Bibeth Orteza, 5 ‘virgin’ playwrights selected for 2020 Virgin Labfest

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The works of Bibeth Orteza and five other “virgin” playwrights have been selected from a pool of 290 submissions for the 16th edition of the Virgin Labfest, the annual festival of untried, untested, unstaged, and unpublished theater works, which runs June 10 – 28, 2020, at the Cultural Center of the Philippines.

The 2020 VLF virgins are: Sorsogon-based writer Jobert Landeza who penned “Titser Kit;” Mark Norman Boquiren, with his “Mayang Bubot sa Tag-araw;” Floyd Tiogangco, with “Pilot Episode;” Daryl Pasion, with “Papaano Turuan Ang Babae Humawak ng Baril;” Luis Nario, with “Gin Bilog;” and film director Orteza who is the only woman playwright, with “Bituing Marikit.”

Completing the final list are: Tyron Casumpang, with “Black Pink;” Anthony Kim Vergara, with “The Boy Boy and Friends Channel;” Juliene Mendoza, with “Multiverse;” Jay Crisostomo, with “Dapithapon;” Juan Ekis, with “‘Nay May Dala akong Pansit;” and Dustin Celestino, “Doggy.” These six playwrights have participated in the previous editions of the festival.

For the Stage Readings, six works have been selected; three of which are written by “virgin” playwrights, namely “Jenny Li” by Buch Dacanay, “Matira ang Matibay” by Bernice Dacara, and “Mongoloida’s Casa de Pun” by Claro delos Reyes.

Other featured stage reading works are: “Lady Masters” by Rouchelle Dinglasan, “Bagahe” by Nicko de Guzman, and “Dominador Gonzales – National Artist” by Dingdong Novenario.

VLF festival director JK Aninoche expressed his gratitude to all the writers who “have shared their visions and voices to us.”

The 12 finalists chosen for full-staging were selected from the 290 submitted entries.

Rody Vera, VLF founder and former festival director, and dramaturg Ina Azarcon Bolivar assisted in this year’s unique set of plays.

“I’m very excited on the richness of thought-making and breadth and depth of representation of human condition and contemporary life in this year’s edition of the VLF. Masayang may mga kasama sa pagsulong at paglikha. I’m looking forward to the VLF as a collaborative development platform for untried, untested, and unstaged plays,” Aninoche said.

Co-presented by the Cultural Center of the Philippines, Tanghalang Pilipino, and the playwrights’ group Writer’s Bloc Inc., this year’s VLF is themed “Rurok.”

Established in 2005, the VLF aims to provide Filipino playwrights a venue to present their unpublished, untried, untested, and unstaged works to the theater-going public.

Follow VLF on Social Media, or visit for more information and promo.

#virginlabfest #vlf16 #vlf2020 #vlfrurok #CCPVirginLabfest #untrieduntestedunstaged

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