Freeman Cebu Entertainment

‘Monsters the Musical’: A coming-of-age love story

Karla Rule - The Freeman

CEBU, Philippines —  It’s the season to be brave as Cebu puts courage and love center stage through the brand new production “Monsters the Musical” by MDF Productions.

The upcoming theatre experience boasts an all-Cebuano cast, crew and live band. Featuring the music of singer-songwriter and record producer Cattski Espina, “Monsters the Musical” is the coming-of-age love story of Bea and Elle, who discover themselves through each other as they encounter and battle their monsters together.

“I truly believe first of all in the story,” said executive producer Margo Frasco during a press conference at The Core by MDF at FLC Center.

A lover of the performing arts, Frasco said it wasn’t difficult to put together “Monsters the Musical,” which is the production company’s pilot project.

“Being part of that beautiful rainbow community, I’ve been in the same situation before,” said Frasco. “It’s never a walk in the park.”

Formed following a stiff audition process that began in June, the “Monster” actors – known as “The Brave Cast” – is a solid group of talented individuals who are allies of the LBTQ+ community as well as women’s rights advocates. Since July, the cast has been hard at work at rehearsals.

Alternating as Elle are Trixie Alturas and Shaun Pilapil, while “Pero Atik Ra” singer Jacky Chang alternates with Alyza Kamille Miole for the role of Bea.

Von Saw and Andrew Diamante will bring to life the character of Jake, while Marlon Tansengco and Les Paul Pineda portray Dex.

The people behind “Monsters the Musical” pride themselves in their bravery as they ask audiences if they are ready to dive into the essence of being truly brave. Offering a spectacle worthy of Cebuano pride, “Monsters,” to be presented November 16 and 17 at the SM Seaside City Cebu Centerstage, is what happens when you put heart and art together.

Espina, founder of independent record label 22 Tango Records, still can’t believe that “Monsters the Musical” (titled after her song “Monsters”) is actually happening. Her vulnerability also comes off as bravery as she becomes the inspiration behind an enlightening and powerful message that no one should ever have to hide who they really are.

“I punch myself every now and then,” said Espina. “The scary part was that this spoke a lot of what I went through as a gay person and the struggles I had to go through that I didn’t tell you.”


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