We just capped off a successful first week of shows for Bluerep’s 13 the Musical - by successful, I don’t mean that we had SRO (Standing Room Only) or full houses. By successful, I mean that we touched so many lives by the story that we shared (live) with our audiences. I rush to Ateneo from ABS-CBN and my other preoccupations everyday; not necessarily to sit through the two-hour piece but just to be surrounded by the energy of the team that brings in to life every day. It’s become my addiction - and seemingly, my life stopped when 13 opened.
That’s the story of my life. I get so tangled up in other commitments, wanting to try other things but always, theater brings me back. It’s kind of like the story of Edie Beale and the Grey Gardens - the one where she wants to leave her mother who she has developed some parasitic relationship with. They’ve become so antagonizing, always fighting - like it’s preventing the younger Beale from moving on with the rest of her life. And just when she finds the courage and strength to leave, the mother beckons. And she drops her suitcases and unwillingly (but willingly) returns.
That’s the kind of relationship I have with the theater. It’s a love hate relationship. I love it because it’s where I feel most alive. I hate it because it’s so marginalized. And being part of a marginalized sector where sure, you do your damned hardest and yet you don’t reap the rewards accordingly - whether financially on the business or performing side, or the kind of support that other industries get.
Makes me wonder - is everything nowadays a PR effort? Or does reception or success rest solely on hype as opposed quality and content? Is there something we’re not doing right? I want to know the answer to those questions.
I can’t stop though. I’m 25 and on my quarter life, and I have 75 years (or less) to try and shed light on these questions (and also give back to the industry and passion that I love). I will be theater’s Edie Beale.
The theater will find it’s sexy back at some point.
In the meantime, hope you can catch 13 the Musical which is approaching its second week of shows. It’s no Phantom of the Opera behemoth but I guarantee you’ll enjoy and maybe cry a little :)