Snow White doesn’t get enough credit as the OG (original gangster, to the uninitiated) fairy tale princess. When we list down our faves, we tend to dismiss her because she was the least good looking/most poorly drawn, given technology’s limitations back then — so much for “fairest of them all.” But she was a trendsetter, whether we like it or not, and it’s about time that’s recognized.
This is why I was only too happy to haul butt on a Saturday morning to see Repertory Philippines’ staging of Snow White and the Seven Dwarfs, an adaptation of the original tale by Michael Valenti and Elsa Rael. While everyone else was curing their Friday hangovers, I was happily seated with my mom and lola, who turned out to be more excited than I was. I might have arguably been the biggest kid in the theater — it was teeming with children and their parents — and I totally didn’t mind. It just made me feel more like a princess than usual.
Repertory’s version of Snow White remains largely the same as the original Disney version, but with added classical ballet in the choreography for that something extra. I particularly enjoyed Bituin Escalante as the Evil Queen; she really managed to pull off that comical menace that really brought the show together. There were also interactive pockets within the show, where they invited kids onstage to try yodeling, and even through the regular dialogue, the audience would react to every word. (“It’s the prince! The prince!” the kid behind me said, as if we weren’t watching the same play. Did I request for the commentary reel? But okay, he gets a free pass.)
You can’t really expect any less of a childlike spectacle from director Joy Virata (“A legend,” my lola emphasized) and a cast that includes Christine Flores, Alana Vicente, Becca Coates (of the Sandbox Collective’s Dani Girl!), Dani Prieto, Bituin Escalante, Ring Antonio, Hans Eckstein, Jos Jalbuena and Jef Flores. If I only had the time and energy, I would certainly try to catch all alternates on the show. Because perhaps my favorite part of Repertory’s Snow White is the light feeling you leave the theater with. A happiness, of sorts, one that reminds you that in this day in age, fairy tales are still totally real.
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Snow White and the Seven Dwarfs will be staged until Dec. 10 at Onstage Theater, Greenbelt 1, Makati City. Tickets are P400 to P600. For more details, call Repertory Philippines at 843-3570. Book tickets through TicketWorld at 891-9999 or through their website www.ticketworld.com.ph.