10 Theatrical Shows to See in Manila in 2016

Les Miz, a musical parody of Fifty Shades of Grey, a rap musical, and more!


(SPOT.ph) We have a glorious feeling about Philippine theater this year. With the outstanding talent we have on our shores, we fearlessly predict that our theater industry will continue to be diverse, break more boundaries, and inspire more people. We know you’re excited for Les Miz in Manila, but we’re equally thrilled to see what PETA, Repertory Philippines, Tanghalang Pilipino, and everyone in the theater scene has in store for us this year. Check them out.



50 Shades! The Musical Parody 

If you want to see Christian Grey and Anastasia Steele, er, perform on stage, check out 50 Shades! The Musical Parody. Whether you love or hate the original E.L. James best-seller and blockbuster movie, you'll probably LOL at the extremely amusing parody of Fifty Shades of Grey. We wouldn’t want to spoil the fun, but just to tease you a little bit more, picture this: The show opens with a ladies' book club discussing the novel, which leads to song-and-dance numbers that will have you ROTFL and begging for more. 



You can purchase tickets from TicketNetTicketWorld, and SM Tickets.


50 Shades! The Musical Parody runs from February 12 to 28 at Carlos P. Romulo Auditorium at the RCBC Plaza, H.V. Dela Costa, Makati City (470-6956). For more information, visit 50 Shades! The Musical Parody Manila’s website.


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3 Stars and a Sun

In this production, PETA makes a social commentary on politics and culture through a story about a dystopian Philippines. Decades into the future, The Stormdome stands as a fallout shelter created to combat climate change and political discord. The tension builds up inside the refuge as two young groups from totally different factions clash. 3 Stars and a Sun is a challenge to today’s youth—to identify the real problem and act together to resolve it. It aptly highlights the socially relevant music of Francis Magalona under the direction of Nor Domingo.


You can purchase tickets from TicketWorld



3 Stars and a Sun runs from February 4 to March 26, Tuesday to Friday, 8 p.m., and Saturday to Sunday, 3 p.m. and 8 p.m. at the PETA Theater Center, 5 Eymard Drive, New Manila, Quezon City (725-6244). For more information, visit PETA’s website.




Ballet Manila stages Rebel, a ballet choreographed by London-based Martin Lawrence, in collaboration with musical director Gerard Salonga. Rebel takes us back to the 1986 People Power Revolution, exploring the themes of bravery and the human struggle for freedom. It promises to enthrall its audience with tantalizing dancing and drama, with the Khachaturian scoring performed by the ABS-CBN Philharmonic Orchestra. 


You can purchase tickets from Ticketworld.


Rebel runs from February 25 to 28 at Aliw Theater, CCP Complex, Vicente Sotto Street, Roxas Boulevard, Pasay City (info@balletmanila.com.ph or 525-5967). For more information, visit Ballet Manila’s website.






Based on real-life events, Kalantiaw is a story about the life of historian Jose Marco and the hoax he created: the code of Kalantiaw. It encourages its audience to take a closer, more critical look at their sense of nationalism. This Palanca first prize-winning play is written by Rene O. Villanueva and directed by Charles Yee. Kalantiaw was originally entitled Ang Kagila-gilalas na Kasinungalngan Tungkol sa Isang Kayumangging Bayan, which was commisioned by the CCP back in 1994, and was performed by Tanghalang Pilipino for the Philippine Festival of Arts and Culture at the Theater Le Rond in Paris. 


Visit Tanghalang Ateneo’s official website for ticket information.


Kalantiaw runs on March 30 and 31, April 1, 2, 5, 9, and 12 at Rizal Mini Theater, Ateneo de Manila University, Katipunan Avenue, Quezon City. For more information, visit Tanghalang Ateneo’s website.




