Dulaang UP's The Duchess of Malfi

Dulaang UP started to stage "The Duchess of Malfi"/"Ang Dukesa ng Malfi" last September 11.

I am one of those who doesn't have any inkling on how the story will go and what it's really about, aside from that there's a duchess.  I relied a lot on Dulaang UP's storytelling.  However, I wasn't able to resist the urge to check the play bill during the intermission, to make sure I was still understanding things correctly, and how far away are we from the end.





Adriana Agcaoili was our duchess.  I was curious on how Banaue Miclat would take on the role.  We saw the very first run without considering if it would be in English or in Filipino.  What we saw was in English.

Richard Cunanan was our "Bosola" and he's hilarious and very organic!  It was evident that he took us in a journey that would be different from how his alternates (Neil Ryan Sese and George de Jesus III) would have.  I enjoyed his driving nonetheless.

Jacques Borlaza's portrayal of "Ferdinand" is very intense!  It was always at the peak of emotions.  It would have been more exciting if we were in a roller coaster with peaks and valleys.

Menggie Cobarrubias as the Cardinal was so relaxed, almost lax, almost carefree, almost apathetic.

Now, Carlo Tarobal is someone to watch out for.  He has all the potential in making a good "Antonio".  I sure hope it didn't remain to be just a potential.

My favorite member of the cast would be Dolly de Leon "Cariola".  I was able to feel all her emotions.  She exuded the appropriate status of her role.  Her every movement and action has meaning and reason.  Her character as the faithful and loving servant to the duchess was complete and whole.

One of the most confusing parts of this production is its time or period.  The lines would dictate that it's during the present.  However, the clothes/costume would say otherwise.  Okay, so. it's a different place and maybe they dress different there, but places like Milan, Paris, those are real and we know and no, they don't dress that way there.  Then, their manner of speaking, the words they use, it's not of 2013.  So, it really makes me wonder and most of the time forget, that yeah, this is supposed to be set in the present.  Bringing out an iPhone was not a good reminder.

I like the set and its versatility and how it helps in the transformation of each setting.

So, overall, I'm not much of a fan of this production.  However, Banaue Miclat's and George de Jesus III's portrayals is making me curious.  Just not curious enough to purchase tickets.  I think they'll be brilliant though.

You still have a chance to catch The Duchess of Malfi/Ang Dukesa ng Malfi until September 29, 2013 at the Wilfrido Ma. Guerrero Theater, Palma Hall, University of the Philippines Diliman.  For more inquiries about being sponsors and availing tickets, contact the Dulaang UP Office at 926-1349, 981-8500 local 2449 or 433-7840 and look for Ms. Camille Guevarra or Ms. Samanta Clarin.

Adaptation and Direction by Tony Mabesa

The Duchess of Malfi
ENGLISH runs
September 24, 25, 26, 27 (7:00PM)

FILIPINO runs
September 28, 29 (10:00 AM and 3:00 PM)

Filipino Translation by Allan Palileo

Date and Time Watched: September 11, 2013 7:00 PM
Best Part: having Richard Cunanan and Dolly de Leon in the cast
Worst Part: showing everyone the iPhone with no relevance whatsoever in the plot


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The Jagged Barn

Your oblivious but observing blogger.

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