Perhaps the most inspiring experience that came out of my Montreal trip was finally getting to see People Power – a very powerful and moving play about the non-violent revolution in the Philippines back in 1986 that lead to the toppling of former president Marcos' nearly 20 year corrupt dictatorship. It was written from diverse points of view, all seamlessly represented by the cast. All of it honouring the unsung heroes of the revolution: such as the people of the working class and the activists. Not only was my sister, Christine part of the brilliant cast, she is also part of the CBT Collective that wrote this smart, rich, multi-dimensional, modern, sensitive (and sometimes humourous!) piece of theatre. Not only is my sister active in her theatre work, she's also a talented freelance art director and designer like me! I loved seeing this play and was incredibly inspired by the role my sister played in it's creation.
Toronto-based, Carlos Bulosan Theatre is also lead by another good friend of mine, Nadine Villasin, who is the theatre's artistic director. My other, multi-talented sister Caroline also designed the costumes and my brother-in-law was responsible for the sound design. I am pretty amazed and humbled to be surrounded with such talent and creativity here in Canada.
People Power has received numerous accolades. Not the least of which are the several Dora nominations for many cast and crew members as well as a Dora Award* winning actor, Nico Lorenzo Garcia for his very moving portrayal of an average Filipino taxi driver in People Power.
*The Dora is the Canadian equivalent of the Tony Award)
If you happen to be in the Montreal area between now and October 2nd, go see People Power. There are five shows left before it closes. You will be as inspired and moved as I was.
Photos by Reese Baguio