So says well-known theatre critic Mario Hernando as noted in his blog. As does celebrated cultural journalist Rosalinda L. Orosa who in her own words was stupendously surprised at “the singing, acting, staging, lighting, dancing and direction — all these expressing Chua’s book, lyrics and music — rendered Marco Polo comparable to the best musicals I have seen here and abroad. It could be for this reason executive producer Olivier Leonard reportedly plans to stage Marco Polo in London.”
Manila’s beautiful people was led by no less than Fil-Am philanthropist and art patroness Loida Nicolas-Lewis who helped launched this first musical composed by a Filipino helmed for West End and Broadway among bankers and investors in New York last year. The new musical is written and composed by stage actor, singer and director Rogelio Saldo Chua. It will be performed by a 40-member international cast and artistic team dominated by seasoned Filipino theatre professionals led by formerly New York-based actor David Bianco in the role of Marco Polo. Playing the role of Princess Kogajin is Fil-Am Stephanie Reese who was Tuptim in the revival of King & I on the West End and performed the lead role of Kim in the German version of Miss Saigon. The two leads will be supported in the Manila premiere by Pinky Marquez as Empress Wu, Chinggoy Alonso as Rustigielo and George Yang as Kublai Khan.
The Manila premiere of the full musical theatre version starts with the gala night on February 8, 2014, Saturday at 8 pm and a 3 pm matinee performance on February 9, Sunday. All shows are at Meralco Theatre, Ortigas, Pasig. A road show covering cities in Asia and Europe is being planned to drum up investor interest in the West End London opening. For tickets, call TicketWorld at 891-9999 or email firstname.lastname@example.org.