We are in need of funding for our play "Reyna Elena", which will be staged at the Xavier University - Little Theater (Cagayan de Oro City) on November 10&11, 2016. The play is in English and set in the Philippines. We are knocking on the kind hearts of anyone who loves theater and the arts. Looking for sponsors or financial assistance for projects like this has always been a problem for many of us here in the city. We are hoping that by going "out of our comfort zones", we'll be able to get some help.
About Reyna Elena
“Reyna Elena” is an original full-length play in English that won 2nd place in the 1983 Palanca Memorial Awards for Literature. Its story is something that anyone can relate with. It may have been written in the early 80s, but the themes it tackles are still very much in the spotlight nowadays. Allow me to give you a brief description of the story.
Elenita is a 30-something single mom who works as a manager’s assistant in a small company. Her best friend Karen is the executive secretary. The two of them are the only ones who know about Elenita’s relationship with their married boss, Teodoro. As the story progresses, Elenita’s delicate condition is revealed and this is where the problems begin.
At some point in the story, Elenita goes away to weigh things and recover from a traumatic incident. When she goes back to the office, she becomes a totally new person. That’s when she transforms into Elena and starts a new chapter in her life.
More than extramarital affairs and single parenthood, “Reyna Elena” talks about the importance of relationships. Relationships with the family, with friends, with colleagues, and with members of the community. It also tackles decades old issues like graft and corruption.
It is also the story of a woman struggling to survive against all the challenges she faces.
We believe that these are themes modern day audiences can understand. Our goal is to make the story reach as many people as possible.
Additionally, it is also our goal to inspire our fellow local artists and theater groups to stage more original plays and stories by Kagay-anons. We intend to return the spotlight to Cagayan de Oro’s local talents. And we hope you share our vision for the local arts & culture scene in the city.
About Maria Soledad "Chic" Nery-Fortich:
Chic Fortich (her by-line) was a writer for various publications in Manila and Cagayan de Oro. She wrote “Reyna Elena” as part of her final project for a playwriting workshop in 1983. Her mentor was the renowned director, writer, and critic Nestor U. Torre.
Chic suffered from two eye diseases: Retinitis Pigmentosa and Optic Atrophy. RP is a genetic disease, which caused her to slowly lose her eyesight. When she died in 2006, she was already 98% blind.
But this didn’t stop her from doing what she wanted. Aside from writing plays, she also wrote several Tagalog novels (and some in English), and she was likewise an active advocate for the Philippine Blind Union. The staging of Reyna Elena is a tribute to her since 2016 marks her 10th death anniversary.
Proceeds of the Show:
Part of the proceeds of the show will be used as a starting fund for the publication of Chic's short stories, as well as anecdotes from her Philippine Daily Inquirer column "Outtasight" column. A certain amount will also be used to revive her play Ay Kasing Kasing Ko!, an original Binisaya musical that was first staged at the Dalubdulaan of the Manila Metropolitan Theater, and the XU-Little Theater here in CDO.