“Rama, Hari,” an ancient Sanskrit epic about courage and love, provides a fitting end to Ballet Philippines’ 50th season—the last show under the helm of current artistic director, National Artist for Dance Alice Reyes.
“This rock opera interpretation translates ‘Rama, Hari’ into a very human and contemporary terms,” Reyes said in a statement.
One of the most celebrated ballet musicals of the company, “Rama, Hari” is based on the Indian epic “Ramayana.” It follows the story of Prince Rama on his quest to rescue his wife Princess Sita from Ravana. With the help of an army of monkeys, Rama sets out to save his beloved and reclaim the throne that rightfully belongs to him.
But more than a tale of courage and enduring love, “Rama, Hari” is a creative collaboration of five National Artists: choreography and stage direction by National Artist for Dance Alice Reyes, libretto by National Artist for Literature Bienvenido Lumbera, music by National Artist for Music Ryan Cayabyab, set and costume by the late Salvador Bernal (National Artist for Theater Design) and english translation by the late Rolando Tinio (National Artist for Theater and Literature).
It was first performed during BP’s 10th season in February 1980, and again in November of the same year for its 11th season.
Its 1980 staging starred Basil Valdez, Leo Valdez, and then unknown singer Kuh Ledesma—who then got her break from the well-received performance.
“Rama, Hari” was then produced for the third time in 1983 for its 30th season, and most recently in 2012 for its 43rd season.
The fifth staging of “Rama, Hari,” will run from March 20 to 29.
Performing on the Main Theater stage of the Cultural Center of the Philippines are lead singers David Ezra, Gian Magdangal, Aicelle Santos, and Nar Nabico, together with the ABS-CBN Philharmonic Orchestra.
Tickets are available at TicketWorld (8891-9999), CCP Box Office (8832-3704), and Ballet Philippines Box Office (8551-1003). Go to www.ballet.ph for more information.