‘Virgin Labfest 13’ celebrates diverse unstaged plays with ‘Wagas’

The 13th Virgin Labfest will run from June 28 to July 16 at various venues of the Cultural Center of the Philippines.

In partnership with its resident theater company Tanghalang Pilipino and the playwright group Writer’s Bloc Inc., the Cultural Center of the Philippines (CCP) will host the 13th edition of the annual theater festival Virgin Labfest, which provides an opportunity for aspiring playwrights to create new works for the stage.


Tickets are available at the CCP box office and all TicketWorld outlets. For ticketing information, please call the CCP Marketing Department at 832-3706 or 832-3704 or email the Sales and Promotions Division at ccpsalesandpromo@gmail.com.

Each set is priced at 400 PHP. Students and PWDs may avail of the 20% discount (only over-the-counter).

Festival passes are available at 1600 PHP each.


READ MORE: Full schedule for Virgin Labfest 2017

The three-week festival promises to be a spectacular one offering twelve unpublished and unstaged plays and five new staged readings, written by 21 virgin playwrights, and three revisited plays all performed by 76 theater thespians and stalwarts and directed by 20 upcoming and established directors.

With overall theme “Wagas,” the festival of untried, unstaged and untested one-act plays offers a chance for new writers to see their creative skills taken from script to the stage. Out of more than 190 manuscripts submitted, 12 new plays were selected and were divided into four sets.

Tanghalang Aurelio Tolentino (CCP Little Theater)

The new plays are divided into four sets.


  • “Loveteam,” written by Oggie Arcenas and directed by veteran actor-director Michael Williams;
  • “Pilipinas Kong Mahal with All The Overcoat,” written by Eljay Castro Deldoc and directed by Roobak Valle; and
  • “Birdcage,” written by Rick Patriarca and directed by Ian Segarra.


  • “Ang Mga Puyong,” penned by Ryan Machado and directed by Ricardo Magno;
  • “Hindi Ako Si Darna” by playwrights Maynard Manansala and U Eliserio, directed by Andoy Ranay; and
  • “Boses ng Masa” by Joshua Lim So and directed by Guelan Luarca.


  • “Si Dr. Dolly Dalisay at Ang Mga Ladybugs” by Layeta Bucoy, directed by Jonathan Tadioan;
  • “Ang Bata Sa Bus Stop” by Sari Saysay and directed by Topper Fabregas; and
  • “Dear and Unhappy” by Carlo Vergara and directed by Ricky Villabona.


  • “Sincerity Biker’s Club” by playwright Adrian Ho and director Jenny Jamoral;
  • “Nothing But Dreams” by playwright Dingdong Novenario and director Carlitos Siguion-Reyna; and
  • “Ang Bahay sa Gitna ng Kawalan” by playwright Eliza A. Victoria and director George de Jesus complete the list.

VLF Revisited
Tanghalang Huseng Batute (CCP Studio Theater)

Three plays in the 2016 edition of the VLF will be mounted again this year.

  • “Ang Sugilanon ng Kabiguan ni Epefania” written by May Cardoso and directed by Charles Yee;
  • “Ang Bata sa Drum” by Dominique La Victoria and directed by Dudz Teraña; and
  • “Mula sa Kulimliman” by Carlo Vergara and directed by Hazel Gutierrez.

Bulwagang Amado V. Hernandez

The Staged Readings will feature the following:

  • “Point and Click” by playwright Jamie Bautista, directed by Mara Marasigan;
  • “Vertigo” by playwright Nicko Manipis de Guzman, directed by Yong Tapang;
  • “Walang Forever Virus” by playwright Fatrick Tabada, directed by Elmer Rufo;
  • “Ang Pag-uulyanin ni Olivia Mendoza” by playwright Rolin Migyuel Cadallo Obina, directed by Emmanuel dela Cruz; and
  • “Andiyan Lang” by playwright Kevin Tabora, directed by Dennis Marasigan.

Other Features

The much-awaited 3rd Virgin Labfest Anthology, composed of selected plays featured in the latest editions of the festival, will be unveiled during the festival.

