Words by Hannah Angelique Bacani
Photos by Rianna Bernabe
In time with the commemoration of the 46th anniversary of the declaration of Martial Law last September 21st, the Philippine Educational Theater Association (PETA) welcomed its 51st season with its campaign for democracy, the “State of the Nation.” This nine-month long campaign aims to make the stage a platform to raise social and political awareness, as well as engage the audience and the artists into conversations and discussions regarding the state of our nation.
Isang Magsasaka, Dalawang Panginoon performed by Jonel Revistual of Words Anonymous
With the country’s current political and social climate, the stage is PETA’s way of breaking the walls that divide the country between colors, beliefs, and labels. The shows in PETA’s 51st season will also be followed by debriefings, which would allow the audience to engage in a face-to-face discussion and to process the context of the shows.
This season’s lineup includes productions that talk about pressing issues in the country today such as the spread of fake news, extrajudicial killings, human rights, historical revisionism, and a lot more.
Jon Santos as Trump and Duterte in the political spoof, Trumperte
From September 2018 to June 2019, PETA will stage a number of productions including a restaging of “Ang Buhay ni Galileo” which features the conflicts between science and religion through the life of 16th century scientist Galileo Galilei; and “A Game of Trolls”, a musical for millennials which talks about disinformation and historical revisionism. A Game of Trolls serves to remind the youth of the country’s state during the martial law.
Included also in the list is PETA’s new children’s musical, “Tagu-taguan, Nasaan ang Buwan?” which highlights the power of imagination as a young boy goes into a magical journey; and “Charot” which imagines the country in a new chapter and will be staged in time for the 2019 elections.
Dulaang UP’s “Kundiman Party”, Jon Santos’ “Trumperte”, Third World Improv’s “Manila Improv Festival 2019”, the 5th anniversary of Words Anonymous, and a “Human Rights Film Festival” are also included in the list of shows and performances in PETA’s new season.
PETA does not limit their reach within the black box as they will also launch programs that extend to the schools and communities: Arts Ed Matters program and Rehearsing Democracy and Resiliency program.
At this current political situation of the country, PETA’s Stage of the Nation proves that the theater can be a platform to raise awareness and start meaningful conversations that lead people to think.
‘Stage of the Nation’ campaign runs from September 2018 to June 2019.
Philippine Educational Theater Association (PETA)
The PETA Theater Center No.5 Eymard Drive, New Manila Quezon City, Metro Manila 1112 Philippines
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