Monday, February 8, 2010

Romeo & Bernadette (Repertory Philippines)


True to what the souvenir program says, this musical is zany and the acting all campy. The musical numbers are lively, albeit not so memorable, but well sung by the whole cast. When there is an instance when the play becomes a bit boring, the characters with their colorful personalities step in to save the show.

Cris Villonco really looks like her grandmother Armida when she bares her upper front teeth while singing. It is evident that she has prepared well for the role. One can draw a clear line between her Juliet and Bernadette roles.

PJ Valerio plays dumb quite well. Okay maybe not dumb, but the comedy of errors works well for him. The audience obviously likes it. Red Concepcion and Liesl Batucan provide strong performances in their supporting roles while the other extras in the cast also have their own moments. Kudos specifically goes to Rem Zamora, who has all the fun playing different roles, most of which are in drag.

Repertory Philippines has always been consistent with their actors' accents. Here the three girls all sound like Fran Drescher, which is a bit amusing, actually. As for the story it is not that engaging maybe because it is already cliché. Who does not know the story of Romeo and Juliet? Of course there is a twist but we all know where the ending is headed to, although it deviates from the tragic premise of the original.

The set is all colorful and seems to have been intentionally done to seem like colored from crayons. It is a bit disturbing though, but in effect prepares the set to complement the actors' camp acting.

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