Spotlight Artists Centre has just turned dirt into gold!The production company owned by actors Robert Seña and Isay Alvarez-Seña scored a major theatrical triumph with the highly successful run of Dirty Old Musical (D.O.M.) in September at the Music Museum.
Featuring a talented ensemble that included John Arcilla, Nonie Buencamino, Michael Williams, Ricky Davao, and Seña. Spotlight Artists’ first original Filipino musical earned rave reviews and brisk ticket sales, and struck a resonant chord among OPM fans that gamely sang and danced along with their nostalgic favorites.
D.O.M. tackles the trials, travails and misadventures of the five members of an all-male ‘80s singing group in their twilight years, reunited by a noble cause and given another shot at redeeming their lost loves and long-held passions.
The struggle to reinvent proves to be tougher than they initially imagined as they grapple with the aches and pains of growing old.
For Isay, Robert and the cast, their initial fears and worries about the musical’s “birth pains’’ were all drowned out by the deafening applause and the uproarious laughter they heard on opening night.
“We were so excited and I was particularly proud of Myke Solomon (musical director) and Robert, who were really the ones who planned the musical. To hear and see the pasted smiles on their faces were a clear affirmation of our work,” Isay exclaims.
Partly because of the limited (eight days) first run, Isay and company feel compelled to heed the clamor of frustrated stage fans who were not able to see the show.
“The January rerun is still quite limited due to the complicated schedules of the cast, hence the seven shows, but we expect to do more as we find more free time among everyone,” she adds.
For the January show, equally acclaimed Carlo Orosa takes over Michael Williams, with the same technical team headed by librettist Rody Vera, director Dexter Martinez and Myke Salomon as musical director.
With their musical backdrop comprised of memorable OPM hits, Robert clearly remembers some of their well-applauded highlights.
“The arrangements came as a surprise to many. Myke was able to deliver a fresh take on those OPM hits. Particularly, “Saludo” and “Mag-Exercise Tayo Tuwing Umaga” were riots, but the heart- renching act 1 finale was a favorite, too (“Kastilyong Buhangin” and “Nakapagtataka”) rendered by John, Noni, Ima and Kitkat,” he says.
Apart from its solid musical foundation, perhaps part of D.O.M.’s success is its equally “hugot-inducing” themes that revolve around friendship, bromance, and the endearing Pinoy trait of relying on humor to trump adversity.
And because of the strong buzz, Isay also hints at the possibility of extended runs and overseas performances.
She shares, “There are invitations to do a U.S. tour in major cities, but I’m praying to do one here with a big band before the end of 2017.”
Buoyed by D.O.M.’s success, Robert and Isay are even more optimistic about their follow-up project.
Isay enthuses, “Yes, we have this show in mind that we’ve been wanting to see staged. Hopefully in two years’ time. It’s an original production so it will take more time to produce it.”
Rounding up the stellar cast are powerhouse theater performers Ima Castro, Kitkat and Fred Lo, with an ensemble comprised of Shalee Vicencio, Gabriela Pangilinan, and Irra Cenina.
Dirty Old Musical’s is ongoing at Music Museum with shows today and tomorrow to 21 and Jan. 26 to 28, 8 p.m., with a 3 p.m. matinee on Jan. 28.
For tickets call TicketWorld at 891-9999 or Spotlight Artists Centre at 0919-911-4444.
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