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Artists gather, recall Butuan’s epic musical

By Bryan Edulzura

Musician and music director Titing Trinquite brought his guitar and that sailed everyone back to the grandeur of “Lawig Balanghai” days in the cast and partners reunion-gathering, December 9.

Acknowledged artists not only in Butuan but beyond who were cast members before like movement artists Sai Collado, Nice Montante and Mae Oclarit came to honor and recall the most significant and biggest musical Butuan has ever produced.

“LB” was staged in the mid 80’s, late 90’s and early 2000’s and performed in Manila and the rest of the country courtesy of the Cultural Center of the Philippines (CCP).

It’s success formed a formidable record in Butuan’s contemporary creative history. Also named one of Mindanao’s landmark production by Mindanao’s artists and cultural workers in Mindanao’s Theater Festival in the early 90’s.

The reunion was organized by creative writer RJ Sarabosing and held at Jucha Vegetarian Restaurant where songs, dances and camaraderie flowed.

No less than the playwright of the musical, Fe Remotigue came all the way from Manila as well as Lando Arban, then executive producer of Edcads, a cultural nongovernment organization (NGO) that produced the first and second mountings.

Historian Greg Hontiveros and wife Edna, Gender and Development (GAD) advocate, Sally Joy R. Bungabung, a development worker, partners and supporters attended with the others as well. Hontiveros became the official photographer that lovely night.

The evening did not only gather the previous cast but also artists-colleagues like painter Bada Torralba, MM Cadosales and others.

In the end plans are underway to make “LB” a sustainable endeavor to the next generation. As they say in theater, “break a leg guys!”

Photos Greg Hontiveros

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