Negros Museum hosts exhibit on theater design

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Friday, August 22, 2014


AN ART exhibit on theater stage design opened at the Negros Museum in Bacolod last August 20 and will run until September 15.

Titled “BADONG—Salvador Bernal Designs the Stage,” the exhibit features the art of theater design which remains largely unknown or unappreciated due to the lack of awareness of what it requires and how crucial it is to a theater production.

The exhibit aims to introduce and explain this rising art form though some of the most expressive and impressive works of Bernal.

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As such, this is a major retrospective on the works of Bernal, the first and only national artist for theater design in the Philippines.

Eric Cruz, head of the Cultural Center of the Philippines (CCP) Production Design and Technical Services Division, said during the soft opening of the Badong exhibit last Aug. 15, that “through this exhibit, the CCP hopes to stimulate interest and encourage individuals in considering designing for the theater a career.”
 
Bernal’s sets and costume designs on stage is an experience that Negrense students and children should go through as it will expose them to the art of theater design, he added.

The exhibit was curated by Dr. Nicanor Tiongson and set and costume designer Gino Gonzales.

Tiongson said the exhibit highlights Bernal’s life as an artist and the four aspects of his creative process namely, design concept and development, exploration of conceptual sources for design, discovery and development of indigenous and other materials for the stage, experimentation with spaces and venues for theater.  

These themes are illustrated in scale models, photos and costumes representing outstanding works chosen from over 250 productions in drama, dance, musicals, and operas designed by Bernal from 1969 to 2010.

Cruz said there is a “future in design” and a workshop on stage design will be conducted by Gonzales, who is Bernal’s protégé, to discover new blood and generate a new breed of production designers.
 
CCP vice president and artistic director Chris Millado, a playwright and stage director who grew up in Negros, highlighted his appreciation to the different agencies and institutions which supported the Badong exhibit with special mention to the “Negrense Ladies” who are responsible in spearheading the cultural movement in the province.

Published in the Sun.Star Bacolod newspaper on August 22, 2014.

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