La Rev take 2

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Saturday, March 8, 2014


THE highly-acclaimed Ballet Philippines production La Revolucion Filipina will be re-staged in May, and the training for the grand show in Manila will all take place here in Davao City.

Eleven Ballet Philippines dancers and a teacher will be coming over and staying a month in Davao City in preparation for La Rev choreographed by Davao’s own Agnes D. Locsin.

“Since they are here and they are good dances, I will take advantage of them,” Locsin said in last week’s Arttalk, a monthly press forum on arts and culture at the Park Inn by Radisson. Arttalk is an initiative of FreeMedia, a loose group of journalists who are the main convenors of the Davao Media Freedom Day celebration.

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Taking advantage means having a showcase sometime in May.

“The recital will be a dry-run,” she said.

Locsin said that she will be hosting all 12 as Ballet Philippines hopes to stage the grand production with the movements executed as Locsin has choreographed it.

“They will do training. I will whip them into shape kasi iba na ngayon ang teachings, or the lack of it,” she said. Her works that is dubbed as neo-ballet is actually a fusion of ethnic dance and the Graham technique.

The dancers who will be coming over, she said, are very good but lack the knowledge and style required for the production.

“They don’t want to go through what they went through the (re-staging of) Engkatada,” she said.

To explain further what she means, she described the present crop of dancers as “ballerinas.”

“Ballerina sila lahat. But Engkantada is very earthy, very ethnic, they had to be brought down to earth. They didn’t know how to go into trance, the trance-like dancing. There were like fairies, I don’t need fairies, I need an engkanto,” she said.

Biag Gaongen, Locsin’s protégé of dance admits that as dancers they go through a lot. Especially with Locsin who demands the movements she weaves in her mind.

“Youhave to kow ballet and modern dance na Graham technique, with neo-ethnic moves, and you need to understand all these,” he said in the same forum.

To this, Locsin added, “No dancer has risen to the top with only one teacher. So lahat sila dumaan sa pangit, sa mabait, sa masungit. I just happen to be the mean one,” she said.

Published in the Sun.Star Davao newspaper on March 09, 2014.

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