June 4, 2023

Sandbox Fest 2023: BACK after a breather with a twin bill performance

Three years after Sandbox Fest 2020—a month-long festival featuring the works of English playwright Duncan Macmillan—came to an abrupt halt in March 2020, The Sandbox Collective returns to breathe new life and begin again with SANDBOX FEST 2023, a twin bill experience featuring Duncan Macmillan plays Every Brilliant Thing and Lungs.
SANDBOX FEST 2023 will be sold exclusively as a twin bill experience: one ticket, two shows, one breathtakingly brilliant experience. Audiences will have the opportunity to purchase a single, same-day ticket good for both shows. The shows will run one after the other, with a 20-minute interval in between. While twin bills are not an entirely new concept in theater, spending three hours at the theater might be unfamiliar to some Manila theatergoers. The Sandbox Collective’s managing artistic director, Toff de Venecia, hopes that SANDBOX FEST 2023 will give audiences a fresh perspective on how one experiences theater: “I’m very excited for the twin-bill experience of Duncan Macmillan’s works, and see how these award-winning one-act plays will resonate with each other, adding to how the world has changed dramatically since we first staged them in 2018 and 2019, thereby impacting the audience’s overall experience and takeaway.”

The last time Lungs was set to be staged In March 2020, the actors and The Sandbox Collective’s creative team sought to answer the questions, "What world are we leaving the future generations?" and "Even if I wanted children, with everything going on around us, what kind of world would I be leaving them?" Already incredibly topical questions in March 2020, they carry even more emotional weight now. Three years down the road, the world has changed in exactly the way the play’s characters feared. On the heels of those questions comes a new one, brought on by the current state of our society: what does it mean to stage a play with characters so fearful of a far-off future in our present time, now that so many of those fears have come true in the real world?
During its original 2018 run, Lungs received seven Gawad Buhay nominations, including Female Lead Performance in a Play for returning cast member Sab Jose. For SANDBOX FEST 2023, Sab will be joined by Gawad Buhay-nominated theater actor Reb Atadero, who was last seen in Breakups & Breakdowns and Ang Huling El Bimbo. The 2023 run will also welcome theater actors Brian Sy & Justine Peña as they step into the shoes of Lung’s anxiety-ridden characters. Justine’s performance in Uncle Jane earlier this year was lauded by critics and theatergoers alike, while Brian’s turn in Coriolano was met with widespread acclaim, garnering him a Gawad Buhay Award for Best Male Featured Performance in 2020. Serving as the show’s assistant director in 2018 and 2020, Gawad Buhay Awardee Caisa Borromeo now takes the reins as the director for Lungs.

In 2019, The Sandbox Collective took an enormous leap of faith with the premiere of Every Brilliant Thing, praying that Filipino audiences were ready to hear and see its burgeoning message of hope amidst mental illness. Four years later, as the Philippine theater industry continues to recover and find its footing in a post-pandemic world, Every Brilliant Thing’s message to find joy in the mundane, and to appreciate the everyday is more relevant than ever.

Once again taking on the challenge of this one-woman show is actress, model and TV host Teresa Herrera, who will alternate performances with theater actress, multimedia host, entrepreneur and Gawad Buhay Awardee Kakki Teodoro (Outstanding Female Lead/EBT). Both Herrera and Teodoro picked up Gawad Buhay nominations for Outstanding Female Lead for the 2019 run of Every Brilliant Thing. A new, surprise cast member will also be teased and announced in the coming days. Jenny Jamora will once again be stepping in as director, having directed all its previous runs, and winning Outstanding Stage Direction for a Play at the 12th Gawad Buhay Awards.
Philippine theater, like the rest of the world, has changed immensely since the curtains last rose in 2020. But audiences can find comfort in the fact that the core of both shows remains unchanged: at its heart, SANDBOX FEST 2023 celebrates the innate goodness of people, the human capacity to overcome both internal and external struggles, and the desire to heal both ourselves and the world around us.

Rounding out the artistic team are Arvy Dimaculangan as sound designer, Miggy Panaganiban as lighting designer and Krystal Kane as costume stylist. Heading the production team are The Sandbox Collective’s managing artistic director Toff De Venecia, Anna Santamaria as operations & finance director, Sab Jose as marketing & PR director and Maine Manalansan as design director. Joining the team are Salve Villarosa as marketing and PR manager, Loreta Arroyo as marketing and PR associate, Shai Libunao as promo and creatives associate, Marielle Filoteo as social media associate, Marcel David as production manager (Sandbox Fest 2023) and stage manager (Every Brilliant Thing), and Pachot Festejo as stage manager (Lungs).

SANDBOX FEST 2023 will run at the Zobel de Ayala Recital Hall, 2/F Maybank Performing Arts Theater, 9th Avenue cor. 26th Street, BGC, Taguig City from June 17- July 15, 2023.

No comments:

Post a Comment

Be kind to post your insights. Thanks.

Popular Posts