To cap the virtual celebrations of “Buwan ng Pambansang Wika” (National Language Month) and “Buwan ng Kasaysayan” (History Month) held by the Department of Foreign Affairs this August, a special free screening of the classic zarzuela, “Walang Sugat (Unwounded),” will be held from 29 to 31 August 2020 through the DFA Official Website (https://tinyurl.com/DFAZarzuela).
An initiative of the DFA Office Strategic Communications and Research – Cultural Diplomacy Division, the special screening is in cooperation with the Cultural Center of the Philippines and Tanghalang Pilipino.
The Tagalog-language zarzuela “Walang Sugat,” which was written in 1898 by Severino Reyes, the Father of Tagalog Plays and Zarzuela and more popularly known for his pen name “Lola Basyang,” was first staged in 1902 at Teatro Libertad. For this special screening, the DFA will feature the Tanghalang Pilipino production which was mounted for its 26th Season in 2012.
In this production of the timeless classic zarzuela, the story of forbidden love amid the 1896 Philippine Revolutionary movement against the Spaniards was beautifully portrayed by soprano Cris Villonco who played the character of “Julia,” and the tenor Noel Rayos who played the role of “Temyong.”
Direction was done by Carlos Siguon-Reyna and for this production, Dr. Nicanor Tiongson, Fulgencio Tolentino, and Mike Velarde added some lines to the 1898 original work of the playwright. Nonoy Froilan took charge of choreography while Chino Toledo was in charge of the musical direction.
Zarzuela is a Spanish tradition that started in Spain in the 17th century which showed the cultures of Spain through music and dance. When it was introduced in the Philippines in the 19th Century by Spanish director Alejandro Cubero, the zarzuela transformed to narrate the contemporary socio-cultural-economic and political issues through songs, dances, and lyric poetry masked in romance.
Apart from this screening, the Tanghalang Pilipino will also be holding, “Handa Awit,” a special performance of songs from their previous musicals such as “Walang Sugat” and “Noli Me Tangere The Musical” on their YouTube Channel on 31 August 2020 at 6:00 p.m.
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