9 must-see acts from Fringe Manila

Dindin Reyes
9 must-see acts from Fringe Manila
Check out this list of must-see acts from Fringe Manila festival director, Andrei Pamintuan

When was the last time art made you feel? 

Do you remember the last time you tensed up with emotion at the sights and sounds of a single piece of work? 

Whether you’re all too familiar with these moments or you can’t recall ever having feelings like these, Fringe Manila is here to present them to you on a silver platter – with generous servings.

Ongoing until March 1, 2015, the Fringe Manila arts festival showcases local and international productions that define what it is to be daring, new and uncompromising.

In venues scattered around Manila, acts from the scenes of performance art, theater, poetry, music, dance, comedy and the visual arts will dare you to think and more importantly, to feel. 

Over the span of weeks, Fringe Manila is hosting 100 events with over 300 performances in more than 20 venues around the metro.

Out of all of these, festival director Andrei Pamintuan presents suggestions on what acts you shouldn’t miss:

1. Dance Until You Shatter Yourself – Daniel Darwin

DANCE UNTIL YOU SHATTER YOURSELF. Daniel Darwin whirls in a frenzy of feeling. Photo by Dindin Reyes

Dance Until You Shatter Yourself is a one-man performance from Daniel Darwin, also known in the Philippines as AstroBoy, the winner of Talentadong Pinoy’s Battle of the Champions in 2012.

Darwin brings hooping to the Fringe Manila stage, using his hula hoop to ask a question, “When all other meanings fall away, what is there left to believe?” In his durational movement piece, Darwin explores the limits of human endurance as he goes round and round in his hoop, riding the rise and fall of motion and emotion. 

 

  • Venue: Tanghalang Huseng Batute, Cultural Center of the Philippines
  • Date and time: February 26 8pm & March 1 3pm
  • Ticket price: P300

 

2. Russian psychology: Kaso Uno – Russ Ligtas

CAPTIVATING. Russ Ligtas takes the audience on a ride of honest emotion. Photo by Dindin Reyes

Russian psychology: Kaso Uno is a piece from performance artist Russ Ligtas that will make you hold your breath. As an artist, Ligtas has a set of alter egos, versions of himself he acts out on stage in order to explore reality and the self. Russian Psychology: Kaso Uno is no different. Through song, dance and spoken word, his alter egos confront the audience with his insights into individuality. It’s an inescapable experience you have no choice but to participate in. 

 

  • Venue: SDA Black Box Theater, SDA building, College of Saint Benilde
  • Date and time: February 21 9pm & February 28 3pm
  • Tickets: P300, P200 for students

 

3. Bathala Na: Brian Moreno

Photo from the Fringe Manila website

An experience of light, sound and motion, Brian Moreno offers more than a dance performance. In this piece aptly titled Bathala Na, Moreno invites the audience to share his experience of the divine as he explores his spiritual journey through physical movement. It’s a personal experience he lives out through solo contemporary dance.

 

  • Venue: SDA Black Box Theater, SDA building, College of Saint Benilde
  • Date and time: March 1, 8pm
  • Tickets: By donation 

 

4. Kwentong Komyut #MiddleClassProblems

Photo from the Fringe Manila website  

If you’ve ever been turned down by a taxi driver or flattened to a pulp in an MRT, this is probably for you. ‘Kwentong Komyut #MiddleClassProblems’ is the story of the everyday struggle that is Manila commuting, brought to you in five plays. Based on real life encounters in different modes of public transportation, the plays are there to sympathize with you and poke fun at your ‘middle class problems.’

 

  • Venue: Tanghalang Huseng Batute, Cultural Center of the Philippines
  • Date and time: February 21 2:30pm, February 22 8pm, March 1 5pm & March 1 8pm
  • Ticket price: P300

 

5. The Boy in the Bathroom

Photo from the Fringe Manila website  

The Boy in the Bathroom is musical about a 25-year-old named David. One day David locks himself in a bathroom – his life comes to a grinding halt. Add in obsessive compulsive disorder, David’s mother Pam and the fresh face in his life, Julie, and it makes for a touching story about family and the facing the unknown. A restaging from The Sandbox Collective, The Boy in the Bathroom is directed by Toff de Venecia. It stars Topper Fabregas, Caisa Borromeo and Sheila Francisco.

 

  • Venue: Tanghalang Huseng Batute, Cultural Center of the Philippines
  • Date and time: February 19 8pm & February 21 5:30pm
  • Tickets: P800 for seats in stalls, P600 for seats in the gallery

 

6. Pop up Fringe: Music

Posters from the Fringe Manila Facebook page

Fringe Manila has something for everyone, including the music lovers. Fringe Manila has 17 music programs all over the city, running steadily until February 28. Performances are from different types of music, ranging from established to emerging artists.

Find something new to add to your playlist with acts from independent music labels and productions. For the full schedule and the list of artists at each venue, visit Fringe Manila’s Facebook page.

7. Hamlet – Ikarus

Photo from the Fringe Manila website

Theater company Ikarus presents the Shakespeare classic Hamlet. What makes this staging different? Director Jay Crisostomo uses dance, film, and deconstructed set and costume designs to tell the age-old story the Ikarus way. The company closes its very first season with Hamlet and the dramatic question, “To be or not to be?”

 

  • Venue: Dito: Bahay ng Sining
  • Date and time: February 20, 21 & 22 8pm
  • Tickets: P350, P1575 for a group of 5

 

8. Transitio

Photo from the Fringe Manila website

Transitio Manila is an annual event that commemorates the battle of Manila in 1945. A key turning point in Philippine history, it’s remembered in this event with performances, art installations, and the release of lanterns in the city of Manila. On its 7th year, 2015’s Transitio will be the grand closing to Fringe Manila.

  • Venue: Fort Santiago, Intramuros Manila
  • Date and time: March 1, 3pm

9. Ch’an culture

Photo from the Fringe Manila website

On the first day, you can catch a special one-stroke calligraphy exhibition by Venerable Master Hsing Yun. The Fo Guang Shan order will also share other practices of theirs such as meditation, tea ceremonies, as well as an exhibition of their instruments.

  • Venue: Fo Guang Shan Mabuhay Temple, Malate, Manila
  • Dates: February 26, 27, 2

Additionally, don’t forget the Chinese New Year celebrations, always an important occasion for the Filipino-Chinese community in the country.

Photo from the Fringe Manila website

Ring in the Chinese New Year at the Mabuhay temple in Manila. Highlights of the celebration will include the Lion Dance and the Jasmine Blossom dance as performed by scholars from the Fo Guang College and the World-ship Orchestra of Japan. The Fo Guang Shan order will also share their Buddhist practices on this day, a treat for those who want to start the new year with a fresh perspective.

  • Venue: Fo Guang Shan Mabuhay Temple, Malate, Manila
  • Dates: February 18, 8:30pm

Dare yourself to do something new. The fresh and the groundbreaking have come to your doorstep, and it’s now time to come meet it. 

Saturate yourself with emotion this month and experience art at the fringes.  

For the full schedule of the Fringe Manila arts festival, visit fringemanila.com – Rappler.com

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