Tanghalang Ateneo, the longest-running theater company of the Loyola Schools of the Ateneo de Manila University, will kick off its 41st season, “Écriture Féminine | Sulat-Babae: The Women’s Season,” this August with a full-length version of “Dolorosa” at the Doreen Black Box, Arts Wing, Areté.
Multihyphenate Jenny Jamora (“33 Variations,” “Every Brilliant Thing”) will direct the material, which was originally a one-act play and part of the Virgin Labfest 14 staged readings last year.
Playwright Peter Zaragoza Mayshle, an esteemed Tanghalang Ateneo alumnus and English professor at Carnegie Mellon University in Pennsylvania, has expanded “Dolorosa” for this season’s opener.
In the story, a one-of-a-kind wooden statue of the Mater Dolorosa, which is a family’s prized heirloom, is put together and made whole by three siblings. They do this every year for the Holy Week procession in Paete, Laguna.
On this Maundy Thursday, they await the visit of their mother Pilar, who mysteriously abandoned them 15 years ago. When she arrives, they will confront the ghosts of their past and one shattering truth about their beloved Dolorosa statue.
“Dolorosa” will feature veteran actors Bibeth Orteza as Pilar and Ron Capinding as Mariano.
Also part of the cast are Clyde Enriquez (Elena/Claudia), Zoë de Ocampo (Pilar/Juliana), Rainbow Gutierrez (Victoria/Alicia), AJ Umali (Padre Galiano/Pablo/Tasyo), Sabrina Basilio (Chedeng/Mitring), Kat Dizon (Bernadette/Mary Seat of Wisdom), Dani Capinding (Jacinta/Mary Mystical Rose), Francesca Dela Cruz (Judiel/Mary Star of the Sea), Shaun Ocrisma (Elsa/Mary Tower of Ivory), Kim Donato (Lucia/Mary Mirror of Justice), Zarya Almocera, Nicole Chua, Darl Alba and Mekaella Mendoza (ensemble).
The artistic team is composed of production designers Ben Padero and Carlo Tabije (“Heneral Luna,” “Siargao”), movement designer Jomelle Era (“Desaparesidos”), lighting designer D Cortezano (“Desaparesidos,” “Marisol”), sound designer Arvy Dimaculangan (“Desaparesidos,” “Every Brilliant Thing”), graphic designer Zoë de Ocampo (“Alpha Kappa Omega,” “Stop Kiss”), photographer Jojit Lorenzo, vocal coaches Robin Aronson and Rachael Swartz, and dramaturg and current Ateneo Creative Writing major Elise Ofilada.
Tanghalang Ateneo, a multi-Aliw Awardee, has grown into one of the country’s leading school-based theater companies. Its repertoire of plays includes Filipino originals, world classics and documentary texts turned into theater pieces, both English and Filipino.
The play will run from August 15 to 17, 22 to 24, and 29 to 31 at 7:30 p.m. and on August 17, 24, 31 at 2:30 p.m. Tickets are at 450 pesos each for ADMU students and 500 pesos each for the general public. For more information and other inquiries, contact Nicole at 0906-2662563.