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Ballet Philippines’ Peter Pan to Soar Again

Ballet Philippines’ Peter Pan to Soar Again

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By R. Mejia
Photos from Ballet Philippines
Return to the magical world of Neverland with Peter Pan, the Darling children: Wendy, John, and Michael, Captain Hook, Smee, Tinkerbell, Tiger Lily, the Lost Boys, and many more in Ballet Philippines’ (BP) re-staging of J.M. Barrie’s classic tale of the boy who would not grow up!

Peter Pan

Captain Hook challenges Peter Pan – Photo by Victor Ursabia

Choreographed by Edna Vida Froilan and under the artistic direction of Paul Alexander Morales, BP’s Peter Pan will fly again from December 4 to 13, 2015 at the Cultural Center of the Philippines’ Tanghalang Nicanor Abelardo starring Principal Dancer Jean Marc Cordero, Principal Soloist Cyril Aran Fallar, and Soloist Victor Maguad alternating in the title role as Peter Pan while Soloist Rita Angela Winder, Junior Soloist Monica Amanda Gana, and Junior Soloist Jemima Reyes alternates as Wendy Darling.

Edna Vida Froilan

Peter Pan’s choreographer, Edna Vida Froilan – Photo by Jojo Mamangun

(Click here for more information about this production)

“The Peter Pan story is still read by children and there are lots of available reincarnations in different media so it’s still familiar to kids and adults alike. Everyone can relate to it,” says Froilan. “[The production] is just two hours of a world that is peaceful and simple and fun where you can just feel like a kid again!”

Inspired by the 1954 Broadway Production, the choreography in Edna Vida Froilan’s Peter Pan is highly influenced by the musical theatre genre but with additional elements and twists.

Peter Pan

Peter Pan and his shadow – Photo by Victor Ursabia

“I based my sequence on the Walt Disney cartoon and also put in some music that didn’t really belong to the original Broadway version because I thought that I needed that music like a syncopated clock for the crocodile’s tap dancing scene,” Froilan told Theater Fans Manila (TFM). “I thought that syncopated clock would fit that scene because in the Disney version, the crocodile swallowed a clock so Captain Hook always knows he’s near because of the clock. And I’m going to get a tap dancer to boot for the tick, tock.”

(READ: TEAM TFM Goes Behind the Scenes at Ballet Philippines’ Peter Pan)

International company Fly By Foy who specializes in lifting through harnesses and rigs will be in charge of the pixie dust that will make BP dancers soar through the air.

Peter Pan

Cyril Aran Fallar reprises his role as Peter Pan

“Foy is a company built around Peter Pan,” says artistic director Paul Alexander Morales. “They put their first production in Broadway and they’ve been a flying company ever since. They utilize their own harness with their own system. Every time we import them, they bring the equipment as well as the flying director.”

Froilan recalls that in previous stagings the dancers always have a good time when they’re “flying” in the air and the audiences find it “riveting and awesome.”

Peter Pan

Jean Marc Cordero in flight as Peter Pan – Photo by Victor Ursabia

“Once they’re on the air, the audience gasps! It’s really very strange to see dancers actually flying because dancers always pretend to be ethereal anyway,” Froilan told TFM. “Suddenly there’s this beautiful figure soaring in the air. I think that they, the dancers, will soar in the  air better than actors.”   As a preparation for the flying stunts, Soloist Victor Maguad who alternates as Peter Pan is keeping his weight in check.

Peter Pan

Victor Maguad takes on the role of Peter Pan

“Last, last week we sent information about our height, weight, body shape, and size [to Fly By Foy] which is necessary for the flying,” Maguad told TFM. “So we just have to maintain that.”

This year marks the 32nd anniversary and sixth staging of Froilan’s Peter Pan which premiered in December 1983. Notable dancers who have played Peter Pan in the past include Edward Malagkit, Ramon Victoria, Conrad Dy-Liaco, Elmer Domdom, Dwight Rodrigazo, Ardee Dionisio, Clark Rambuyon, Philip Rocamora, and two females: Grethel Domingo and Christine Crame.

For inquiries visit www.ballet.ph, e-mail info@ballet.ph, or call Ballet Philippines at 551-1003. For tickets and reservations, call the CCP Box Office at 832-3704.

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