Daragang Magayon. An Albay farmer watches Mayon Volcano fumes after it spewed lava and ash during its last eruption in 2009
HARNESSING arts, culture and romance for economic development may sound novel to many Filipinos but if Albay’s attempt proves successful, it can have tremendous implications and ramifications on Philippine development as a whole.
February 2013 takes on a new significance and dimension with the pre-Valentine presentation in ballet form of Daragang Magayon, the legend of Mayon Volcano and Albay on Feb 8 at the Cultural Center of the Philippines Main Theatre.
Daragang Magayon is produced by the Albay provincial government as part of a revitalized tourism development program that would offer guests an opportunity to take a fresher look into Albay’s mesmerising mythical past, magic and mystery.
Those familiar with the Daragang Magayon saga are up for some pleasant surprises.
They will find many new things in the rather worn out tale of love and sacrifice in the ballet presentation Daragang Magayon: An Istorya ni Mayon,
Choreographer Gerald Mercado of eDance created new dance movements that are uniquely Filipino, both in technique and aesthetics, and the use of ethnic Filipino instruments will give the production an original aura.
The E-dance’s version of Daragang Magayon smoothly elicits and provokes new expressions from out of the latent emotions in both old and new complexes of the legend.
Film-maker Chuck Escasa and animator Benjie Marasigan contribute their expertise to the project by infusing it with film and visual elements, especially the use of
two-dimensional film technology to ensure a vibrant, lively account of the lovers’ affair in the mythical legend.
The stage project also brings together for the first time three contemporary Filipino artists who fuse their talents to produce a refreshed rendition of the Magayon love story.
National Artist Virgilio Almario penned the libretto while composer Ramon Pagayon Santos crafted the musical score.
Albay poet laureate Abdon Balde Jr also introduced new elements and enhanced old Bicol rituals including the fight scenes between the just and mighty god Gugurang and the evil Aswang. – Manila Standard Today