The Virgin Labfest Writing Fellowship Program, a two-week mentorship program on the study and practice of dramatic writing for the stage, will also be held as part of the festival. The fellowship program aims to train young aspiring playwrights through a series of lectures, script critiquing, writing sessions and interactions with known playwrights, directors and selected actors.

‘Transformers: The Last Knight’ to hold midnight screenings on June 21 at 12:01 AM

The species war between flesh and metal begins earlier for Filipino fans as United International Pictures (UIP) has announced that Transformers: The Last Knight, will have special midnight screenings in participating cinemas nationwide on Wednesday, June 21 at 12:01 AM.

The public is advised to reserve and buy their tickets now to be among the first in the world to watch Michael Bay’s Transformers: The Last Knight, the fifth installment in the hugely successful franchise.

In Metro Manila, midnight screenings are confirmed to be held in Alabang Town Center, Greenbelt 3, Bonifacio High Street, Trinoma, Glorietta 4, Eastwood, Fisher Mall, Newport, Venice Cineplex, Uptown Cineplex, Starmall Edsa, Metropolis Alabang, Vista Taguig, Vista Evia Cinema, SM Aura, SM BF, SM Clark, SM Fairview, SM Mall of Asia, S’Maison, SM Megamall, SM North Edsa and SM Southmall.

Moviegoers in the provinces may watch at Starmall San Jose, Vista Sta. Rosa, Vista Bataan, Vista Pampangga, SM Baguio and SM Cebu.

For the updated list, fans may check with their favorite cinemas.

The Last Knight shatters the core myths of the Transformers franchise, and redefines what it means to be a hero. Humans and Transformers are at war, Optimus Prime is gone. The key to saving our future lies buried in the secrets of the past, in the hidden history of Transformers on Earth. Saving our world falls upon the shoulders of an unlikely alliance: Cade Yeager (Mark Wahlberg); Bumblebee; an English Lord (Sir Anthony Hopkins); and an Oxford Professor (Laura Haddock).

There comes a moment in everyone’s life when we are called upon to make a difference. In Transformers: The Last Knight, the hunted will become heroes. Heroes will become villains. Only one world will survive: theirs, or ours.

The film also stars Josh Duhamel, Isabella Moner, Stanley Tucci and John Turturro.

Transformers: The Last Knight is distributed by United International Pictures through Columbia Pictures.

‘Despicable Me 3’ hits year’s biggest opening weekend in PH for animated film, grosses P93.6-M

Universal Pictures and Illumination’s new comedy adventure Despicable Me 3 ran off with a Philippine box-office haul of P93.6-M to open a No.1 and grab the biggest opening weekend for an animated title in 2017.

Bowing two weeks earlier in the Philippines ahead of the US, Despicable Me 3 proved to be a worthy successor to its previous two blockbuster installments, reinforcing its formidable brand as a family franchise. Its successful launch in PH is the biggest in the region, grossing more than in Malaysia, Singapore and Thailand.

Here is the ranking of the cinemas with the highest box-office grosses:

  1. SM Mall of Asia
  2. Trinoma
  3. SM Megamall
  4. SM North EDSA
  5. Glorietta 4
  6. Power Plant
  7. Greenbelt 3
  8. Alabang Town Center
  9. Fairview Terraces
  10. SM Southmall
  11. SM Baguio
  12. SM Dasmariñas
  13. Robinsons Magnolia
  14. Fisher Mall
  15. SM Marikina
  16. SM Fairview
  17. Eastwood
  18. SM Clark
  19. Shang Cineplex
  20. Bonifacio High Street

Illumination Entertainment continues the story of Gru, Lucy, their adorable daughters—Margo, Edith and Agnes—and the Minions in Despicable Me 3.

After he is fired from the Anti-Villain League for failing to take down the latest bad guy to threaten humanity, Gru finds himself in the midst of a major identity crisis. But when a mysterious stranger shows up to inform Gru that he has a long-lost twin brother—a brother who desperately wishes to follow in his twin’s despicable footsteps—one former super-villain will rediscover just how good it feels to be bad.

Now playing across the Philippines, Despicable Me 3 is distributed by United International Pictures through Columbia Pictures.