Since we’ve introduced you to the PMSTA Players, we wanted to share some of the work these women have accomplished.
Maggie Suarez-Calixton got her start in theater through Revival Arts Productions. In their production of Tatarin, fittingly about Filipina women’s liberation, Suarez-Calixton is named the stage manager. She continued on as a Co-Producer for Revival Arts Productions, putting on wildly successful shows such as ‘The Banana Fairy (Mutya ng Saging)‘ and ‘Shadows’.
Tatarin, the critically acclaimed play by the late Nick Joaquin, has always been regarded as one of the most powerful dramatic pieces to portray the sexual, social and political liberation of the Filipina. Set in the American-dominated Philippines during 1920s, clan patriarch Don Paeng finds his rule and power challenged when his wife, the conservative, once subservient Lupe, slowly becomes involved in a secret fertility ritual restricted to women. In “Tatarin,” the disenfranchised voiceless women, mostly from the poorer classes, join the annual ritual to cast away their inhibitions and regain the exalted position their gender enjoyed during the pre-Spanish era. Amidst the male dominated society, the lady priestesses or babaylans intentionally set the “Tatarin” during the Precession of St. John the Baptist to throw the suspicious off their traditional practices while announcing to the society, ³Women are godesses and men are slaves that obey their every wish”.
The play is based on “Summer Solstice,” which won the Philippines Free Press citation for Best Short Story in 1945. Recently, it was made into a movie by Tikoy Aguiluz.
Revival Arts Productions is a theater arts organization committed to bringing life to plays written by Filipino playwrights. Translated in English, these classic works give an artistic look at the Filipino Culture while showcasing the talent of today’s young performers that include actors, dancers, musicians, directors, designers, and artists from all over the Bay Area.