It’s almost midnight, and I can’t sleep. Still exhilarated after watching The King and I’s preview.
Entering the award-winning Newport Performing Arts Theater in Resorts World Manila for the first time, I felt like Dorothy in Wizard of Oz and muttered, “Toto, I’ve a feeling we’re not in Kansas anymore.” The plush red seats, stage, lights, acoustics and very friendly RWM staff helped us get into the mood for the performance. And it was a performance we will never forget indeed.
When we saw the lavish set designs and costumes, we joined the oohs and aahs, and the world-class Filipino thespians hadn’t even begun singing yet. I knew I wouldn’t be disappointed with the stellar cast, and true enough The Leo Valdez as King and The Monique Wilson as Anna gave me chills everytime they came onstage and sang. I am still giddy like a fan-girl even now. What delighted me even more was Lorenz Martinez, who played Lun Tha. It was the first time we heard him sing, and my husband and I agreed that he could very well be the Michael Crawford of the Philippines, or the next Michael Crawford, period.
Update: I finally got the name of the lady who played Tuptim – Ms. Tanya Manalang. Her performance was wonderful too!
I’m sure I wasn’t the only one humming along classics like, “Whistle a Happy Tune”, “Getting to Know You”, “We Kiss in the Shadows” or “Hello Young Lovers”. We laughed, we cried, we clapped and swooned. Directed by Freddie Santos (who has won Aliw Awards THREE times), this is a show for the whole family to see. Even our five-year-old boy enjoyed it so much, he said, “That was the best theater show I’ve ever seen!” So be sure to watch starting September 15!
PS: To our fairy godmother (you know who you are) – we thank God for you, and we thank you for giving us this beautiful memory. We love you! (As you requested, I kept my promise to keep you anonymous.)