The story of Andres Bonifacio in a musical play

In line with the 150th birth anniversary of Filipino nationalist and revolutionary hero Andres Bonifacio (Andres Bonifacio y de Castro: November 30, 1863 - May 10, 1897) this year, Philippine Stagers Foundation (PSF) presents its new musical play (zarzuela or sarsuwela) "Bonifacio: Isang Sarswela" this July. PSF is the theater company that garnered three BroadwayWorld.com (BWW) Philippines awards for their banner production in 2012.

Written and directed  by Vincent M. Tañada, "Bonifacio: Isang Sarswela" will have its Press Preview Night at the Tanghalang Pasigueño in Pasig City on July 19, 6:00 p.m., with the writer and director himself performing as Andres Bonifacio. He will be joined by PSF's own home-grown artists, including BWW Philippines awardee Cindy Liper as Gregoria De Jesus, Aliw Awards nominee Jordan Ladra who alternates with Kevin Posadas as Emilio Aguinaldo, Monique Azerreda and Adelle Ibarrientos-Lim as Hilaria Aguinaldo, with Patrick Adrian Libao as Emilio Jacinto.

"Bonifacio: Isang Sarswela" is said to be PSF's most intense production to date. According to Tañada, the musical play's main objective is to inspire the audience to live a life of sacrifice. After mounting "JOE: A Filipino Rock'sical", he chose to have Bonifacio as the subject of his next stage play because he has always believed in courage and gallantry as important requisites for heroism.

"It is Bonifacio's extreme love for country that made him sacrifice his life. Such love is the noblest kind of love; it is not personal, but selfless and munificent," Tañada explained, adding that the play may not necessarily encourage people to sacrifice their lives for the country but it would at least inspire them to make other people's lives better. He noted some good examples of modern Bonifacio deeds in helping the forgotten sectors of society, educating and inspiring the youth by means of arts, and in visiting prisoners as well as the sick and the aged.

The regular run of "Bonifacio: Isang Sarswela" will be on July 20, 21 and 27 (8:00 a.m., 11:00 a.m. and 2:00 p.m. at Cinema 1, SM Centerpoint, Manila) and on July 28 (8:00 a.m., 11:00 a.m. and 2:00 p.m. at Tanghalang Pasigueño, Pasig City). For further information, contact Jude Cartalaba at 0927-391-3447.

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