event of the day: watch a play

by christinady

9am I watched the play ‘Ang Pasyon ni Rizal’ (The Passion of Rizal), which stars my good friend Marco Morales in the lead role as the country’s national hero Jose Rizal. With me was my acupuncturist/Noli-Fili fan Kit Navarro.
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I met Marco in 2008, on the set of Rakista, when I subbed for the assistant stylist for one shooting day. We chatted for 10 minutes. He insisted his character wear all stripes and white pants; I liked him instantly.

Next time I would see him was in Sydney a month later, where I was on an artist’s residency and he was there for his brother’s wedding. He took me around, to Bondi, Manly beach, a sushi train place, a chocolate restaurant, everywhere all over.

marco at my show 'between the sea and the sky' --drawings inspired by sydney

Fast forward to 2011, and he’s done quite a number of indie movies; in most of them he’s naked (or so I’ve heard– I’ve never seen any of his work!). He’s always wanted to do a play, so yey! In this play, Rizal’s persecution is likened to Jesus Christ’s (hence, the title).  In the process, Rizal gets to dialogue with characters in his book Noli Me Tangere– Sisa, Padre Damaso, Ibarra, et al.

Upon entering the PUP COC Theater, I didn’t have high hopes. The set was, well, it needed work. (Kind of reminded me of that awful set of Philippine Ballet Theater’s ‘Romeo and Juliet’ earlier this year.) And I am very judgmental when it comes to sets.

But once the play started, it was actually engaging. It was weird at first hearing Marco talk in straight deep Filipino– I’m so used to his charming Australian drawl. But beyond that, it was a pretty good play. But this is not going to be a review. So all I will say is, I was quite impressed– Marco can act. So proud of you my friend.

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backstage with Marco and the rest of the cast

It was quite a long play, but well worth watching. Afterwards we headed to UNO along Tomas Morato, where Kit treated me to a simple yet tasty lunch.

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During lunch, we discussed the merits of this Rizal play. Bonus: Rizal takes off his clothes (well not all of them!) in the end. Oh Marco!

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