UPDATED, June 28, 2014–The Virgin Labfest is an annual festival of untried, untested, unstaged and unpublished plays. This year, it will be held from June 25 to July 6, 2014 at the CCP Tanghalang Huseng Batute with 3pm and 8pm shows. It is a project of the CCP in cooperation with the Writer’s Bloc, Inc. and Tanghalang Pilipino and with the assistance of the National Commission for Culture and Arts.
Now on its tenth year, the Virgin Labfest has earned a solid reputation for its exciting and provocative line-up of one-act plays from playwrights both young and old. In addition to the main features, there are three staged readings and a Fellowship program.
SET A: June 25, 3pm & 8pm; July 5, 3pm; July 6, 8pm
Director: Audie Gemora
Actors: Cris Pasturan, Randy Villarama, Uleb Nieto, Gian Miguel Landayan, Kristine Bernal, Ronirick Salcedo Romal
It’s a dreaded reunion between a man and a woman who had anonymous sex two years ago. The man appears at a time the woman is in a relationship. He wants to extort some money from the woman or else he will destroy her by showing a video of their sexual act. The truth is out and puts the current relationship to a test, meanwhile interrogating our own discomfort about this level of sexuality among women.
SA ISANG HINDI NATATANGING UMAGA, AT ANG MGA ULAP
AY DAHAN-DAHAN PUMAIBABAW SA NABUBULOK NA LUNGSOD
Director: Denisa Reyes
Actors: Liesl Batucan, Jonathan Tadioan, Yong Tapang
Meg and AJ meet in the most typical friendly lunch at work. Five years afterwards, Meg visits AJ’s house on his 40th birthday – a date he had once said would be the day he’ll kill himself. In the short and nostalgic “birthday celebration,” the ghost of a brief but ultimately dead love story awkwardly looms above them.
SA PAGITAN NG DALAWANG KAHONG LIHAM
Director: Chris Millado
Actors: Roeder Camañag, Marco Viaña
Not wanting to be left alone by his long-time lover Cards, successful actor Tart reminds Cards of their tempestuous yet romance-filled relationship by reading the letters Cards sent him. To justify their separation, Cards fires back at Tart by reading the letters Tart wrote him. As they consume each other’s box of letters, the history of their love affair flashes back with the intermittent singing of Julie Andrew’s “Time is My Friend.” But even as they traverse the romantic rope tying their two boxes of letters, they eventually learn that in matters of the heart, perhaps love is never enough.
SET B: June 26, 3pm & 8pm; July 5, 8pm; July 6, 3pm
WENDY WANTS TO BE A HOUSEWIFE
Director: Joshua Lim So
Actors: Delphine Buencamino, Topper Fabregas
Smart and pretty little Wendy is resigning from her current job and taking the first step towards her dream job–being a housewife. Assigned for her exit interview is Mark, a manager and a friend she once worked with on a project during her early years in the company. They talk about their past, their present, and the decisions they made that brought them to where they are now. Both of them take steps towards the future that they want. Unfortunately, only one of them succeeds.
Director: Dennis Marasigan
Actors: Dolly De Leon, Bong Cabrera, Wenah Nagales, Karyl Factora, Zandra Summer, Joanne Marie V. Magno
Intoy is in critical condition after a ruptured aneurysm triggers a stroke and leaves him unconscious. The doctor recommends immediate surgery but even the down payment for the surgeon’s professional fee is beyond the means of the street ice cream vendor and his wife. Felisa, the wife, calls Intoy’s siblings for help. While their brother’s fate depends on their decision, the reunion between Guido, Doreen, and Linda results into bickering and opens up long-held feelings of animosity, resentment, and envy for each other.
THE MISSING PEACE
Director: Marlon Rivera
Actors: Noemi Manikan-Gomez, Hannah dela Guerra, Claude San Antonio, Rem Zamora
It is the year 2045, and the world is teetering towards explosive widespread conflict, the likes of which it hasn’t seen in almost a century. But that won’t stop the Miss Universal Empress beauty pageant from taking place in Barcelona, Spain. The pageant is of particular importance to the Philippines, as the South East Asian nation has so far won four of the world’s top five beauty competitions. A grandslam seems inevitable, but then there’s, well… the prophecy.
