9 Must-Watch Theatrical Shows to See This 2019

Draw the curtains for 2019!

This year is sure to delight theater-goers with a promising lineup of onstage performances coming their way. From the internationally acclaimed Phantom of the Opera to the musical retelling of our very own epic fantasy Ibong Adarna, this year already leaves no worries for all the certified culture crowd out there! So, to help you list down the necessities for your anticipated ticket-shopping, we're giving you a rundown of 9 must-see theater plays showing on Manila this 2019!

1. Silent Sky
February 1 to 10, 2019
Carlos P. Romulo Auditorium

Photo courtesy of Repertory Philippines

The critically-acclaimed play by Lauren Gunderson, Silent Sky is based on the life of early 20th Century astronomer Henrietta Swan Leavitt and a group of female scientists whose research surpassed the male-dominated field of astronomy by discovering the truth of our universe: it does not end with the borders of our Milky Way galaxy, but it is only one of the billions of billions of galaxies. Original cast members include Cathy Azanza-Dy, Caisa Borromeo, Naths Everett, and Topper Fabregas, who also steps in as assistant director. Renowned actor-screenwriter and producer Bibeth Orteza will also return to the Philippine stage as another brilliant astronomer Annie Cannon.

Written By Lauren Gunderson
Directed by Joy Virata

2. Miong
February 15 to March 10, 2019
Onstage Theatre

Photo courtesy of Repertory Philippines

Miong tells the story of the first Philippine President, Gen. Emilio Aguinaldo in his humble beginnings to his fight for Philippine Independence, and in further strengthening the Filipino identity with its national flag and national anthem. Miong or Emilio Aguinaldo is played by Timmy Pavino.

Books, Lyrics & Directed by Joy Virata
Music by Ian Monsod
Additional Lyrics by Freddie Santos


3. The Phantom of the Opera
February 20, 2019
The Theatre at Solaire

Photo courtesy of Concertus Manila

The Gaston Leroux classic novel will once again be brought to life in Manila by Andrew Lloyd Webber’s Broadway musical The Phantom of the Opera. Having over 70 major theater awards, the blockbuster features 130 cast, crew, and orchestra members, awe-inspiring scenery, breathtaking special effects, and more than 230 costumes designed by the late international designer, Maria Björnson. It also offers some of Andrew Lloyd Webbers most famed music like “The Phantom of the Opera,” “Think of Me,” and “Music of the Night.”

Presented by Concertus Manila
Produced by Lunchbox Theatrical Productions

4. Ang Huling El Bimbo
March 1, 2019
Newport Performing Arts Theatre

Image: Resorts World Manila
Ang Huling El Bimbo cast (from left to right): Topper Fabregas, OJ Mariano, Tanya Manalang, Reb Atadero, Boo Gabunada, Gian Magdangal, and Jon Santos.

Now on its second run, Ang Huling El Bimbo is an original story that tells the strong relationship between people bound by friendship. It does not only bring back memories of old friends but will also pull out the nostalgia through the music of the most iconic Filipino rock band in the 90’s. The cast will be brought to life by actors Topper Fabregas, OJ Mariano, Tanya Manalang, Reb Atadero, Boo Gabunada, Gian Magdangal, and Jon Santos.

Produced by Resorts World Manila and Full House Theatre Company
Written by Dingdong Novenario
Directed and Choreographed by Dexter Santos

5. Angels in America
March 22 to April 7, 2019
Carlos P. Romulo Auditorium

Image: Atlantis Twenty

The Tony Award-winning play by Tony Kushner brings us back to mid-1980s where lives of several people are being tossed around by homosexuality, AIDS, drug addiction, and faith.

December 2018 had revealed the full Manila cast of the play, which includes Art Acuña as Roy Cohn, Pinky Amador as the Angel, Angeli Bayani as Harper Pitt, Topper Fabregas as Prior Walter, Cherie Gil as Hannah Pitt, Nelsito Gomez as Louis Ironson, Andoy Ranay as Belize, and Markki Stroem as Joe Pitt.

Written by Tony Kushner
Directed by Bobby Garcia

6. Father’s Day
March 22 to April 14, 2019
The Theatre at Solaire

Image: Repertory Philippines

A man turned bitter by the divorce that tore his family apart, Henry Willows’ winter takes an unexpected turn when he is visited by his estranged son Matthew, and his goth girlfriend Christine.  After being rude to the both of them, Matthew runs away, prompting Henry to call his ex-wife, Sue. The uneasy reunion turns into a recollection of the past as Matthew plans to rekindle his parents’ relationship. A heavy-themed story told through humorous antics, Father’s Day is sure to bring out the laughter in the most complex of situations.

Book by Eric Chappel
Directed by Baby Barredo

7. The Dresser
May 3 to 26, 2019
OnStage Theater

Image: Repertory Philippines

A touring theater company pushes through with their production of King Lear even as Germans with their bombs continue to lay waste to England. The brilliant actor Sir arrives on set in a delusional state, about to play the role of Lear. While the company disapproves this, Sir’s loyal dresser Norman does everything to ensure that the show will go on.

Directed by Loy Arcenas

8. The Quest for the Adarna
September 14 to January 12, 2020
OnStage Theater

Image: Repertory Philippines

Presented by Rep’s Theater for Young Audiences, The Quest for the Adarna is a musical retelling of Ibong Adarna. The play brings to life all-familiar characters in this magical journey of three princes whose quest is to find the mythical “Adarna” bird, the final hope to cure their father’s illness.

Written by Luna Griño Inocian
Music by Rony Fortich

9. Sweeney Todd 
October 2019
The Theatre at Solaire

Image: Atlantis Theatrical

The demon barber of Fleet Street slashes his way to Manila this October alongside his accomplice Mrs. Lovett. What’s expected to be more promising are the performances of rock icon and musical theater star Jett Pangan, and Award-winning Broadway actress Lea Salonga, who will play the murderous pair, Sweeney Todd and Mrs. Lovett. Sweeney Todd is one of the presentations of Atlantis Theatrical Entertainment Group for its 20th anniversary.

Music by Stephen Sondheim
Written by Hugh Callingham Wheeler
Directed by Bobby Garcia


Which of these shows are you most excited to see this year?


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