[The photos above show some of the members of the cast of the ANG LARAWAN movie.  The movie is actually set in pre-war Intramuros (also known as the WALLED CITY within MANILA), and it tells of the story of Candida and Paula Marasigan, unwed daughters of a high-profile painter Don Lorenzo Marasigan. The plot of the story revolved around the struggle of the Marasigan sisters to sell — or keep — their father’s last work of art ( a seeming self-portrait, as Don Lorenzo used himself as model for both Aeneas and Anchises in a painting with the burning City of Troy as backdrop). The painting is being chased by socialites, art critics, and politicians after a Frenchman wrote a review about the painting heaping lauds and praises to it and unto the painter himself.] {* “TARA NA” is a Tagalog expression which means: LET’S GO.} 

Itong MMFF1 ng nagdaang PASKO,

Aba’y sobra akong tunay na nagka-GUSTO;

Sa pelikulang pamagat ay “ANG LARAWAN”2,

Para bagang FOREIGN FILM na  pam-PALIGSAHAN3!



Tunay na ako’y bumilib sa DIRECTOR,

Si LOY ARCENAS4 na inayudahan ni DENNIS5 na ASST. DIRECTOR;


Talagang napakaganda ang dating at palakpak ang LAHAT!



Ang aking payo sa mga KIDS pati na sa DI-BAGETS6a

Panoorin ang PELIKULANG ito, at you’ll never FORGET;

Magandang EXPERIENCE, as it gives a view of pre-war FAMILY LIFE—

Daming eksenang  PRECISE, parang HOLLYWOOD period movie ang TYPE!



TARA NA, TARA NA kayong lahat mga AMIGO…

Panoorin ang OBRA MAESTRA, na ang MOTIF ay ANTIGO—

Hindi kayo mag-sisisi’t talagang ang galing ng DISKARTE,

Magagandang aria at musika; mistulang RUMEPEKE7!



Daming mga star singer na mga ARTISTA,

Si JOANNA7a ng TEATRO at artes na paksa ng sinaunang TERTULIA;


Para naman madinig ang ibat-ibang mga KANTAHAN8!



Yong solo ni Don PERICO na pinapelan ni AREVALO9

Sa tingin ko’y syang nagdala ng mensaheng TOTOO;

Parang pinahiwatig na ang mga PINOY na mga ARTISTS; kay hirap ISPELINGIN…

Iiwanan ang sining at sa POLITICS10 PAPALING!


[The role of DON PERICO was excellently portrayed by Filipino actor ROBERT AREVALO (seen in this photo seated at center). DON PERICO was a former respected poet who turned into a politician.   When CANDIDA, as portrayed by JOANNA AMPIL confronted DON PERICO as to why he (i.e. DON PERICO) abandoned POETRY for POLITICS, DON PERICO belted this wonderful line in his aria: “HINDI SIMPLE ANG BUHAY NA TULAD NG SINING…MAY PUWERSANG HUMUHUBOG SA ATING LANDASIN…”.]


TARA NA, TARA NA — para kayo’y ma-ALIW—

Ang awit ni CELESTE11 halos ay naka-BABALIW11a;

Magaganda rin ang mga awitin ni JOANNA12,

Lalo akong namangha sa papel nyang si CANDIDA!



Dapat marinig ninyo ang LIBRETTO ni TINIO13,

Na ginamit ng CAST nang tapat, walang BINAGO…

Pinagpilitan ni CELESTE14 ang faithful RELIANCE,

Word for word, wika nga… kay TINIO lahat sila’y naging AFFIANCED15!



Ang inawit ni PAULA16 at ni CANDIDA bilang DUETO,

 Nakakaantig ng puso at damdaming TOTOO;

Binigyan pugay nila ang KAGANDAHAN at KATOTOHAN,

Mga ideal na mistulang nawaglit, nawala sa ating LIPUNAN!



TARA NA, TARA NA at halos ay patapos NA16a

Sa totoo ako’y manonood nang muli PA!

The FILM has made me a proud FILIPINO17,

I do hope that you’ll ALL feel the same way TOO!



[Legend: 1 – MMFF is the acronym for the Metro-Manila Film Festival; which is an annual film festival held in Metro-Manila, in the Philippines. The festival, which runs from December 25 (Christmas) through New Year’s Day and into first weekend of January in the following year, focuses on Filipino films.

2 – ANG LARAWAN is an internationally released movie entitled in English as The Portrait. It is a 2017 Philippine musical film directed by Loy Arcenas and is based on the 1997 stage play, Ang Larawan the Musical which in turn was based on A Portrait of the Artist as Filipino by National Artist Nick Joaquin. The film was set in 1941 just before World War II in a mansion in Manila. Ang Larawan had its premiere in Japan on October 30, 2017, as part of the 30th Tokyo International Film Festival. It was commercially released in the Philippines on December 25, 2017 as an entry to the 43rd Metro Manila Film Festival, where it won five of its twelve categories, including Best Picture, Best Musical Score, Best Production Design, and the Gatpuno Antonio J. Villegas Cultural Award. Critical response for the film was very positive.

3 – PAM-PALIGSAHAN actually means competition and the use of the word intimates the OSCAR’s Awards of America.

