Dulaang UP presents the world premiere of Floy Quintos's COLLECTION (photo by Vlad Gonzales)
Manila, Philippines, March 1, 2013 -- "Collection," an original Filipino play, written by multi-awarded playwright Floy Quintos ("Shock Value," "Ang Bagong Harana") and directed by avant garde director Dexter Santos ("Rizal X", "Orosman at Zafira") is DUP's final offering for its 37th season. The production runs until Wednesday, March 6 at Wilfrido Ma. Guerrero Theater, University of the Philippines.
In a world where everyone is obsessed with "what's new" and "what to buy next," "Collection" challenges our values, motives, and way of life. It is about what people are willing to do for fame and money. It is about a world where auctions are the new form of entertainment; and people bid with extreme absurdity -- even national treasures are sold to the highest bidder.
Below are excerpts from reviews:
Cora Llamas, Inquirer.net: The poignantly silent or subdued moments in Dulaang UP's "Collection" are what hit you like a fist to the stomach, or make that sense of disquiet creep under your skin. Probably because they are few and far between, amidst endless scenes of bragging auctioneers, swaggering fashionistas, the raving show-biz crowd and half-a-dozen big players who just want to outshout everyone else.
Subtlety holds no premium for the larger-than-life characters in this play who make no bones about their agenda and announce it to the rest of the world: The industrialist Don Manolo (Leo Rialp), international jeweler Tatiana (Alya Honasan), beauty magnate Stephen Yan (Roeder Camanag) and creative genius Alphonse (Alexander Cortez)...
In this fictional futuristic world brought to life by Dexter Santos' able direction, our national patrimony, from Rizal's novels to the Banaue rice terraces, is being sold to the highest bidder. In the guise of making our heritage more accessible to those who can't afford to go to the nearest tourist spot or the museum, Don Manolo will be building a theme park to house the Chocolate Hills transplanted straight from Bohol.
Rome Jorge, Rappler.com: It is expertly lit; the stage lights up exactly like a disco when people dance. It is well choreographed; characters move like clockwork. It is gorgeously backdropped; the rich, highly evocative set design gives actors something to work with without impeding their movement.
"Collection" is also - most crucially - thoughtfully and vigorously portrayed and directed...
"Collection" is a production that seems to good, too grand for such an intimate college theater venue as University of the Philippines' Wilfrido Maria Guerrero Theater, where it runs until the 3rd [6th] of March. And, yes, even this staging, like all good things, seems to end too soon.
Rina Angela Corpus, Rappler.com: It is an inimitable occasion that the play was gifted with an enviable powerhouse of veteran and amateur actors. Leo Rialp as the cocksure old tycoon was a natural; his sheer age and maturity that comes from his experience as director and actor for TV, stage and film shone through. Though an occasional actress, writer Alya Honasan as Tatiana gave passionate life to a demi-religious and vainglorious socialite. Jean Javier as Helena was naturally wacky, and Red Concepcion as Gus was intent and focused.
Among the cast, the one who fully stood out was newbie theater student Teetin Villanueva as Hermana: her angelic soprano voice and innocent countenance were compelling characteristics that added mysticism to the fierce character of the Hermana, who powerfully taunted Carlo like a biting conscience before the Virgin's auction. Theater student Jules dela Paz as the cross-dressing, social-climbing Inaki Girl was likewise a strong hilarious presence. Dance student Al Garcia, who played various roles as a commoner, lotto winner, devotee, and the play's associate choreographer, also had a presence that riveted.
The smart, edgy, crisp choreography by Dexter Santos was an astute addition to his direction. It added life to the stylized babaylan dances; the Caracol dance of the religious townsfolk; and the restless moves of media reporters and the boozing socialites amidst blitzkrieg lights. The short disco-like Ifugao dance after the sale of the terraces was especially riotous, a parody of the blatant commodification of our indigenous cultures.