Arts & Culture (01/31/24)

MCAD exhibit inspired by gaming

THE MUSEUM of Contemporary Art and Design (MCAD) Manila presents the exhibit “30 Lives” from Jan. 31 to March 31. The exhibit title is derived from the extra 30 lives that video players get after entering the “Konami code” (up, up, down, down, left, right, left, right, B, A, Start) in a console’s controller. It presents the various ways in which people engage in the world of play and game, or gaming, as the contemporary world now calls it. Play is a space that we occupy temporarily, as are games, the latter governed by more formal rules. Both are diversions from the everyday, and this interim from reality — whether occupying a physical space (such as a basketball court) or a mental space (such as a board game or video game) — becomes a site where critique, and even subversion, can be constructed. The exhibition features works of Harun Farocki, Lu Yang, Heecheon Kim, Ikoy Ricio, and Miguel Inumerable. Also featured are games developed by students of the Interactive Entertainment and Multimedia Computing program of the De La Salle-College of Saint Benilde. MCAD Manila is at the G/F of the Design + Arts Campus of the De La Salle-College of Saint Benilde. Free to the public, the museum opens Tuesdays to Saturdays, 10 a.m. to 6 p.m.; and Sundays from 10 a.m. to 2 p.m., except holidays. To book a visit, go to

Rama, Hari returns for ARDP’s 2024 dance season

AFTER a highly acclaimed 2023 run, Rama, Hari returns onstage by popular demand, opening the 2024 season of Alice Reyes Dance Philippines (ARDP). The production is the only collaboration that features the work of five National Artists: Alice Reyes for the direction and choreography, Ryan Cayabyab for the music, Bienvenido Lumbera for the libretto, Salvador Bernal for the production design, and Rolando Tinio for the English lyric translations. The production, which has both singers and dancers portraying each role, features singers Arman Ferrer and Vien King and dancers Richardson Yaado and Ejay Arisola as Rama; singers Karylle Tatlonghari, Shiela Valderrama-Martinez, and Nica Tupas and dancers Monica Gana and Katrene San Miguel as Sita. There will be 2 and 7:30 p.m. shows from Feb. 16 to 18 and Feb. 23 to 25 at the Samsung Performing Arts Theater in Circuit, Makati. Reserve tickets via TicketWorld or

Artistespace to hold Blanco family exhibit

ON JAN. 31, the Belmont Hotel will open the exhibit “Hiraya: The Legacy of the Blanco Family,” curated by Artistespace, and done in partnership with the Blanco Family Museum. In observance of National Arts Month, the exhibit recognizes the Blanco family’s four decades of contributing to promoting arts and culture. The exhibit — which showcases works by Jose Glenn Blanco, Noel Blanco, Michael Blanco, Joy Blanco, Alejandro, Jan Blanco, Gay Blanco, and Peter Paul Blanco — will help raise funds for Habitat for Humanity’s Bahay Ni Juan Project. It will run from Jan. 31 to Feb. 29.

Alice in Wonderland-inspired dance play on bullying

ADA, Lundag sa Hiwaga, a full-length play which delves into teenage bullying, self-empowerment, and resilience through a tale of mythical Philippine folklore creatures, will be staged starting Feb. 1. Inspired by Alice in Wonderland, the dance performance follows high school student Ada, who faces day-to-day intimidation from her once close friend after an incident during a seemingly innocent game. Her life takes a positive turn after she stumbles upon a magical realm which is inhabited by mythological beings such as the bakunawa (a serpent-like dragon), diwata (fairies), duwende (dwarfs), and kapre (tree demon). The 90-minute production features De La Salle-College of Saint Benilde Dance Program students. It is written by Jay “BJ” Crisostomo IV, directed by Madonna Tinoy and Mycs Villoso, and produced by Nina Anonas. Ada, Lundag sa Hiwaga will have performances from Feb. 1 to 3, 1 and 6 p.m., at the 5F Theater of the Benilde Design + Arts Campus, 950 Pablo Ocampo St., Malate, Manila. Tickets are available for P600. Learn more at

Sustainable indigenous crafts championed in exhibit

THE BRITISH COUNCIL and the Forest Foundation Philippines celebrated the culmination of the Woven Networks program through the opening “ReSTORYation: Weaving Creators, Communities and Connections,” an exhibit mounted at the College of Home Economics (CHE) Museum in the University of the Philippines Diliman (UPD). Woven Networks supported grantees who worked across different forest landscapes and islands in the Philippines such as Isabela, Bukidnon, Samar, Leyte, and Palawan. The exhibit showcases bamboo fabrics woven by Isabela’s Indigenous Enabel Craft and their partner social enterprise Panublix. Grantee Emmanuelle Andaya also worked with the Kalandang Higaonon Weavers in Bukidnon, also called Peace Weavers, while woven products from Samar and Leyte done in collaboration with British-Filipino designer Diana Auria are also on display. The exhibit runs until March 11 at the UP CHE Costume Museum, UPD. Tours are also available; e-mail UP CHE Costume Museum at for reservations.

Met’s permanent collection unveiled in new exhibit

AFTER holding a series of stand-alone exhibits since moving to its new location at Bonifacio Global City (BGC) from its long-time home along Roxas Blvd. in Manila, the Metropolitan Museum of the Philippines’ will again show items from its own collection in the new exhibit, “Histories and Horizons: The Metropolitan Museum of Manila Permanent Art Collection.” It includes paintings, sculptures, drawings, prints, assemblages, some photographs, and a couple of video art pieces. The exhibit looks at history not as a concluded past but as interpretations of events in the past that continue to influence the present. The exhibition will open on Feb. 1 at the 3F North Gallery of the Metropolitan Museum in Bonifacio Global City.