesate (Payat/Ensemble), Lhorvie Nuevo (Carling/Ensemble), Monique Nellas (Woman/Ensemble), Michael Williams (Boss), Nanding Josef (Tatang), Antonette Go (Inday/Ensemble), and Ybes Bagadiong (Nognog/Ensemble).
"Working on Of Mice And Men from English to Filipino, this translator felt that what was going on in Negros Occidental just couldn't be ignored, especially after the assassination of Toto Patigas, activist and Bayan Muna candidate for Escalante City councilor, in the last elections," said Orteza in her programme notes.
"Hence the decision to set this version in Negros. John Steinbeck, the author of the novella of the same title on which he based his play, chronicler of lives of the downtrodden and the oppressed, would have agreed."
The show's creative team includes Ohm David, set designer; Dennis Marasigan, lighting designer; TJ Ramos, sound designer; Daniel Gregorio, and costume designer.
Video: Oliver Oliveros