Video: Watch Excerpt of LOUDER THAN WORDS from TICK, TICK…BOOM!

'tick, tick...BOOM!' plays at the Carlos P. Romulo Auditorium, RCBC Plaza, Makati, weekends of August.

By: Aug. 06, 2023
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“Why do we follow leaders who never lead?”

In a one-night-only encore of “Louder than Words,” the finale number from Jonathan Larson’s pre-“Rent,” “tick, tick…BOOM!” TV-film star (now theater actor) Khalil Ramos sang those lines, then faced the audience throwing a nudge and a wink—and we all knew what he meant.  Ironic.

Last Friday night (Aug. 4), 9 Works Theatrical held its “official last day of rehearsals,” words used by Jef Flores, who shares the lead role of Jon with Ramos, in “tick, tick…BOOM!” running on the weekends of August at the RCBC Plaza, Makati.

On preview night, the house was packed with theater people, celebrities, the media, and young audiences whose Netflix’s stage-to-film musical adaptation turned them into new fans of Larson’s relatively small body of work. Still, it has inspired generations post the ‘80s AIDS crisis to the present time.

At 35, Larson died in 1996, a day shy of the Off-Broadway premiere of “Rent,” his much-awaited first big hit.

A semi-autobiographical piece, “tick, tick…BOOM!” follows Jon, an aspiring Broadway musical theater composer still waiting for his first big break at 30. Jon’s girlfriend, Susan, wants to settle and move out of the big city. Jon’s best friend, Michael, enjoys a flourishing career in marketing-advertising.  While Jon still juggles waiting tables at the Moondance Diner in SoHo and the early production of his original musical “Superbia,” which remains unproduced in real life.

Some of the more popular show tunes from “tick, tick…BOOM!” are “30/90,” “No More,” “Come to Your Senses,” “Louder than Words,” and “Sunday.”

In this video excerpt of “Louder than Words,” listen and watch the cast led by Flores and Ramos, alongside Reb Atadero, Vien King, Kayla Rivera, and Tanya Manalang. Atadero and King alternate as Michael, and Manalang and Rivera alternate as Susan.

“tick, tick…BOOM!” is directed by Robbie Guevara, who also spearheaded 9 Works Theatrical’s production of the musical in 2016.

The musical features book, music, and lyrics by Larson; additional script by David Auburn; vocal arrangements and orchestrations by Stephen Oremus; scenography by Mio Infante; lighting design by Shakira Villa Symes; sound design by Bam Tiongson; hair and makeup by Myrene Santos; choreography by JM Cabling; and musical direction by Daniel Bartolome. 

9 Works Theatrical’s Santi Santamaria is the executive producer.

“tick, tick…BOOM!” was originally produced on Off-Broadway by Victoria Leacock, Robyn Goodman, Dede Harris, Lorie Cowen Levy, and Beth Smith.

In Manila, Atlantis Productions, headed by Broadway producer Bobby Garcia, premiered “tick, tick…BOOM!” in 2002, which starred Jett Pangan, Bituin Escalante, and Michael de Mesa.

BWW Video: Oliver Oliveros


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