After an exciting week of technical and dress rehearsals at the John F. Kennedy Center in Washington, D.C., this beautiful group of people – singers, instrumentalists, technical crew, producers, MAFFAA, and the exceedingly capable Union Crews of the Kennedy Center – came together to make two solid, moving, amazing performances in the Einsenhower Theater. Noli Me Tángere, the novel by the Philippine national hero, Jose Rizal, was set to music by the composer, Felipe Padilla de Leon. It is a very powerful story that lends itself very naturally to the operatic stage. We had such wonderfully receptive audiences with a large turnout by the Filipino community.
I will miss these wonderful people who have become like a family to me. We had great times on the stage and off. We made something very exciting and I really hope that we get the chance to do it again very soon. This is a work of art that deserves more attention, and I hope that this successful run in our National Theater is only the beginning!
We even had a wonderful review in the Washington Post.
Watch and listen to us in this video review of the Opera from a Philippine news channel from the Kennedy Center in Washington, DC.
My character was Doña Victorina de los Reyes de Espadaña, commonly known as Doña Victorina, is an ambitious Filipina who classifies herself as a Spanish. She also mimics Spanish ladies by putting on heavy make-up and combining European fashion with Philippine styles. The novel narrates Doña Victorina’s younger days: she had lots of admirers, but she did not choose any of them because nobody was a Spaniard. Later on, she met and married Don Tiburcio de Espadaña, an official of the customs bureau. However, their marriage was childless.
Her husband assumes the title of medical doctor even though he never attended medical school; using fake documents and certificates, Tiburcio practices illegal medicine. Tiburcio’s usage of the title Dr. consequently makes Victorina assume the title Dra. (doctora, female doctor). Apparently, she uses the whole name Doña Victorina de los Reyes de de Espadaña, with double de to emphasize her marriage surname. She seems to feel that this awkward titling makes her more “sophisticated.”
Enjoy to seeing a Virtual Tour of the Einsenhower Theater.