Dulaang UP’s Ang Nawawalang Kapatid is a full-blown production directed by Mr. Dexter Santos. It is a story about an Indian epic entitled Mahabharata. The play was started by a man sitting in front, enveloping a snake around his body. That for me, depicted that this show will be intense and surely has a lot of surprises for its audience. The stage layout is like the Bonifacio play we watched last year. It has different levels; an up-and-down and they optimize the sides which brings the stage in a much bigger perspective. “They did not put much effort on their costumes; the princesses and princes’ clothing did not look like they belong to a royal family, choice of palette colors were pale and it doesn’t have that touch of an Indian community. Also, their make-ups are not heavy (and look like normal). I think they use that to emphasize more on the acting and props. The props used were creative and added beauty to the play, it clearly shows that enough time were put to make those; starting from the stage design and background, the barriers used while they’re having the war, the lanterns, everything was created artistically. It is kind of hilarious, but also resourceful how the princesses give birth to their child. Also, the rain effect was superb and really surprised everyone. The sound effects were amazing. You can feel the intensity by the loudness of their shouts, their heavy stomping, and how the props are also used to make sounds. I like the idea that they used less “artificial” sounds which made it more realistic, and you really feel the passion that the dancers and actors are giving. Though, there are some technical difficulties like how some of the princes’ voice and dialogues are not clearly stated especially when they were singing, also one almost forgot his own dialogue and the lights are late especially when emphasizing the princes. The show, in general, is spectacular. There were no lag moments, it has a continuous flow which brings the audience at the edge of their seats, and keeps us wanting to know what will happen next. The song and dance numbers were good. The dance number for Shakalaka is intense and forceful. After the play, I can hear myself singing Lukso ng Dugo which is very emotional and is the main song number in the play. All the actors are great, but I admire more the dancers. They have this passion that just overflows the stage. Though, the Lord of Blood and death’s voice quite weird and her singing voice do not fit much. At the end, the thing that I have a high regard for most is their bravery. How the actors showed their full body, the dancers almost nude in their undergarments, the braveness to show to everyone what theatre is all about. And they clearly showed passion, power and courage on their play, on each and every scene. Ang Nawawalang Kapatid is surely an epic play. Hands down to everyone!

Dulaang UP should have more shows like this, which is not only entertaining for the eyes but also a play that will touch your life! We should always support our co-Iskolars ng Bayan and appreciate their art!

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