4 – LOY ARCENAS is a sexagenarian FILM Director who has had lots of  theatrical exposure in the U.S.A. In 1992, he was the scenic designer for Bertolt Brecht’s play, “The Good Person of Setzuan,” at the Goodman Theatre in Chicago, Illinois. The crew also included Frank Galati (director), Claudia Schmidt (original incidental music), and James F. Ingalls (lighting designer). Cast included Cherry Jones. In 1994, he was the scenic designer for Tennessee Williams’ play, “The Night of the Iguana,” also at the Goodman Theatre in Chicago, Illinois with Cherry Jones and Will Petersen too in the cast. It would appear that as early as in 1984, Loy Arcenas has been in the “set design” business already as he, in the  1984-1985 season,  was the set designer for Craig Lucas’s play, “Blue Window,” at the Long Wharf Theatre (Stage II) in New Haven, Connecticut where Norman Rene was director. Loy Arcenas bagged the BEST DIRECTOR award in the 2017 MMFF with his entry —ANG LARAWAN.

5  – DENNIS MARASIGAN is the Assistant Director of the FILM entitled ANG LARAWAN.   Dennis is an actor, writer, director and producer who started in theater and then worked in Philippine cinema with directors Joey Gosiengfiao, Laurice Guillen, Efren Piñon, Pio de Castro III, Tikoy Aguiluz, and Ishmael Bernal. He has also worked for television and was Carlos Palanca Memorial Award in Full-Length play in Filipino in 1998 and the Carlos Palanca Memorial Award in Screenplay in 2008.

6 – CAYABYAB is RYAN CAYABYAB,  who was born Raymundo Cipriano Pujante Cayabyab on May 4, 1954 in Manila, Philippines but is known simply as Mr. C. He is a Filipino musician, composer and conductor; he was Executive and Artistic Director for several years of the defunct San Miguel Foundation for the Performing Arts.

6a –  “BAGETS” is a Tagalog slang which means the juvenile or the young ones. Thus, the term “DI-BAGETS” with the prefix “DI” which is a contraction of the Tagalog term “HINDI” which means “NO”, refers to the OLDIES.

7 – RUMEPEKE is a Tagalog slang which is used in this BLOG to mean, to belt or blare out, as in a song.

7a –  JOANNA is JOANNA AMPIL was born on June 1, 1975 in Manila. Joanna is an awarded musical theatre and film actress in the Philippines. Joanna has performed in several West End musicals, including Miss Saigon, Jesus Christ Superstar and Avenue Q, and she played the role of Fantine in Les Misérables in London until 21 June 2008. She was also invited by Sir Cameron Mackintosh to perform the role of Kim in the Australian premiere in Sydney of Miss Saigon, and in 2011 she performed the main role as Thanh in the showcase performance of the new musical The Real Love. Her breakthrough role as Candida in the 2017 film adaptation of Ang Larawan the Musical (in itself adopted from A Portrait of the Artist as Filipino) won her the Best Actress Award at the 43rd Metro Manila Film Festival.

8 –   KANTAHAN is Tagalog word for SINGING.

9 – AREVALO is ROBERT AREVALO was born as Robert Ylagan. He is an actor and director, known for Hubad na Bayani (1977), Pangako ng Kahapon (1994) and Sino’ng Pipigil sa Pagpatak ng Ulan? (1979). He is married to Barbara Perez. He is the son of Filipino film actor/composer/musician Tito Arevalo; his uncle Angel Esmeralda is the father of the late Jay Ilagan and his uncle Gerardo de Leon is a national artist and an award winning movie director. He attended some of the best schools in Manila such as the Legarda Elementary School, San Beda College and Ateneo de Manila where he took Business Administration.

10 – POLITICS is a reference to the character of Don Perico who was formerly a POET who eventually turned into a politician as a Senator.

11 – CELESTE is CELESTE LEGASPI, who is a Filipino singer and actress. Her singles and albums reached gold or platinum status during the 1960s, 1970s and 1980s. She is the daughter of National Artist for Visual Arts Cesar Legaspi. She spearheaded the Organisasyon ng Pilipinong Mang-aawit (OPM), a group which aimed to promote and propagate Original Pilipino music. She is married to Nonoy Gallardo, one of the premier OPM composers.

11a – NAKAKABALIW – is a Tagalog term which means going crazy; but is being used in this BLOG to mean the positive connotation thereof as – “extremely enthusiastic”.

12 – JOANNA is JOANNA AMPIL as indicated in No. 7a.

13 – TINIO is ROLANDO TINIO who is a Philippine National Artist for Theater and Literature. He was born in Gagalangin, Tondo, Manila on March 5, 1937. As a child, Tinio was fond of organizing and directing his playmates for costumed celebrations. He was an active participant in the Filipino movie industry and enjoyed working with Philippine celebrities who he himself had admired in his childhood. Tinio himself became a film actor and scriptwriter. He is often described as a religious, well-behaved and gifted person. Tinio graduated with honors (a “magna cum laude” achiever) with a degree in Philosophy from the Royal and Pontifical University of Santo Tomas at age 18 in 1955 and an M.F.A. degree in Creative Writing:Poetry from the State University of Iowa.

14 – CELESTE is Celeste Legaspi as indicated in No. 11.

15 – AFFIANCED is used here to mean as having made a vow.

16 – The character PAULA was also excellently portrayed by RACHEL ALEJANDRO, the daughter of balladeer HAJJI ALEJANDRO, also known as POP STAR of the 70s and 80s. PAULA and CANDIDA sung a song entitled KAY SARAP NG BUHAY NOONG ARAW, which exalted the virtues of BEAUTY and TRUTH, which in the song have been acknowledged as seemingly gone and already lost already in our present typical Filipino social life.

16a – The showing of FILM entries who competed in the MMFF will end on January 7, 2018 and that will be FOUR (4) more days to go.

17 –  The pride in me as a Filipino springs from a realization. A realization that an outstanding movie such as the “ANG LARAWAN”  can actually be produced by Filipinos and that we have now in our midst talented personalities who can do it and make it happen.]








































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