NOLI ME TANGERE A NEW MUSICAL Comes to Parramatta Riverside Theatres

By: Feb. 13, 2019
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NOLI ME TANGERE A NEW MUSICAL Comes to Parramatta Riverside Theatres

McFadden Music is proud to present Noli Me Tangere (Touch Me Not) A New Musical at Parramatta Riverside Theatres from 29 March - 6 April 2019. The musical is based on the beloved novel by Filipino national hero Dr José P. Rizal - a Filipino nationalist during the tail end of the Spanish colonial period of the Philippines.

José Rizal's Noli Me Tangere is widely known as the great novel of the Philippines.

A passionate love story set against a tragic and unforgiving political background of oppression, torture, and murder. 'The Noli' (as it is called in the Philippines) was the "first major artistic expression of Asian defiance to European colonialism". Subsequently, Rizal became a beacon of hope and model of strength for the revolution that would eventuate.

Noli Me Tangere A New Musical tells the tale of Crisostomo Ibarra, a mixed-race man who returns home after spending several years in Europe. Upon his homecoming, Ibarra's mind is filled with ideas about how to better the lives and futures of his people through education. He strives for societal reform but is confronted by the state of his country under the regimented and barbaric Spanish rule.

Ibarra plans to establish a new school in order to educate his people of the growing, detrimental impact of colonial influence. However, these plans are foiled upon discovery by Padre Damaso - the parish priest who refused to give Ibarra's father, Don Rafael, a Catholic burial and is intent on Ibarra's demise. Padre Damaso attempts all he can to excommunicate Ibarra from his community and keep him away from his true love, Maria Clara - the beautiful daughter of the wealthy Captain Tiago.

Throughout the performance Ibarra is faced with an onslaught of trials and tribulations as he strives to bring enlightenment to his people. He is faced with the ongoing and bitter internal conflict of whether he can achieve freedom for his people peacefully and release them from the shackles of colonial oppression through education or whether he must resort to violence to spur revolution.

Through this brilliant satire, Rizal paints a tragic picture of the long period of suffering that his beloved country endured. The story speaks volumes, not solely to Filipinos, but to all those who have experienced and endured the lasting effects of oppression.

Miguel Castro (Ibarra) and Susana Downes (Maria Clara) CLICK HERE FOR A MUSICAL SNEAK PEEK The show boasts an absolutely outstanding cast of both celebrated and emerging Filipino actors. Noli features the talents of Miguel Castro (The Filipino Tenors) who takes on the iconic lead role of Ibarra, with Susana Downes (Theatre & Company's The 25th Annual Putnam County Spelling Bee and If/Then) by his side as the strong and sweet Maria Clara - Ibarra's true love. The brilliant Marcus Rivera (Cameron Mackintosh's Miss Saigon, Opera Australia's The King and I) tackles the hard-hitting role of Elias, a rebel who befriends Ibarra whilst on the run. Also joining this stellar cast is Lena Cruz (Priscilla Queen of the Desert, All Saints) as Sisa, a mother in search of the truth about what became of her children.

Director Aarne Neeme (Blue Heelers, The Blue Angel Hotel) leads a spectacular team of creatives which includes the talents of Choreographer, Novy Bereber, Assistant Director Marcus Rivera, Producer, Peter Fleming and Music Director, Allan McFadden. Featuring incredible music and lyrics by Allan McFadden and book and lyrics by Peter Fleming, Noli Me Tangere is truly a force to be reckoned with in the Australian musical theatre scene.

"The music I've composed seeks to capture the beauty and the violence of the Filipino landscape, which has everything from volcanoes to the most gorgeous coastal resorts," McFadden says. One of the 24 songs he composed for the show, 'Sweet, Sweet Land' is "sung by the romantic lead, Maria Clara, and it's a love song to an entire country."

Noli Me Tangere is a traditional musical but tells a story which is completely fresh to an Australian audience. Lyricist Peter Fleming says "It's a beautiful love story overtaken by violence, and the show is full of the most romantic and thrilling music. It's a tragic musical in the tradition of West Side Story but set in a gorgeous world. Much of the sensibility of the Filipino nation comes out of this story." SEASON DETAILS

DATES: 30 March - 6 April 2019

PREVIEW: 29 March 2019

7:30PM Evening Performances - 29 - 30 March, 2 - 6 April
2:00PM Matinees - 30 March and 6 April

LOCATION: Riverside Theatres Parramatta,
Corner Church and Market Streets, NSW 2150

PRICE: Tickets from $35 + booking fees

RUNNING TIME: 2.5 hours (Incl. 20 minute interval)