Ballet PH turns Shakespeare comedy to dance

By Jude Cartalaba

Posted at Feb 14 2013 07:41 PM | Updated as of Feb 15 2013 07:17 PM

Soloist Cyril Fallar alternates as Puck in Ballet Philippines' "A Midsummer Night's Dream"

MANILA, Philippines – Ballet Philippines, the resident dance company of the Cultural Center of the Philippines (CCP), has chosen William Shakespeare’s comedy "A Midsummer Night’s Dream" to close its 43rd season, company's president former Miss Universe Margie Moran-Floirendo, said.

The show will run on February 15 (at 3 p.m. and 8 p.m.) and February 16 and 17 (at 2 p.m. and 6 p.m.) as a post-Valentine offering.

Hong Kong-based Filipino choreographer Carlo Pacis, who won the 2010 Philstage Gawad Buhay Award for Outstanding Choreography for his work for Ballet Philippines’ "Shifting Wait," placed an unexpected twist to this Shakespeare masterpiece, which has been staged many times around the globe.

Known for his creative and seamless fusing of choreography with design and theatrical devices, Pacis worked with set designer Ricardo G. Cruz and costume designer Eric Pineda in incorporating interactive multimedia to help move the story-telling with a fresh take.

"'A Midsummer Night’s Dream' is such a fun, comedic ballet, and the youthful energy of Ballet Philippines is perfect for it,” Pacis said of his latest opus.

The story weaves together the lives of mortals and fairies— Oberon, the king of the fairies, and Titania, his queen, are fighting over an Indian changeling. To punish her, Oberon instructs the mischievous Puck to place the juice of the Love-in-Idleness flower on her eyes so she falls in love with the first living thing she sees. Oberon also instructs Puck to place the juice on a young mortal man, whom he sees spurning a young woman.

Unfortunately, Puck makes a mistake and creates chaos in the forest as he puts the juice on Lysander, smitten with Hermia, instead of Demetrius, who rejects Helena’s love because he yearns for Hermia. Lysander awakens, sees Helena and falls in love with her.

To right his wrong, Puck places the juice on Demetrius’ eyes; who also sees Helena when he awakens. Then Titania, after getting juice on her eyes, awakens and sets her eyes on a man with a donkey’s head. The play ends with an unforgettable romantic comedy of errors between man and magical beings.

Ballet Philippines’ gems Katherine Trofeo, Richarson Yadao, Carissa Adea and Jean Marc Cordero star in this latest production with guest principal dancer Kris Belle Paclibar-Mamangun.

With the neo-Filipino contemporary productions regularly mounted by the dance company, Moran-Floirendo said she is positive about the continuous support for BP's 200 scholars, as well as contributing to the further enhancement of the country's dance scene, particularly ballet.

For tickets and inquiries, please contact Ballet Philippines at (02) 551-1003 and (02) 551-7919 or Ticketworld at (02) 891-9999.