[Agent P’s Note: I should be blogging about Big Bang MADE in Manila first, but I decided to post this one instead because (1) I still need to sort, choose, resize and tag the photos from BB concert; (2) PH VIPs are still on #NaBigbangKa mode (check Twitter to know what it’s all about) and I don’t think they’re ready to reminisce about last Thursday’s concert just yet. Assuming anyone will bother to read it, that is. I’ll try to squeeze it in tonight, that is, if I still have time and energy to do things as I also have lots of stuff to do that has nothing to do with blogging.]
I have always wanted to watch Rak of Aegis since its first run. No, actually, it was my father who really, REALLY wanted to see Rak of Aegis since he first saw Aicelle Santos and Isay Alvarez promoting the play at a noontime show. However, we never really had the opportunity to check it out for whatever reason.
My friend Charity saw it last year when her company sponsored a show and she saw it a few times more after that. She highly recommended it to us. Unfortunately again, the shows got sold out pretty fast. So when production has announced that Rak of Aegis will have one last run, I had to make sure that I will see at least one show.
It was by stroke of luck that I saw Aegis – the band itself – mentioning on TV that they will be at the August 1 show, and Charity was able to score tickets for the already almost-sold out date.
Unfortunately (this is turning out to be a fortunately/unfortunately type of blog entry ), Lou and I got stuck in super-horrible traffic yesterday. It took us almost three hours from her home in Mandaluyong to PETA Theater in New Manila. No, it’s actually more than three hours from Mandaluyong to Betty Go-Belmonte Ave. in Quezon City which still 1.3 kilometers away from PETA Theater. As we were stuck on the same spot near the corner of Balete Drive and E.Rodriguez Sr. Avenue for nearly 40 minutes and Charity, who was already at the venue, texted that the show has already started, we just decided to walk the rest of the way. Long story short, we missed the first 30 minutes of the play.
Fortunately (see? ), Charity said that we walked in just as the main highlight of the story is unfolding and we only basically missed the character introductions. We still thoroughly enjoyed the show even if we missed a chunk of it.
My random comments:
1. Pansin ko lang, parang bawal ang hindi mahusay kumanta sa show na ito? Everyone in the cast are excellent singers. As in you can’t even rank them, they’re all really good. Whenever I watch musicals or concerts I am very particular about singing in tune. None of them missed a note.
2. I have always loved Aicelle Santos, even way back her Pinoy Pop Superstar days. I love the rich tone of her voice and the fact that she’s always on key even while dancing, running around, climbing stairs, etc. This was actually what impressed a lot of people when she participated (and won) Eat Bulaga’s #AegisPaMore contest. Seeing her in Rak of Aegis cemented my admiration of her. She’s one of those female singers who can ‘birit’ without making me grit my teeth in annoyance.
3. I’ve been hearing a lot about Jerald Napoles as Tolits (mainly from Charity who’s been #TeamTolits from the beginning), particularly how he manages to steal every show he’s in. I first saw him in Magsimula Ka! and re-reading that blog entry now made me realize that I had the same comment about him: he stands out in every show he’s in. He’s quite a nice guy, too. People were crowding all over him at the Meet and Greet after the show and he tries his best to give everyone a chance to take pics with him. Even if Cha had to literally grab his arm and pull him over so that we can take a photo.
4. The actress who played Mary Jane – Stella Mendoza, if I’m not mistaken – nailed the Barangay Captain role with precise accuracy. I work with Kapitanas on a regular basis; she looked and talked exactly like them.
5. The story itself and the in-jokes are very Pinoy, which might explain why it’s so popular. I love that they manage to update snippets the dialog to match with what’s ‘in’ these days (eg., the mention of ‘Pabebe’). Also, mad props to that PA announcer who also brings in the laughs. I won’t go into detail in case anyone who hasn’t seen the show will read this. I don’t want to spoil the fun for you.
The show ends, and then came the post-show with Aegis band that made the night a million times more awesome.
Seryoso. Saan kumukuha ng taas ng boses ang mga babaeng ito???? And they’re not grating to the ears, huh!
Special mention must be made about that ‘isa pa!’ (one more!) segment of Sinta where Aegis’ Juliet Sunot challenged cast member Phi Palmos (who fabulously played Jewel in the musical) to sing the chorus one step higher at every repeat. He tried it out four times IIRC, which means Phi sang it at least four octaves higher. If you know the song, you’re probably like this right now: .
Side note: It was such a delight to watch an audience that is composed mainly of people from the alta-sociedad, about a quarter of which are senior citizens, that unanimously headbanged and sang along with Aegis. This band’s demographics are to die for.
All in all, I really regret not seeing Rak of Aegis sooner. I highly recommend it to anyone, that is, anyone who can still manage to score tickets for its last few play dates.