By Ibarra C. Mateo
A play written by award-winning playwright Eljay Castro Deldoc and directed by Riki Benedicto will have its international gala performance on Sept. 9 in Quebec, Canada.
“13th of September” had been chosen as the Philippine official entry to the 9th Festival International de Theatre De Mont-Laurier and will be staged at the Espace Theatre located at 543 Rue du Pont Local in Quebec. It is also the only play selected from Southeast Asia to join the festival in Quebec.
13th of September had a series of performances at the Erehwon Performing Arts Theater in Quezon City and at the Zobel de Ayala Recital Hall, Maybank Performing Arts Theater in Taguig City before its Canadian gala.
The 9th Festival International de Theatre De Mont-Laurier is a biennial theater festival, which runs Sept. 5-11, with 25 companies from 19 countries participating.
The Philippines is the only Southeast Asian country which was selected to join the festival since its launch in 2003.
The following countries are participating: Algeria, Argentina, Bangladesh, Belgium, Canada, Colombia, Dominican Republic, Egypt, France, Italy, Morocco, Mexico, the Philippines, Poland, Romania, and Syria.
The artistic and production team of 13th of September is composed of: Benedicto (director), Deldoc (playwright), Drew Espenocilla (dramaturg / English translation), Jay Lorenz Conanan (production / costume designer), Katreen dela Cruz (stage manager), Roldan Lozano (lights designer), Ces Valera (projection artist), Paw Castillo (photo and graphic artist), and Jared Acuna (video artist).
Be Our Guest Theatricals is a group of professional theater and film practitioners based in Manila. The group’s major goal is to create and produce shows for different international theater festivals.
The group aims to boost the presence of the Philippine theater in the international scene.
13th of September is about Mary Girard who is preparing for her last night in Pennsylvania Asylum. Now, 56, her age is visible after more than two decades of re-living the moments of her life inside the asylum.
While doing her daily routine and preparation with other patients, her past is dawning inside her, the memories of her mother, husband, and her dear daughter are right in front of her. It seems like she’s “sane” once again.
As for her last night with the tranquilizing chair, she will fight and re-live the moments of lies and betrayal that have never been proven.
Adore Dominguez, Marco Edward Calilao, and Paolo Rodriguez are cast members.
Director Benedicto puts forward another universal concern in Deldoc’s 13th of September, where he aspires to “challenge society’s restrictive definition of sanity, gender, and sexuality or even one’s perception of truth – truth is relative.”
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