Thursday, November 6, 2014

I remember Hajun's and Harold's "Tatay Melo"

Tatay Melo

Carmelo "Tatay Melo" Miciano was the proud father of two members of our community theater, Teatro Balangaw. He has today joined the Creator according to a post by a sister of his.

I remember how really proud Tatay Melo was of the artistic work contributed by his sons, Hajun and Harold, to our small group back in the late 90's. The brothers were the lead players in my "Mara Unduk" dance-drama that had performances in several Marinduque towns then as well as in some barangays in Boac. (Also at Rajah Sulaiman Theater, Nayong Pilipino and Museong Pambata).

They were also part of a Teatro Balangaw-PETA play back in 1997, "Putik sa Karamihan, Ginto sa Iilan" about the Marcopper disaster that transpired in Marinduque a year before and its effects on the lives of the people.

The project was filmed by Oceanic Films for European television and titled "Swapping Stories". There was a segment in it that included an interview with Tatay Melo joined by Hajun and Harold while fishing along the coast of Laylay, Boac. There, the old man complained of dwindling catch after the environmental disaster.

A book was later published, Community Theater: Global Perspectives by renowned expert of community theater, Eugene van Erven. The book came with the said unique video record of van Erven's journey to Marinduque.

On page 49, van Erven wrote:

After the show, Ernie (Cloma) takes the microphone to tell the audience that the play they have seen is the result of a five-day workshop with members of Teatro Balangaw and artist-teachers from PETA and that they dedicate the performance to the people of Marinduque. Melo Miciano, Harold's and Hajun's father, tells me he is proud of his sons and expresses the hope that they will perform the play in other Marinduque communities as well. Several unidentified local environmental activists comment that they equally enjoyed it and that they noticed that a lot of the factual information in the play was new to the audience:
Many people from Boac town have never been up to the barrio. They know about it, generally, but don't seem to care. Looking  around me I also noticed how people tuned in to the entertainment elements in the show, but turned off during the more serious parts. But this kind of theater is good; it will draw people's attention, like fish to a bait.

Part of a page from Community Theater: Global Perspectives


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