MANILA, Philippines – A lot of unsung heroes have sacrificed their lives during the turbulent days of the martial law. One of them is Lean Alejandro. Now, his life story will again be the subject of the forthcoming musical “Lean.”
As part of their 41st anniversary, the UP Repertory is set to do a remake of the Lean Alejandro Musical, originally written by folk singer/composer Gary Granada.
Lean Alejandro Musical first took center stage in 1997. The original cast included renowned artists like Chikoy Pura, Bayang Barrios, Cookie Chua, and Noel Cabangon.
Directed by UP Repertory alumna Kathryn Manga and re-arranged by Karl Ramirez, “Lean” promises to recreate the pictures that defined his era and celebrate social relevance through a full list of meaningful and catchy songs.
“I want the youth to realize what Lean Alejandro has proven during his time, that being an iskolar ng bayan is not a privilege. It should be a form of service that we dedicate to the masses,” Manga said in Filipino.
Gone too soon at the age of 27, Alejandro became an iconic leader to many young people, particularly the activists.
His fight for freedom and democracy began when he joined the Philippine Collegian, the student newspaper of the University of the Philippines Diliman. Defying the Marcos regime, Alejandro fearlessly wrote articles criticizing the administration.
The musical does not only chronicle the story of Lean Alejandro but also echoes the plight of the Filipino people at the time.
Sign of protest
Four decades after, the story of this student activist during the tumultuous time of the martial law promises to still elicit familiar emotions from the audience.
At a time when the clamor to abolish the pork barrel and to end other corrupt practices in the government is gaining momentum, the musical proves to be timely and relevant.
The cast is composed of modern “Lean Alejandros,” active progressive student leaders of today’s generation. Lean Alejandro will be portrayed by Vencer Crisostomo and Odraude Alub – both activist youth leaders.
Lean Alejandro musical will run on September 9, 14, 16, 21 (3pm and 7pm), and September 13 and 20 (7pm only) at the Aldaba Hall in UP Diliman. Tickets are available at P250 for non-UP students and P200 for UP students.
As a sign of protest to the high cost of stage shows and to make the musical accessible, “Lean” will also be performed at the historic AS steps in UP Diliman on September 21. – Rappler.com