Ibong Adarna screening at the AFP Theater

Today, the 5th and 6th Grade students of Dana's school went to the AFP Theater in Camp Aguinaldo to watch Gantimpala Theater's performance of Ibong Adarna.  Dana was very excited to watch another play.

"Ibong Adarna" is an epic story set in Berbanya and revolves around three Princes, sons of King Fernando and Queen Valeriana, Don Pedro, Don Diego and Don Juan.  When the King became afflicted with a malady, after dreaming that something terrible will befall his youngest son, and none of his healers was able to find a cure, an elderly man told him that the songs of the Ibong Adarna (Adarna Bird) will be the only solution. His three sons then subsequently went on this quest but the two elder sons fell prey to the seven lyrical songs and were lulled to sleep and then turned to stone when the bird's droppings landed on them.  The youngest son, Don Juan, succeeded where his brothers failed due to the help of an old hermit who told him the secret to capturing the bird.  There's more to the story here in a Wikipedia article.

The school hired vans to transport us to the venue.  We left the school at 7:30AM to make the 9AM screening.  Traffic was okay until we reached EDSA and Bonny Serrano Avenue.  We were told that we can bring snacks but when we got there, the kids all had to leave behind their bags before they can enter the theater.  This was to ensure that no one eats or drinks inside.  They could get to their bags during the 10-minute intermission or buy from the snack bar.

Waiting for her turn to board the van 
With her classmates at the entrance
At the lobby, waiting for their turn to enter the theater
Seated and eagerly anticipating the start of the play
Waiting for the others to be seated 
Bought Feather Pens worth P20 each
Well, as you know, you're not allowed to take pictures or videos while the play is ongoing so I'll just tell you about the marvelous and amazing show.  
  • It was 2 hours long but we weren't bored.  
  • It was wholly Filipino, the dialogue was poetic (since it is based on a Korido, a type of poem that was sung) but there were instances where contemporary language was used too.
  • The music was a major part of the production and it was amazing.  They utilized native musical instruments (I'm sorry I don't know what you call it but for some reason the word "Kulintang" comes to mind).  The bard, the narrator of the story, was awesome! I loved his melody and his voice :)
  • Costumes were grand and very colorful.  They reminded me of Thai and Muslim influences.
  • The set and production designs were commendable.  They really helped infuse the mood of the show.
  • Of course, the performers were astounding!  There were some technical issues with the microphones but otherwise they all connected with the audience, getting them to react with laughter, applause, sighs of regret and "wooohoos" during the romance sequences ;)
  • The "Ibong Adarna" character performed his dance routines with grace and really embodied being a bird with his twitches and head turns. 
I just wish that their public restrooms were upgraded though.  Some of the cubicles in the ladies' restroom had no locks so you need someone to cover for you while you do your thing.  The toilets weren't also flushing properly so that was inconvenient.  I suggest that you don't drink too much because there are only 5 cubicles and when you have hundreds of students all going to the bathroom at once and you only have a limited time to do your business, well, you're not going to make it.  

All in all, it was a good day and judging from Dana's smile, she really had a blast! :)

The show still has more playdates:
September 26, 2015 - AFP Theater - 9AM/12PM/3PM
October 2, 2015 - Star Theater - 9AM/12PM/3PM
October 9 & 10, 2015 - SM Southmall - 11AM/2PM

For more information, just contact Gantimpala Theater through 998-5622 and 872-0261 or through their FB page - www.facebook.com/gantimpala.

*Update:  I had to confirm the cast members who performed during the 9AM screening.

Don Juan - BJ Forbes
Don Diego - Raymond Talavera
Don Pedro - Jeff Carpio
Ermitanyo - Joey de Guzman
Ibong Adarna - Jhuniel Gojit
Maria - Jernice Matunan
Juana - Sharlene Rivera
Leonora - Ira Ruzz
Haring Fernando - Raffy Echem
Reyna Valeriana - Melanie Dujunco
Haring Salermo - Abel Napuran

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