SET C: June 27, 3pm & 8pm; July 2, 3pm; July 4, 8pm
Director: Melvin Lee
Actors: Crispin Pineda, Meann Espinosa
Jimmy, an aging ex-convict seeking redemption, asks the help of his bitter and cynical daughter, Jeanette, who he hasn’t seen for nearly 20 years and is now a prolific but disturbed writer, to proofread and edit his resume and personal statement for a job opportunity abroad.
LAST 10 MINUTES
Director: Tami Monsod
Actors: Nor Domingo, Mayen Estanero
Two strangers find ways to connect over loss and past experiences during the last few minutes in a motel room.
ANG GOLDFISH NI PROF. DIMAANDAL
Director: Roobak Valle
Actors: Sherry Lara, Chrome Cosio, Peewee O’Hara, Mosang, Wenah Nagales, Paolo O’Hara
Prof. Dimaandal (a.k.a Ma’am D), a retiring cranky Science teacher, demands justice for her beloved goldfish. Allegedly murdered by three students, her pet becomes the center of chaos inside the Principal’s office as concerned parents, who turn out to be alumni of the school and former sweethearts at that, obliquely resolve their open-ended past; while faculty members struggle to grasp the logic of seeking justice for a dead fish. Based on real events, “Ang Goldfish ni Prof. Dimaandal” portrays how absurdity can effortlessly prevail in places where things are expected to be normal, even in the academe. Because after all, does anything even make sense?
SET D: June 28, 3pm & 8pm; July 2, 8pm; July 3, 3pm
Maynard Manasala & U.Z. Eliserio
Director: JK Anicoche
Actors: Hermie Concepcion, Opaline Santos, Sarah Salazar, Joel Saracho, Melia Romero-Payawal
Kiko’s uncle abused her. Now he is dead. Kiko can finally bury the shame and the pain. But first, she has to reveal the truth to her mother, who, unfortunately, has secrets of her own. A testament to the strength of children and the power of women, Bago Ilibing is a play about love, loss, and distributing snacks at Filipino wakes.
Director: Jenny Jamora
Actors: Isabelle Martinez, Allison Segarra
“Sa Lilim” is a play about best friends, Lai and Hani, who reunite after a year of separation. Lai returns to her hometown from the city where she takes her secondary studies, while Hani is struggling with her own education from the local high school. As they start off from a series of awkward confrontations, there unfold secrets that they have never shared with each other, not until now.
Director: Ed Lacson Jr.
Actors: Sherry Lara, Chino Veguillas, Juliene Mendoza
It’s 3 am in Lola Betang’s time…
Amidst the buzz of the drunken Tondo,
Lola Betang stays sober and still.
With her old transistor beside her,
she waits patiently for her behind-scheduled
“Sundo”. Lola Betang patiently waits,
hoping that when demise finally faces her,
She will, at long last,
come face to face again with the love of her life…
If only time would allow her.
SET E (Virgin Labfest 9: Revisited): June 29, 3pm & 8pm; July 3, 8pm; July 4, 3pm
Director: Ed Lacson Jr.
Actors: Jelson Bay, Thea Gloria, Mila Rose Romero, Karenina Haniel, Mario Mendoza Jr., Jean Judith Javier, Noel Taylo, Kiki Baento, Adrienne Vergara
Ting has a Katipunero hero for an ancestor. In fact, a street is named after him. He wants his Fil-am daughter, Bituin, to feel that Pinoy pride by showing her that. The bad news is that the street will soon give way to a highway, which is being built through a mayor’s initiative. Bituin couldn’t care less, but Ting wants to preserve the legacy of his great-grandfather. An informal settler and an NGO worker also seem to have reasons to stop the mayor from building this highway. What’s in this street anyway that they have to fight for it? Perhaps a quest for immortality, survival or something else?
