The Sandbox Collective, in its first collaboration with sister company 9 Works Theatrical wayback in February 2018, restaged one of Philippine theater’s finest and most prized possessions—Ricky Lee and Vincent A. deJesus’ HIMALA: ISANG MUSIKAL.
Based on the cinematic masterpiece by Ricky Lee and Ishmael Bernal, Himala or “miracle”. With music and lyrics by Vincent A. deJesus and book and lyrics by Ricky Lee, Himala broke barriers as one of the most celebrated film-to-stage adaptations in Philippine theater history. Himala: Isang Musikal returns to the stage this year to cap off a milestone season for both The Sandbox Collective and 9 Works Theatrical, as they celebrate five and ten years in the industry, respectively. With fresh, new faces and refined orchestrations that are poised to make the soundscape even more hauntingly beautiful.
Opening on September 20, 2019 and will have a limited engagement until October 20, 2019 at the Powermac Center Spotlight in Circuit Makati.
Here’s an exclusive peek at the some performance photos of 9 Works Theatrical and The Sandbox Collective’s HIMALA Isang Musikal:
Photographs by Erickson Dela Cruz
Fresh from her West End debut as “Gigi” in Miss Saigon, multimedia star Aicelle Santos makes her highly anticipated comeback in the role of Elsa, for which she recently won a Philstage Gawad Buhay Award for Outstanding Female Lead Performance in a Musical. The multiawarded singer and host holds the title of being the “First Undefeated Pop Superstar” having achieved eight straight wins in the nationwide search, Pinoy Pop Superstar. Some of her recent theater credits include Rak of Aegis, Katy! the Musical, and Maynila sa mga Kuko ng Liwanag, for which she received an Aliw Award and a Philstage Gawad Buhay Award for Female Featured
Performance in a Musical.
Philstage Gawad Buhay nominees, Kakki Teodoro and Neomi Gonzales both return to their roles of Nimia and Chayong, respectively. Teodoro and Gonzales both received nominations for their critically-acclaimed performances in last year’s run of Himala. Teodoro was most recently seen in The Sandbox Collective’s Every Brilliant Thing, which also earned her a Philstage Gawad Buhay semestral citation. Gonzales was most recently seen in 9 Works Theatrical’s Eto Na! Musikal nAPO!, winner of the 2019 PHILSTAGE Gawad Buhay Award for Outstanding Musical – Original. David Ezra reprises his role as the troubled filmmaker, Orly. A back-to-back Aliw Awardee, Ezra was most recently seen in Mabining Mandirigma and Ang Huling El Bimbo.
Meanwhile, Gawad Buhay and Aliw Award nominee, Floyd Tena also reprises his role as ‘pari’ (priest) in this year’s staging of Himala. Tena was most recently seen in Binondo and Musikal nAPO!
Marking her return to Barrio Cupang is legendary actress and singer, May Bayot-De Castro. She joins the 2019 production of Himala: Isang Musikal in the role of Nanay Saling. Ms. Bayot-De Castro is known for playing the iconic role of “Elsa” in the 2003 original stage adaptation, for which she won the Aliw Award for Best Actress in a Musical. A certified leading lady in Philippine theater, some of her notable performances include Once On This Island, Rama at Sita, Kung Paano Ako Naging Leading Lady, Kleptomaniacs, Ibalong, Sandosenang Sapatos, Carmen and Skin Deep, which earned her a Philstage Gawad Buhay Award for Best Actress in a Musical.
Alternating for the role of Nanay Saling is West End alumna and Philstage Gawad Buhay awardee, Ms. Sheila Francisco, who has the distinct achievement of being nominated for three different productions and categories in a single year. Francisco is also known for having been the very first Filipina to perform at the prestigious National Theater in London, where she received critical acclaim for her performance as “Bloody Mary” in South Pacific’s London and UK Tour. Some of her recent credits include: Portrait Of An Empress, Ang Huling El Bimbo,
Cinderella, La Cage Aux Folles, The Boy In The Bathroom and A Doll’s House Part 2, for which she recently won a Philstage Gawad Buhay Award.
Vic Robinson is thrilled to be celebrating his 10th year in the industry by joining the cast of Himala: Isang Musikal. He is set to alternate with Sandino Martin in the role of Pilo. An actor, commercial model and voice talent, Robinson’s professional career took off when he played the title role in Si Juan Tamad. Some of his notable theater credits include: Sa Wakas. Ang Diyablo at ang Limang Milyong Boto, Batang Rizal, Lola Basyang, FnL, Ako Si Josephine, Tagutaguan and Singapura.
Rounding out the cast are Jon Abella, Roxy Aldiosa, Sigrid Balbas, Gene Barsaga, Jay Barrameda, Patricia Bermudez, Raflesia Bravo, Joshua Cabiladas, Dannielle Cruz, Christian Cusi, Katreen Dela Cruz, Angelo Esperanzate, Marielle Estalani, Mano Domingo, Kits Falcis, Jef Flores, Nel Gumalog, Pam Imperial, Sean Inocencio, Jasper Jimenez, Gary Junsay, Glenda Liao, Alvin Maghanoy, Roby Malubay, Hazel Maranan, Eizel Marcelo, Nathan Molina, Red Nuestro, Ivan Panganiban, Matel Patayon, Cristy Peredo, Neil Ericson Tolentino, Onyl Torres and Jenny Villegas.
Award-winning director, Ed Lacson, Jr., returns to the director’s chair in this year’s re-run of Himala: Isang Musikal. He also doubles as the show’s set designer. Multi-awarded composer and lyricist, Vincent A. deJesus, is at the helm once again as composer, lyricist and musical director. Completing the artistic team are Ricky Lee as writer and lyricist, Barbie Tan-Tiongco as lighting designer, Carlo Pagunaling as costume designer, Jed Balsamo as music consultant, JM Cabling as assistant to the director and Ejay Yatco as assistant musical director.
Toff De Venecia leads the production team as co-executive producer alongside Santi Santamaria, for The Sandbox Collective and 9 Works Theatrical, respectively. Completing the team are Anna Santamaria as operations and finance director, Sab Jose as marketing and PR director, Maine Manalansan as design director, Erwin Romulo as creative consultant, Charyl De Guzman as production manager, Jonjon Martin as public relations manager and Mara Agleham as head stage manager.
Ricky Lee and Vincent A. deJesus’ HIMALA: ISANG MUSIKAL is co-presented by The Sandbox Collective and 9 Works Theatrical, in commemoration of their 10/5 anniversaries.