RAMA, HARI, the highly-acclaimed Filipino rock opera ballet, returns to the stage for a rerun this September. The production holds the prestige of being the only collaboration that features the masterful works of five National Artists, Alice Reyes for Direction and Choreography, Ryan Cayabyab for Music, Salvador Bernal for Production Design, and Bienvenido Lumbera for the lyrics and libretto with English Translations by Rolando Tinio. Presented by the National Commission for Culture and the Arts, in partnership with the Metropolitan Theater, the Cultural Center of the Philippines, and with the generous support of Birch Tree Adult Boost, the production features artists from CCP’s Professional Artist Support Program and Alice Reyes Dance Philippines with performances running at the Metropolitan Theater on September 15-16, and at the Samsung Performing Arts Theater, September 22-23, 2023.
Inspired by the ancient Sanskrit epic, Ramayana, the ballet tells of the adventures of Rama, prince and incarnation of the god Vishnu, who comes down to earth to save the world from Ravana, the most powerful of demons and in time falls in love with Sita, daughter of the king of Mithila, Janaka, and eventually marries her. The evil Ravana attempts to tear the two apart only to find himself defeated and his demonic plans thwarted.
RAMA, HARI was last re-staged in 2012 and won 14 Philstage Gawad Buhay Awards. It was intended to be re-staged once more in 2020 but was canceled due to the pandemic lockdown. This year, the long-awaited re-staging of RAMA, HARI will open in September with excited expectations.
This year, the creative team searched for new talents to join the cast and take on some of the production’s iconic singing roles.
The cast includes musical theater star, Arman Ferrer in the lead role of Rama with Vien King alternating. They will perform alongside dancers Ronelson Yadao and Ejay Arisola.
Karylle Tatlonghari, Shiela Valderrama-Martinez, and fresh-face talent Nica Tupas alternate in the role of Rama’s beloved wife, Sita, with dance counterparts, Monica Gana, and Katrene San Miguel.
Rak of Aegis Star, Poppert Bernadas, takes on the role of the demon King Ravana, alternating with Los Angeles-based musical theater actor Mathew San Jose making his Manila debut, and Jonel Mojica. Dancing the role are Richardson Yadao and Tim Cabrera.
Theater icon Audie Gemora takes on the role of King Dasaratha. Also joining the cast are Katrine Sunga and Maron Rozelle Mabana in the dual role of King Dasaratha’s Third Wife, Kaikeyi, and the Golden Doe, while Miah Canton, and Raflesia Bravo take on the dual role of Kaikeyi’s evil adviser, Kooni, and Ravana’s demon sister Soorpanakha.
Paw Castillo and Jon Abella do double duty as Monkey Army General, Hanuman, and Rama’s brother Lakshmana.
September 15, 2023 | Friday | 7:30 PM | Metropolitan Theater*
September 16, 2023 | Saturday | 2:00 PM | Metropolitan Theater
September 16, 2023 | Saturday | 7:30 PM | Metropolitan Theater*
September 22, 2023 | Friday | 7:30 PM | Samsung Performing Arts Theater*
September 23, 2023 | Saturday | 2:00 PM | Samsung Performing Arts Theater
September 23, 2023 | Saturday | 7:30 PM | Samsung Performing Arts Theater**
*With live music performed by The Orchestra of the Filipino Youth
**Evening Performance Sponsored by Samsung Electronics Philippines Corp.