Neri: In the limelight

BITUING Walang Ningning the musical had its final run last week at the Newport Performing Arts Theater in Resorts World Manila (RWM). It was full house only, and our Cebu group (composed of members of the Cebu Tours & Travel Association led by its president Baby Dy of Grand Hope Travel), was proudly part of the enthralled audience.

The show is the very first original Filipino musical produced by Resorts World Manila and, of course, it won’t be the last because it is an advocacy of RWM (particularly of its chairman/chief executive officer Dr. Andrew L. Tan) to advance the works of our very own Filipino talents in music, song, dance, drama etc. RWM is taking the initial steps to become the “Broadway of Asia.”

By the way, the leading lady of Bituin is Cebuana Monica Cuenco. And what makes the show quite interesting for us Cebuanos are the Bisaya lines in the dialogue. The cast includes well-known theater personalities Cris Villongco, Menchu Lauchengco Yulo and Jon Santos, as well as Mark Bautista, Michael Williams, Ronnie Liang, John Nite and Jay Roa.

Bituin the musical is very entertaining. The story which was first made into a movie is well-loved and the songs easily became favorites. What stood out in the production was the beautiful play of lights onstage and the fast change of scenes. Yes, the RWM theater is getting there in terms of stage sophistication, and yes, our talents are definitely world-class.

There is a expanding clamor for a re-run of Bituing Walang Ningning, and hopefully, there will be one before the end of the year. Watch for the announcement and don’t miss it this time.

About RWM

Resorts World Manila (RWM) is a huge entertainment/lifestyle destination under the wings of Alliance Global Inc. with Dr. Andrew L. Tan as chairman and chief executive officer. Situated right across the Ninoy Aquino International Airport Terminal 3, the complex houses a huge Casino, three hotels (more are under construction), and the Newport Mall with its countless restaurants and shops.

***

For this year’s celebration of Fil-Am Friendship Day, the American Chamber of Commerce in the Philippines (headed in Cebu by its president Mark Van Dyke) organized a dinner dance at the Santa Maria Ballroom of Radisson Blu dubbed “Imagine,” a take off from The Beatles hit song in the '60s. Oh yes, it was definitely a Beatles’ Night with life-sized standees of the four young Beatles welcoming the guests—John Lennon, Paul McCartney, Ringo Starr and George Harrison.

And to complete the Beatlemania, AmCham “superwoman” Mila Espina came up with a Beatle trivia that had the guests going down memory lane for the answers.

Beautiful prizes were at stake. She also called onstage the ladies who were wearing outfits reminiscent of the '60s and gave prizes to the eight most authentic-looking ones.

The production numbers came from the Knapsack Dancers who were later joined by four AmCham members acting as Beatles with guitars and all—Vince Colina, Bill Mallory, Zafro Zaide and Ed Tongco. Then there were the Young Troubadors with Myles Ng on the lead with All My Loving; Amparito Llamas Lhullier Educational Foundation (Allef) alumni Jazzie Borato and Edwin Dilao with Help; and past president of AmCham John Domingo who dished out Imagine. After the entertainment numbers came dance time. Almost everyone was on the dance floor!
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