PETA Returns to Live Performances with "Walang Aray"

The Philippine Educational Theater Association (PETA) returns to full live performances with a brand-new original musical, Rody Vera’s Walang Aray, starting February 17, 2023!

Waiting in the wings since its first laboratory performance in 2018 and 2019, Walang Aray launches PETA’s comeback and emerald year. After three years of various challenges faced both in the country and globally, with the COVID-19 pandemic among other things, the return to the theater is something that has been highly anticipated both by audiences and artists. 

It’s necessary, after three years of what we went through — not only the pandemic but also the elections — to do something irreverent and funny. I think that is what people need right now. They need a space to laugh, to sort of allow themselves to have fun and enjoy something,” shares PETA artistic director, Maribel Legarda.

But of course, in PETA, it’s not just having fun,” Legarda adds, “PETA believes that good comedy makes you think and reflect, and Walang Aray is exactly that.” 

Presented by PETA with Indie.Go Media in partnership with Star Magic, PHINMA, and the Local Government of Quezon City, Walang Aray is a genre-defying adaptation of the screenplay of the same name, based on Severino Reyes’ classic zarzuela Walang Sugat. Legarda describes the new musical as “a play that could make it really entertaining but at the same time, reflective of us as Filipinos and our own histories.” Walang Aray richly mashes the timeless classic with contemporary language, funk and pop tunes, and tongue-in-cheek humor. 

Photos courtesy of PETA

This production looks at our history in the hopes of encouraging reflections regarding our current situation as a nation. In Walang Aray, you will find a re-imagination of old themes peppered with contemporary references. Walang Aray tries to do what Walang Sugat has masterfully done in the past: look at present painful conditions with humor, poke fun at what ails us to jolt us into feeling and thinking, and caring. Beyond the laughter, I hope Walang Aray also leads us on what needs to be done in our current situation,” shares Walang Aray director Ian Segarra.

Walang Aray is top-billed by Star Magic’s “hottest musical couple” #KDLex, KD Estrada and Alexa Ilacad, alternating with triple threat theater artists Gio Gahol, Jon Abella, Marynor Madamesila, Shaira Opsimar as Tenyong and Julia. 

The cast also features PETA artists Jarred Jaicten, Bene Manaois, Kiki Baento, Carlon Matobato, Gie Onida, Norbs Portales, Neomi Gonzales, John Moran, Tom Bienvenida, Donn Boco, Gerard Dy, Yeyin Dela Cruz, Ada Tayao, and Ayla Garcia, with Gardo Exconde and Csai Habla as the swings.

The musical features young PETA artists at the helm of its creatives: Ian Segarra (director), Vince Lim (composer, musical director, sound designer, additional lyrics), Happy Constantino (sound designer), Gio Gahol (choreographer), Julio Garcia (production designer) and Ayla Garcia (voice coach). They are joined by guest artists, David Esguerra (lighting designer), and JayLo Cunanan (costume designer).

As 2023 begins, the curtains on stage begin to finally rise, and PETA is excited and ready to welcome audiences old and new once again into its theater. Aside from signaling the comeback to live performances, Walang Aray also signals a new hope and refreshed determination for Filipinos to face yet another new chapter of life not without its own set of challenges, but with a strengthened resolve to set on a new journey beyond the pandemic.

Walang Aray will run at the PETA Theater Center from Feb 17-May 14, 2023. Tickets are available via For more information, follow PETA’s social media pages @petatheater. 

Edward Santos

EDnything is a lifestyle and entertainment blog featuring great deals and happenings in the Philippines. It also features food reviews, gadgets, showbiz, movies and theater plays, and more!

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