Thursday, July 12, 2018

Eto Na! Musikal nAPO! takes us back to APO Hiking Society’s roots in the 70s

Mark Bautista (Rick)
Flashback to the 70s: the Juan Dela Cruz band, led by the inimitable Pepe Smith, was rocking the airwaves while Sharon Cuneta charmed the most stubborn of DJs to play her favorite love song. People walked down the streets in bell-bottomed jeans, platform Oxfords, and batik tunics paired with Chuck Taylors. Citizens wore peace signs and doves as subtle messages of rebellion against the dictatorship. Bayan Ko was well on its way to becoming emblematic of a nation’s freedom. While times were dark, the music stayed strong. Not even the dictatorship could extinguish the voices of the country’s finest songwriters and musicians.

Rita Daniela (Anna)
APO Hiking Society shared messages of hope and optimism in the midst of dark times. Jim Paredes, Boboy Garrovillo, and Danny Javier openly spoke up against the government when performing to audiences all over the country, fully aware of the danger that they were getting themselves into. Their songs such as “Panalangin” and “Show Me A Smile” served as reminders of hope and steadfastness. The iconic song “Handog ng Pilipino sa Mundo," which is inscribed on Our Lady of EDSA Shrine, was reportedly written by Paredes in three minutes after he was inspired by People Power.
Marika Sasaki (Jane)
Director Robbie Guevara wrote the story loosely based on the start of APO Hiking Society as collegiates at the Ateneo De Manila University. Set during the era of Martial Law, Eto Na! Musikal nAPO! tells the story of a motley crew of students getting ready to take on a singing and songwriting competition. Their lives are seemingly carefree at first, allowing them to focus on their music—which is undoubtedly good, but yet to be discovered. However, their idyllic youth doesn’t last for long. Even if their passion for music burns bright, life gets in the way. Despite the hardships, they emerge from their struggles to prove the power of friendship and solidarity—which is what APO Hiking Society also shared with Filipinos over the course of their long career. The group’s existence outlasted Martial Law, and their music inspired people across various generations. 
Jobim Javier (Butch)
We captured in songs a lot of what it is like to grow up in the Philippines,” says Paredes, who himself was active in protesting against Martial Law. APO Hiking Society recognized the power of music to uplift people, which their songs continue to do today. Eto Na! Musikal nAPO! pays respect to that by reliving the songs onstage with a moving story which is about love, friendship, overcoming obstacles, and the sheer joy in living in the moment.
Sab Jose (Michelle)
More than a walk down memory lane, Eto Na! Musikal nAPO! is a thrilling spin on APO Hiking Society’s songs by musical director Daniel Bartolome. Featuring some of APO’s greatest hits like “Pumapatak Na Naman Ang Ulan,” “Panalangin” and “Paano” among others, the musical is a treat for fans and their families. Inspired by the early days of the legends of OPM, the musical is a homage to APO and their illustrious history. Even if you know the songs by heart, they won’t exactly sound the same. “You'll notice right away that something new is added to the original,” says musical director Daniel Bartolome, “…There's ragtime, swing, straight rock.” The musical offers reinvented renditions of the songs with new and unexpected arrangements that will surprise even APO Hiking Society’s diehard listeners.
Sab Jose (Michelle), Rita  Daniela (Anna), Marika Sasaki (Jane)
“Learning about this musical is really exciting for us because there is nothing more pleasant than to have your body of work through four decades be staged by a successfully-known production company, and be given new life in a medium that we as a group have not quite immersed ourselves in,” says Garrovillo. He originally suggested the idea of a musical to director Guevara in 2013. “We also feel comfortable that our material is in good hands. I’m more excited now to see the production fulfill their aspirations and different takes on our music.”

Leading the cast is Mark Bautista who has just returned from Seattle Repertory’s staging of Here Lies Love, together with Jon Philippe Go, Jobim Javier, Alfritz Blanche, Jef Flores, Jon Abella, and Vyen Villanueva. Joining them are Rita Daniela, Marika Sasaki, Sab Jose, Raul Montesa, and Noemi Gonzales.

Rounding out the cast are Gian Gloria, Shalee Vicencio, Peachy Atilano-Guevara, Anton Posadas, Jourdan Bartolome, and Derrick Gozos.

Eto Na! Musikal nAPO! is a brand new original Filipino musical with music by Danny Javier, Jim Paredes and Boboy Garrovillo, musical arrangements and orchestrations by Daniel Bartolome and Orly dela Cruz.

Eto Na! Musikal nAPO!  is written and directed by Robbie Guevara, along with Jonjon Martin as dramaturg, Dingdong Rosales as assistant director, Daniel Bartolome as musical director, PJ Rebullida as choreographer, Shakira Villa Symes as lightning designer, Joey Mendoza as set designer, Eric Pineda as costume designer, Dong Calingacion as technical director, Rards Corpus as sound designer, Myrene Santos as hair and makeup designer, Ronan Ferrer as vocal supervisor and Cathy Azanza-Dy as stage coach.

Heading the production team are executive producers Santi Santamaria (9 Works Theatrical) and Joe Caliro (Globe Live), with Globe Live Events Director Denise Seva, the 9 Works Theatrical Team - Anna Santamaria as company manager, Jonjon Martin as PR manager, GM Hernandez as marketing manager, Arma Bonilla as stage manager, Gian Nicdao as graphic design manager and JC Inocian as photographer.

Eto Na! Musikal nAPO! will be shown at Maybank Performing Arts Theater, Bonifacio Global City, on August 3-5, 10-12, 17-19 & 24-26, 2018, at 8:00pm on Fridays, Saturdays & Sundays, and 3:00pm on Saturdays & Sundays.

For tickets, contact Ticketworld at 891.9999.

Official Hashtags: #9WTMusikalnAPO  #GlobeLiveMusikalnAPO
Facebook: /9WorksTheatrical. Twitter & Instagram: @9WTonline
Facebook & YouTube: /GlobePH. Twitter & Instagram: @enjoyGlobe

A limited number of performances are available for fundraising and block buying. Please contact 586.7105 • 0917.554.5560

Eto Na! Musikal nAPO! is a production of 9 Works Theatrical and Globe Live, co-presented by FOXlife and FRONTROW, with MUD (Make Up Designory) as the official make up partner, and CNN Philippines as media partner. Special thanks to BGC Arts Center.

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