Learn a little about Mel Badiola, who plays Nestor Noralez and Chiquiting Moreno in Dogeaters.
How did you first get involved in the project?
I first got involved with the project during Magic’s Virgin Play Series in 2014. The reading was sold out and a large number of patrons were unfortunately turned away.
What are you most looking forward to about this production?
There’s a lot to look forward to in this production. However, I’m really excited about the wonderful costumes Brandin and Karina has tirelessly been putting together. I am always at the edge of my seat whenever I come in for a costume fitting.
What is your pre-show ritual?
I’m a simple kind of guy. I like to take a 15-20 min nap, if time allows it. Then about 15 minutes of vocal and physical warms ups. Go over any notes I got from the previous performance while putting on my make-up. Drink water. Go to the bathroom and freak out for exactly 1 minute, in silence of course. And lastly, pop a ginger chew candy after we get the call to, “places!”
Why do you think it is important that we produce this play today? How do you think it will resonate with a contemporary audience?
I think it’s important to produce this play, because its themes and struggles are still relevant to Pilipinos, Filipino-Americans, and the American audiences today. Themes and struggles such as immigration, colonial mentality, LGBT issues, and political corruption that all forms of government can fall victim to. It is also important for American audiences to witness and experience a brief moment in the Philippines’ colorful history, even if it’s told through the lives of these “fictional” characters.
You know, I don’t think I have an answer to that question. I do believe that audiences will either love it or hate it. However, I will appreciate and be grateful at the fact that they took a chance in getting to know a culture where all they might know is that lumpia is a deep fried Filipino dish and every Filipino household has a karaoke machine.
Anything can happen with live performance, do you have a funny moment/embarrassing memory to share?
Yes, it happened a few years ago. While the stage manager called 2 mins until “Places”, I told myself, “Hey I didn’t stretch my lower back!” As I assumed the position, legs spread apart, at squat stance, getting ready to turn right, I hear a loud “RIP”. YES, my pantaloons had sprung a tear. From crotch to the upper crest of my ass. Then my Stage Manager calls, “PLACES!”. With no extra pair of pants, or seamstress, or dressers, or time, or a sewing kit; I went and did the show. With torn pants. Oh the thrill and drama of live performances!