Saturday, July 11, 2015

Kung Paano Ako Naging Leading Lady - The Musical (A Review)

By Anton Diaz
Original Article can be found HERE

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Kung Paano Ako Naging Leading Lady (KPANLL) is a proudly Original Filipino Musical about the aspirations and tribulations of the common Filipino, set amidst a battle between superheroes and supervillains. The show is very endearing throughout, flawlessly integrating Pinoy humor, poking fun at our quirky habits and (mis)pronunciation of words, and a hopeless love story.

I was in awe after the latest media preview at Onstage Greenbelt 1. It was my first time to watch the show, and we couldn't stop laughing and enjoyed it immensely.

I'm proud to be a witness of this coming of age of Philippine Theater and to watch history as it unfolds. Don't miss out on the show that everyone is raving about! 
This collaboration between Carlo Vergara (Writer and Creator) and Vincent De Jesus (Composer, Lyricist) is brilliant and unbeatable. Watch the video as they explain the inspiration behind KPANLL - The Musical.

Kung Paano Ako Naging Leading Lady (The Musical)-1.jpgMeet Fuwerza Filipinas--the most beloved superhero team of the country--who ironically do not speak Filipino nor interact with the common Filipino people.

Kung Paano Ako Naging Leading Lady (The Musical)-14.jpgFuerza Filipinas is made up of Team Leader Madre de Dios (Shiela Valderrama-Martinez/Astarte Abraham), Leading Man (Hans Eckstein), Nena Babushka (Giannina Ocampo), Windang Woman (Caisa Borromeo), Bazooka Man (Jef Flores/Chuck Lazaro-Hipol), and Popoy Pusakal (Chesko Rodriguez). 

Kung Paano Ako Naging Leading Lady (The Musical)-2.jpgKayumanggilas is the supervillain team and nemesis of Fuerza Filipinas, who vow to annihilate the superheroes with their temporary superhuman powers provided by the "Chemical Q". They are the proud Filipino team with all the quirky Pinoy traits.

Kung Paano Ako Naging Leading Lady (The Musical)-18.jpgKayumanggilas features Team Leader Senyor Blangko (Domi Espejo/Nar Cabico), Henyotic the Scientist (Mikoy Morales/Rhenwyn Gabalonzo), Jeryc Sans Rival the Wolfman (Elliot Eustacio), Maracas Marko the Expert Boxer (Red Nuestro), and Itak-Itak (Red Concepcion/Joshua Cabilas).

Kung Paano Ako Naging Leading Lady (The Musical)-16.jpgThe story focuses on the struggles of domestic helper Mely Moran and her sister Viva, who is perceived as lazy but believes she is destined for greater things.

Kung Paano Ako Naging Leading Lady (The Musical)-20.jpgThe plot is layered with different themes, including the kilig love story of Mely Moran, who hopeless falls in love with her amo, the superhero Leading Man...

20150702_224238...and the social theme of the fight of good citizens vs. evil politicians, with the latter seemingly winning and succeeding in eliminating the good people of this country.

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In many ways, it's like an evolution of the Pinoy superhero universe--from Zsazsa Zaturnnah to the new heroes and villains in Kung Paano Ako Naging Leading Lady.

Kung Paano Ako Naging Leading Lady (The Musical)-30.jpgI love how the lights, sounds, and set all work together to illicit emotions from and rouse the imagination of the audience.

Kung Paano Ako Naging Leading Lady (The Musical)-31.jpgIn the end, love conquers all and the common Filipino wins! Frankly, a lot of the side stories are left hanging in the plot, likely leading theater audiences to clamor for a Part 2.

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There are a number of things I love about Kung Paano Ako Naging Leading Lady - The Musical.

Firstly, there's Vincent de Jesus' Tagalog songs. They give the audience a deep insight into the Filipino psyche, while also making inspired use of our colloquial language. If I could compare it to anyone's music, it would be that of the Eraserheads--relatable, catchy, and memorable--the kind you would just love to play over and over again. 

Secondly, I also love the story, with it's blend of witty Pinoy humor, relevant social themes, and parallelisms to our own lives.

Lastly, I love that it's a feel-good musical and, in my humble opinion, a world-class production that can be staged in the likes of Broadway.

There were admittedly some dragging parts in the beginning, as the personalities of each of the characters were still being established. I also feel like some of the songs were senseless, like "We have a Maid", and I couldn't help but compare "Pretend I'm Her" to Eponine's song in Les Miserables.

I missed the first run of KPANLL at the PETA Theater, so I vowed not to miss this Onstage run. You have to watch this show and experience how it elevates the Original Filipino Musical to the world stage!

Congratulations to Dalanghita Productions, the creative team, and the entire cast of Kung Paano Ako Naging Leading Lady - The Musical!

Live an Awesome Life,
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on its closing weekend run!
July 26, 2015 | Sunday | 3PM @ OnStage, Greenbelt

Ticket Prices: 1500, 1200 and 800

For inquiries, ticket sales and reservations,
Text Karl (0908.986.1896)
RC (0922.888.5348)
Onay (0917.908.0565)

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