Monday, January 12, 2015

Tale As Old As Time: Beauty and The Beast in Manila

Words by Kix Suarez
Photos by Kris Rocha

No one with a semblance of heart wouldn’t know the joy that Disney brings. From Mickey to its princesses, your childhood wouldn’t have been complete without knowing at least one song from a Disney cartoon or movie. Both young and old seem to have their faces light up when Disney is mentioned in a conversation and that’s just what happened when Ovation Productions announced that they were tapped by Disney Theatrical Productions, NETworks and Broadway Entertainment Group as its partner in mounting the original Broadway spectacular in Manila as part of its 10-country first-ever international tour in celebration of its 20th anniversary on the stage.

The tour started in Istanbul (Turkey) last October, and made its way to Abu Dhabi (United Arab Emirates), Thessalonik (Greece), Trieste (Italy) and Milan (Italy) and now in Manila (Philippines), when the final show on January 25 is through, it will head to Bangkok (Thailand), Singapore, Jakarta (Indonesia), Kazakhstan and, finally, Macau, marking the first time it will be seen in these areas.

The story has been told a million times over and yet to this day, it captivates in a way that only Disney can. For those who may have been living under a rock or again, with no heart, the story goes, in gist, as follows:

Prince Adam was cursed and turned into to a hideous beast by an Enchantress who saw no love in his arrogant heart for others. The one way he could break the spell was to learn to love another and earn her love in return before the last petal from his enchanted rose fell, which would bloom until his twenty-first birthday. It was feat for Prince Adam since people feared him and his appearance, making him a recluse and shunning away people to enter in to his kingdom.

It was a few years later that an unfortunate accident happened. Maurice, an inventor from a nearby village, loses his way in the woods and seeks shelter in the Beast's castle. Upon catching Maurice in his property, he imprisons him for trespassing.

Luckily for Maurice, his kind and beautiful daughter Belle, a bookworm who dreams of life outside her provincial village, finds him trapped in the castle and offers her place in his stead. The Beast accepts with a promise she'll remain in the castle forever. In the beginning they mutually despised each other. Belle saw him as nothing more than a monster while he saw her as difficult and stubborn. It was in time that they both discovered the good in each other’s hearts and were able to appreciate and understand each other. With that, they fall in love ultimately breaking the spell that the Enchantress casted on Prince Adam.

The show is a must-see. After all, there is not much else to say than Disney. DISNEY!!! It’s nice to know that Manila’s productions are not just all about concerts. Manila Concert Sceners are now embracing different kinds of forms of live entertainment. Hopefully, this won’t be the last!

BEAUTY AND THE BEAST THE ORIGINAL BROADWAY MUSICAL SPECTACULAR will run until January 25, 2015 at CCP Main Theater. Presented by Ovation Productions.


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