A few weeks ago, a noteworthy theater news site published something that, in my personal opinion, was so poorly researched and misrepresentative of Philippine theater history that the regional editor in charge actually had to apologize for the article later on, as it had to led to fury and indignation directed at himself and his writer.
To add insult to injury, said editor admonished his critics with the treacly request to nurture and educate the new voices in our industry, while washing his hands off of his failure to do either for his unfortunate writer.
Nevertheless, he had a point. It really is the duty of artists to educate people about the work that goes into performing. Hence this blog.
I have several interests, but a substantial part of my core is devoted to the art and discipline of theater. Another part, after some initial reluctance to recognize it, is very much an educator. Finally, the last substantial part is that of a gamer who loves playing with narrative as much as he likes reading and watching it. Hopefully I get to merge all three. (Yes guys, I am saying it here: role-playing games, or RPGs, count as theater, and I will discuss them with the same rigor that I do productions.)
As Sutton Foster sings in the song “Astonishing” in Little Women: Here I go, and there’s no turning back; my brave adventure has begun!
—October 2015, Metro Manila, the Philippines
Mahar Abrera Mangahas graduated from Ateneo de Manila University with a Fine Arts degree in Theatre Arts. Professionally, he has served as the dramaturge for 33 Variations (Red Turnip), and The Normal Heart (AAI/TNT). His work has appeared in CCP’s Pasinaya Festival (“Singkit”, with Laura Cabochan), though he writes plays that seldom get published, for he is a truly greedy fellow.
He is an educator, and has been teaching for 13 years.