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661 views Dec 06, 2019
Young Theatre Music Composer, Jen Darlene Torres, Introduces a New Flavor of Filipino Musical

Young Theatre Music Composer, Jen Darlene Torres, Introduces a New Flavor of Filipino Musical

The music composer, lyricist, and originator of the reimagined "Biag ni Lam-Ang" did the Lam-Ang Musical back in 2017 for her thesis produced by UP Dulaang Laboratoryo and Project Mayheim. With little background in musical theories and methodologies but huge influence in underground and indie music - mostly of alternative rock and pop genre, Jen thought of merging these elements with the ethnic flavor of the play's theme.

Jen Darlene V. Torres is an artist from Alab at Sinag Pilipinas, a community of independent musicians. She was the vocalist of an alternative rock band, Indio, and now ventures world music, collaborating with different artists.

What to expect in Lam-Ang Musical

While the story of Lam-Ang was set in pre-colonial period, one can always expect the traditional elements in music. To make the dramatic flow progressive and close to the heart of young audiences, the composer chose to counter the "old age" expectation by fusing the elements of modern Filipino music which involves popular music, alternative rock, and indie folk. She also mentioned that her music influences are Bullet Dumas, Itchyworms, Sugarfree, Ben & Ben. She also listens to ethnic rock bands, Anima Tierra and Talahib.

About L
Lam-ang is an ethno-epic musical that re-imagines and reinterprets Biag ni Lam-ang, the oldest among the folk epics of Luzon. This play, which aims to rediscover a significant portion of Philippine culture and heritage, is inspired by the published Ilocano version of Isabelo delos Reyes and Tagalog translations of Angel Acacio and Ariel Tabag.

The musical takes us back to thetimes when we were our own selves by ourselves in our own little worlds. It chronicles the conquests of Lam-ang from the land of Nalbuan while envisioning local traditions that are being lost, ancient customs and lores that are being forgotten,and vestiges of our affluent past that are in danger of disappearing forever.

The show is written by Eljay Castro Deldoc (new book and lyrics), with music and lyrics by Jen Darlene Torres. It is co-directed by Fitz Bitana and Marco Viaña (who also serves as set designer).

Other parts of the artistic team were TJ Ramos (musical direction and sound design), JM Cabling (choreography), Bonsai Cielo (costume design), and Meliton Roxas Jr. (lighting design). Lam-ang will run from December 6 to 15 at the CCP Little Theater.

Future Projects

Jen Darlene is eyeing on making more new musicals featuring original Pinoy music starting 2020, with the help of Alab at Sinag and more underground music organizations.