‘Lapulapu, Ang Datu ng Mactan’ relevant to Filipinos in pandemic, scriptwriter says

ABS-CBN News

Posted at Oct 12 2021 09:29 PM

Photo credit: Paul Sugano & Rhon Paolo Velarde, NCCA
Photo credit: Paul Sugano & Rhon Paolo Velarde, NCCA

While it has been 500 years since Filipino hero Lapulapu fought for the country against colonizers, his story remains significant and relevant to the current situation of the Philippines amid the health crisis, a scriptwriter said.

During the virtual media launch of the musical play “Lapulapu, Ang Datu ng Mactan”, scriptwriter Nick Pichay said that the story has relevance to the present life of Filipinos fighting against the COVID-19 pandemic. 

Pichay said the theater play will look back at the heroism of Lapulapu and other people in Philippine history.

“Kwento rin ito ng mga tauhang hindi masyado nasusulat sa mga librong pang kasaysayan dahil ang mga sumulat ng librong pangkasaysayan na iyon ay hindi masyadong kampi sa atin,” Pichay said. 

“Gayong hango sa kasaysayan, may kinalaman din ang dula na ito sa atin ngayon bilang mga Pilipino na namumuhay sa ilalim ng pandemya.”

He also opened up about the several themes he incorporated in the musical play such as courage and unity, aside from tackling the issues of colonization and globalization.

“Sa pagsusulat ng dula, naglaro ako sa ideya ng memorya, kasaysayan, mito at ang misteryong elemento ng oras. Tungkol naman sa tema, tapang at pagkakaisa ang isa sa mga tema ng dula,” Pichay quipped. 

“Sa kalaunan, binibigkis tayo ng kwento ni Lapulapu para magkaisa...Nawa'y makatulong ang dula sa pagbubuklod natin bilang isang matatag na bayan at matapang na tao,” he added. 

The National Commission for Culture and the Arts (NCCA) on Tuesday spearheaded the launch of the show that was delayed a couple of times due to the pandemic. 

According to some of the actors set to star in the play, it was challenging for them to prepare for the show in a short span of time amid strict protocols imposed because of the health crisis. 

“For a normal production kasi, it will run for 2 to 3 months normally dito sa atin sa Philippines. Yung 3 months na yun kinompress namin in two weeks. So, whole day namin was allotted for the whole production. Luckily, we're very fortunate kasi sobrang maraming nag-alaga sa'min,” said Al Gatmaitan, who will play as Antonio Pigafetta.

Natasha Cabrera, who will portray Babalaylan, added the importance of doing research for the characters before going into the rehearsals. 

“Every magbibigay sila ng update...kailangan ko mag-research kasi ayokong pumasok ng theater na hindi handa. Kasi ilang linggo lang yun na ita-trabaho namin. Yun po yung challenge, yung paghihintay,” she said. 

The “Lapulapu, Ang Datu ng Mactan” will be digitally streamed on October 24.