Culture Shock Productions in partnership with FringeMNL did a truly ground-breaking venture in mounting ‘Sa Wakas’ with Caisa Borromeo, Fredison Lo, and Kyla Rivera on the lead roles; as they breathed into the characters to bring life into the music of ‘Sugarfree’, one of the country’s most beloved alternative rock bands.
‘Sa Wakas’ is a collaborative work of Andrei Nikolai Pamintuan and Mariane Abuan with the music beautifully arranged by Ejay Yatco. Sugarfree music has provided the poetry of the three main leads’ emotional roller-coaster ride as they come to terms with themselves and the love they have for each other—Lexi to Topper; Topper to Lexi; and Topper to Gabbi, and vice versa.
While watching the musical, it is relatable for those who have experienced what it means to love; how much one has invested in making a relationship work, and how hard it is to make choices if one who is caught in the web of infidelity and all. It explores and attempts to present the possibilities of a particular relationship that does not share similar life goals and values might end up or last longer.
Though done in flashbacks, it was still presented clearly. There was nothing annoying and confusing about it. It takes a ‘heart’ to fully comprehend what’s happening within the play and its characters involved. It’s like when one gets to love—one never gets to intellectualize it. Pamintuan and Abuan’s work is one work to be hailed as an original Filipino piece that may set the trend for other future musical adaptations in Philippine theatre.
The musical production itself is perhaps a ‘One More Try’ and a ‘(500) Days of Summer’ kind of piece that touches the Filipino hearts. Songs like ‘Kuwarto’, ‘Telepono’, and ‘Wala’ were among the most powerful songs in the production. The song that Ebe Dancel’s song, he particularly composed for the said show—titled ‘Bawat Daan’ was fitting and moving that concluded the first act.
In act two, audience were glued with the three musical numbers: ‘Dear Kuya’, ‘Ang Pinakamagaling na Tao’, and ‘Tulog Na’.
‘Sa Wakas’ promises to bring together the world of pop rock and musical theatre in one material that paints whatever barriers or differences are often addressed with as long as there is mutual understanding and acceptance in between parties.
Lo as Topper, as a struggling photographer who got entangled with the two women—Borromeo and Rivera as Lexi and Gabbi, respectively. Borromeo’s character, a resident physician who is willing to settle down but not to have kids since her priority is her profession as opposed to Rivera’s Gabbi, who shares the same values with Topper—to have a family and rear kids.
The three leads delivered their parts well. There was no overshadowing of any character’s moments. Even the four-ensemble singers provided the needed emotions of what the audience should expect and imagine on certain scenes. None of them onstage could be considered left out.
The show will still run at the PETA-PHINMA Theatre with matinee and evening performances on April 26, 27, and 28. Tickets are available at all Ticketnet outlets located at the SM Department Store Customer Service Area and at the Araneta Coliseum Ticket Booths. For inquiries and reservations, please call (632) 9115555 or visit http://www.SaWakas.com.