In celebration of World AIDS day this December, “MELANIE”, cited as one of the most memorable plays of 2013 by the prestigious BroadwayWorld.Com returns to the stage for a limited run from December 4 – 14, 2014 at the Tanghalang Huseng Batute (Studio Theater) of the Cultural Center of the Philippines.
MELANIE, a forum theater production, premiered on October 2013 in response to the rising cases of HIV in the country. Since then, the play has toured different parts of Metro Manila, specifically the areas with the highest rates of HIV and AIDS. The play aims to engage, educate and entertain the audience, leaving them not only in a fit of giggles but also armed with knowledge regarding HIV and AIDS. It offers a positive perspective for those who are affected and for those who are living with an HIV positive.
Using Forum Theater as a device, the production effectively inculcates important information about HIV and AIDS to the audience by involving them into the performance through an interactive ‘breaking of the fourth wall’. This way, audience feel that they are part of the process, and at a greater extent, involved in creating a solution.
MELANIE is directed by Tanghalang Pilipino’s Associate Artistic Director Tuxqs Rutaquio, whose works include Walang Kukurap (2012) and the rap-through musical Kleptomaniacs (2014), both of which talk about corruption in the Philippine government. The Tanghalang Pilipino Actors Company lead the cast, which also include Phi Palmos, Cyril Balderama, and Anton Nolasco. Penned by famous playwright Layeta Bucoy, the powerhouse artistic staff includes John Batalla for the lights design and Jed Balsamo for the music.
Melanie is another production of Tanghalang Pilipino, the resident theater company of the Cultural Center of the Philippines. Tanghalang Pilipino envisions raising Philippine theater to heights of professional and artistic excellence, dedicated to developing and training actors, playwrights and designers with special emphasis in the production of original Filipino plays. By staging plays from the repertoire of Philippine past and plays in translation from other countries, TP hopes to bring to the experience of both artists and audience the best of Philippine and global theater tradition. Tanghalang Pilipino maintains a regular training program for actors through its Actors’ Company. The only one of its kind in the country, the Actors’ company is a pool of professional theater actors who go through intensive training in acting, movement, dance, voice, script analysis, improvisation, directing and other production-related courses. Members of this prestigious and privileged group are among the most respected artists in the Philippine theater, television and film communities. Now on its 28th Season, Tanghalang Pilipino promises to present high-caliber productions celebrating the Filipino artistry in the next years to come.