Mabining Mandirigma

After the success of the movie Heneral Luna, it became apparent that most of the young population didn't know Apolinario Mabini was disabled due to polio. In fact, very little is generally known about him. Tanghalang Pilipino's Mabining Mandirigma, a contemporary musical about the heroism of Mabini, was first staged in July 2015, and its comeback is most welcome. It's as badass as it sounds, with the lead role played by a woman (Delphine Buencamino). Mabining Mandirigma exposes Mabini's struggles during the Philippine Revolution—his uncommon vision and bravery, and how he resisted the temptation of economic gain and personal ambition for the sake of the nation.



You can purchase tickets from Ticketworld.


Mabining Mandirigma runs from February 19 to March 13 at Tanghalang Aurelio Tolentino (Little Theater), Cultural Center of the Philippines, CCP Complex, Roxas Boulevard, Pasay City. For more information, visit CCP’s website



The Game's Afoot

Under the direction of Miguel Faustmann, Repertory Philippines presents Ken Ludwig's The Game's Afoot. Set on Christmas eve of December 1936, five guests arrive at the Connecticut mansion of Broadway star William Gillette. It's a hilarious Sherlock Holmes-inspired whodunit story—with murders, suspicion, a thunderstorm, and more. Being the Holmes-wannabe that he is, Gillette tracks down the killer with the right mix of stagecraft and silliness.


You can purchase tickets from Ticketworld.


The Game's Afoot runs from January 15 to February 7 at Onstage Theatre, 2/F Greenbelt 1, Paseo de Roxas, Makati City (843-3570). For more information, visit Repertory Philippines’ website.






Red Turnip Theater stages Constellations, a play by Nick Payne, directed by Rem Zamora. Prepare to swoon in this Asian premiere of a love story that transcends time and space, starring Aliw Award winner and three-time Gawad Buhay Award winner for Best Actress, Cris Villonco, and Gawad Urian Best Actor nominee, JC Santos. 


You can purchase tickets from Ticketworld.


Constellations runs from February 6 to March 12 at Power Mac Center Spotlight, 2/F Circuit Lane, Circuit Makati, A.P. Reyes Avenue, Barangay Carmona, Makati City. For more information, visit Red Turnip Theater’s Facebook page. 



OPERA: A Rebirth in Arabesque

Gabriel Barredo's surrealist and masterful installation, Opera, comes to life as Ballet Philippines marries art and motion in OPERA: A Rebirth in Arabesque. This theatrical dance performance invites its audience to view the human body and its mortality on a deeper level. Art patrons, this performance is one you shouldn't miss. 



You can purchase tickets from Ticketworld.


OPERA: A Rebirth in Arabesque runs on February 13 and 14 at Tanghalang Nicanor Abelardo (Main Theater), Cultural Center of the Philippines, CCP Complex, Roxas Boulevard, Pasay City (832-3704 or 551-1003). For more information, visit CCP’s website



Fun Home

ATEG Manila presents the first international production of Tony Award-winning musical Fun Home. After her father's death, graphic novelist Alison digs deep into her past and discovers more about this man, whose character and secrets defined her family and life. We are especially excited about this play because it marks Tony Award winner Lea Salonga's first theatrical stage performance in Manila since 2012, as she plays the role of Helen Bechdel.


For ticket information, check out ATEG’s Facebook page.


Fun Home opens in November. For more information, visit ATEG’s Facebook page.




Les Misérables

We Dreamed the Dream and it happened. After successful seasons in Melbourne and Perth, Cameron Mackintosh’s production of Les Misérables is coming to Manila in March. Its international cast includes Filipina and West End-based Rachelle Ann Go, who has earned lots of praise from Les Miz fans abroad with her role as Fantine. Joining her are Kerrie Anne Greenland as Éponine, Chris Durling as Enjolras, and Emily Langridge as Cosette. This staging of 19th Century Revolutionary France features glorious modernized staging and orchestrations, as well as dazzling scenery inspired by the paintings of Victor Hugo.



You can purchase tickets from Ticketworld.


Les Misérables runs from March 11 to April 17 at The Theatre, Solaire Resort and Casino, 1 Asean Avenue, Entertainment City, Tambo, Parañaque City (403-8646). For more information, visit Les Misérables Manila’s website

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