UPPT to Stage Nick Joaquin’s ‘Fathers and Sons’


The daughter-in-law, Sofia, pacifies the ‘Caritela King’ with his favorite brand of gin. Issa Litton alternates with Adrianna Agcaolli as Sofia. Leo Rialp alternates with Menggie Cobarrubias as Zacarias Monzon in Nick Joaquin’s Fathers and Sons / Mga Ama, Mga Anak.

UP Playwrights’ Theatre opens its 26th Theatre Season dubbed as HONORING DEFIANCE with a tribute to National Artist for Literature Nick Joaquin. This birth centennial commemoration features one of his greatest plays, FATHERS AND SONS and its Filipino translation MGA AMA, MGA ANAK by National Artist for Literature Virgilio S. Almario and multi-awarded writer Jose F. Lacaba.

The daughter-in-law, Sofia, pacifies the ‘Caritela King’ with his favorite brand of gin. Issa Litton alternates with Adrianna Agcaolli as Sofia. Leo Rialp alternates with Menggie Cobarrubias as Zacarias Monzon in Nick Joaquin’s Fathers and Sons / Mga Ama, Mga Anak.

Celebrated for his signature style in the use of language and body of work that explores a wide variety of themes, Joaquin has influenced generations of writers, scholars, and theater artists. In fact, Dulaang UP has staged a number of Joaquin classics over the past 40 years: Beatas (translation by Bonifacio Ilagan, direction by Behn Cervantes); Larawan (translation by Alfred Yuson and Franklin Osorio, direction by Behn Cervantes); A Portrait of an Artist as Filipino | Larawan (translation by Bienvenido Lumbera, direction by Anton Juan, Jr.); and Tatarin | The Summer Solstice (direction by Anton Juan, Jr.).

Fathers and Sons, first staged in 1977 (Philippine Educational Theater Association) and then in 1995 and 2014 (CCP Tanghalang Pilipino), will have its premiere at the Wilfrido Ma. Guerrero Theater under the direction of DUP and UPPT Founding Artistic Director Tony Mabesa.

Set in the mid 70’s, this three-act play revolves around a day in the life of Zacarias Monzon, a man once known as the Caritela King. During the last few days of his life, he attempts to regain his reputation while reminiscing his past wealth, power, and success. The play dares to reveal the cycle of atrocities that linger in a patriarchal household as it resonates themes of identity, resistance, and acceptance.

Veteran actors Leo Rialp and Menggie Cobarrubias alternate as the Caritela King, Zacarias Monzon. Other members of the cast include: Rody Vera, George de Jesus and Greg de Leon (as Celo, Zacarias’ son); Stella Canete-Mendoza, Banaue Miclat-Janssen (as Nena, the spinster daughter of Zacarias), Adriana Agcaoili, Issa Litton (as Sofia, Celo’s socialite wife), Belen Calingacion, Olive Nieto (as Mrs. Paulo, Caritela King fanatic), Carlo Tarobal, Tracy Quila, Mark Dalacat (as Chitong, Celo’s son), Candy Pangilinan, Paula Benitez, Sarina Sasaki, Chloe Tandez (as Bessie, a go-go dancer), Vincent Macapobre, and Ian Ramirez (as laborers).

The two legitimate children of the Caritela King, Celo and Nena, are left with the obligation of taking care of their aging father. Rody Vera takes on the Guerrero stage as Celo Monzon together with veteran actress Stella Cañete-Mendoza who plays the role of Nena.

Joining Mabesa in the Artistic Team are Ohm David (set), Eric Pineda (costumes), Meliton Roxas Jr. (lights), Jethro Joaquin (sounds), and Charmaine Aranton and Nour Hooshmand (dramaturgy).

Chitong, the Caritela King’s grandson, takes Bessie’s side as Mrs. Paulo expresses her disgust towards the go-go dancer who now acts as the Caritela Kings wife. Candy Pangilinan plays the role of Bessie alternating with Sarina Sasaki, Paula Benitez and Chloe Rialp. Olive Nieto alternates with Belen Calignacion in the role of Mrs. Paulo. Carlo Tarobal alternates with Mark Dalacat and Tracy Quila in the role of Chitong.

Fathers and Sons | Mga Ama, Mga Anak runs from September 6 to 24 at the Wilfrido Ma. Guerrero Theater, 2nd Floor Palma Hall, UP Diliman, Quezon City. For ticket, show-buying, and sponsorship inquiries, you may contact Camille Guevara (0917 823 9531) or the Dulaang UP Office (Tel. No.: 926-1349 / 981-8500 local 2449 / dulaangupmarketing@gmail.com).

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