Director: Law Fajardo
Actors: Bernardo Bernardo, Ces Quesada, Junjun Quintana Jr., Only Torres
The play is set in 1992 on an ordinary Sunday in Tokyo. Two Filipino friends, Benjie and Manuel, both illegal workers in Japan, gather at the house of their Filipina friend, Manang Linda, to collect the letters their families send to fictional names they created to hide their true identities. At the middle of the happy lunch, Rodel, another young Filipino illegal worker, barges in, declaring he had just killed a man who threatened to report him to the police. His friends suggest that he moves deeper underground by moving to another prefecture, finding a new day job, cutting ties with his family and friends, keeping a low profile, changing his name, and staying hidden for good. Would Rodel choose to stay invisible not only to the police but also to his family and friends to keep his freedom and continue working for his family’s sake?
KUNG PAANO AKO NAGING LEADING LADY
Director: Chris Martinez
Actors: Hans Eickstein, Kiki Baento, Skyzx Labastilla
Being a maid is tough enough, but when Mely finds employment under a group of unconventional employers, she steps up to the unique challenge for the sake of her family. When Mely’s sister Viva enters the picture, Mely is reminded of a disturbing past, made complicated by an unsettling romantic revelation made by one of her employers. All this in a tragicomedy about domestic help, sibling rivalry, and shattered dreams.
One-Act Plays: June 26, 6pm
Director: Emman dela Cruz
Actors: Antonio Lane, Lenlen Frial
Lagalag narrates the struggles of two siblings displaced by a super typhoon. Their discourse reveals gray areas of morality, the importance of uttering the unspeakable, and the discovery of humanity in a hopeless place.
Director: Emman dela Cruz
Actors: Thea Gloria, Rusell Legaspi
December 21, 2012–the world is about to end and two artist friends wait patiently on top of a Manila skyscraper to see if the Mayans were correct. Maya is a sculptor while Glenn, the brother of her husband, is an architect. As Maya tries to convince Glenn that their waiting for the end is in vain, she discovers that Glenn knew everything about the disappearance of her husband who climbed up the mountains for one last photograph.
Full-Length Play: July 3, 6pm
MGA BUHAY NA APOY
Kanakan Balintagos (Aureaus Solito)
Director: Rolando Inocencio
Actors: Raye Baquirin, Malou Crisologo, Karen Gaerlan, Patricia Ismael, Angelina Kanapi, Russell Legaspi, Gie Onida, Dina Padilla, Nazer Salcedo, Anika R. Zaballa
An unstaged play thought lost by the playwright that was recently unearthed about a family from Palawan displaced in the city.
WRITING FELLOWSHIP SHOWCASE
Staged Reading: July 6, 6pm
VLF 10 Writing Fellows:
Mark Norman Boquiren
Perterean Joseph Brinas
Dean Jantzen Chua
Catherina Maria Luisa Dario
Danielle Joyce Factora
Anna Loren Gingco
Marco Alfino Miranda
Harlequin Theater Guild
“Ang Transaksiyon” by Jovielyn Avisado
“Mannequin” by Laurice Guillermo
“Usapang Basket(Balls)” by Lois Villar
“Realism” by Marc Gaba
“Barbie Girls” by Em Mendez
TICKETS & FESTIVAL PASS:
Ticket price for each set is at Php 300.
Tickets and festival passes are available at the CCP Box Office. Call 832-3704.
Single tickets can also be purchased online through Ticketworld.
Virgin Labfest Festival Pass
(Priority lane entry until five minutes before show.)
Extra Virgin Premiere (for 5 sets, June 25-29) – Php 1,200
Virgin Premiere (for 4 sets, June 25-29) – Php 900
Extra Virgin Encore (for 5 sets, July 02-06) – Php 1,200
Virgin Encore (for 4 sets, July 02-06) – Php 900
Only audiences who are 18 years old and above can be admitted.
Plays in the Virgin Labfest plays may contain scenes and other elements that are not be suitable for viewers below 18 years of age.