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‘Ang Tatlong Kuwento ni Lola Basyang’ Ballet Returns this May

‘Ang Tatlong Kuwento ni Lola Basyang’ Ballet Returns this May

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Ballet Manila is set to restage Ang Tatlong Kuwento ni Lola Basyang as its second show of its 26th Performance Season.

Based on the retellings of Severino Reyes’ stories by Christine Bellen Ang, Ang Tatlong Kwento ni Lola Basyang features three stories that aim to have a mix of romance, adventure, and comedy– Ang Prinsipe ng mga Ibon, Ang Kapatid ng Tatlong Marya, and Ang Mahiwagang Biyulin.

“We chose three stories out of twelve Lola Basyang books. It was an interesting process because there were so many great tales that were worth sharing. But in the end, we felt that the themes we chose can truly resonate with an audience across many generations,” shared Lisa Macuja Elizalde, Artistic Director and Chief Executive Officer of Ballet Manila.

“As a publishing company that’s known for producing books about Philippine culture, we feel it is part of our duty to ensure that the magic of these stories is not lost among the younger generation. Ang Mga Kuwento Ni Lola Basyang is among the books that have mesmerized generations of Filipino children and we are confident they will love the ballet version,” shared Xandra Ramos Padilla, Anvil Publishing president.  ”We’re so thrilled that  these stories will once again be brought to life through compelling performances, thanks to our partnership with Ballet Manila.”

The role of Lola Basyang will be played by Mitch Valdes, who says, “We’re familiar with all the international classics but this one is a rare chance to see one of our beloved folklore come to life in classical ballet. It will be beautiful because the story is one of our own.”

The production begins with Ang Prinsipe ng mga Ibon, which tells the tale of a princess who wishes to marry her beloved bird against her father’s disapproval. In the end, the princess decides to turn into a beautiful bird to join her beloved bird who happens to be a prince in his kingdom. 


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Breathing life into the characters are Principal Dancers Jasmine Pia Dames/Shaira Comeros as Prinsesa Singsing, Romeo Peralta/Joshua Enciso as Prinsipe ng mga Ibon, and Mark Sumaylo as Hari. Choreographed by the late Osias Barroso Jr., Ballet Manila’s co-artistic director until his passing in December 2023, the production hopes his legacy will live on through the choreographies he has created. 

Barroso once said, “I want Ang Prinsipe ng mga Ibon to be very romantic. I want people to fall in love after watching it.” Complementing his vision is musical arranger Mon Faustino who arranged music for the production using compositions of our National Artists for Music.  

The production then moves on to focus on the dark ramifications of greed in Ang Kapatid ng Tatlong Marya, which tells the story of a couple who are folk healers, thanks to the leaves of a magical tree that their three daughters would pick every morning. Because of the couple’s greed, they were punished by the serpent living in the tree, taking their three daughters to marry them off to beastly animals. The couple soon had another child, this time a son, and before the father’s death, he requested his son to look for his three sisters. 


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Ang Kapatid ng Tatlong Marya is a collaborative partnership between Lisa Macuja Elizalde as choreographer, and Joey Ayala as composer.

“For Ang Kapatid ng Tatlong Marya, I wanted to merge the movements of the folk dances of Luzon, Visayas, and Mindanao to represent the three worlds to show the cultural diversity and color of our nation,” explained Macuja Elizalde. 

The production will also feature a combination of raw sounds from kawayan and metal, complemented by orchestral synthesizer sounds. For this story, Anselmo Dictado/Sean Pelegrin will perform the role of Pedro, while the Tatlong Marya will be played by Rissa May Camaclang (Maria Trining), Stephanie Santiago (Maria Loleng) and Jessa Balote/Jessica Pearl Dames (Maria Upeng).

National Artist for Music Ryan Cayabyab composed the lively and catchy music that will accompany the dancers in Ang Mahiwagang Biyulin. The last installment in the trilogy, it tells the story of a young man named Rodrigo who is rewarded with a magical violin for his kindness to an old woman. 


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The late Filipino ballet dancer Tony Fabella serves as choreographer for this production. Fabella believed that while the story is easy enough to understand, audiences will have a deeper appreciation of its message if told through ballet. Gerardo Francisco Jr. will be playing the role of Rodrigo and John Ralp Balago will be playing the role of Ahab. 

Ang Tatlong Kuwento ni Lola Basyang will run on May 11 at 8pm, and May 12 and 18 at 5pm at the Aliw Theater. Tickets are available through Ticketworld.






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