Tony winning play to have Asian premiere in PH

Posted at 02/11/13 4:32 PM

Bart Guingona and Joaquin Valdes in a scene from the play "Red".

MANILA, Philippines -- “Red”, the 2010 Tony Award winner for Best Play by American writer John Logan about the famous abstract expressionist painter artist Mark Rothko, will have its Asian premiere in the Philippines.

To be staged by The Necessary Theatre, “Red” is set to open on February 22 at the College of St. Benilde School of Design And Arts in Manila. Other performances are scheduled on February 23 and March 1 and 2.

“Red” won almost every major award in London when it premiered in 2009 and went on to do the same in New York the following year.

In the play, Logan, who also wrote the screenplay of the movies “The Last Samurai” and “Gladiator”, speculates about one of the most enigmatic incidents in the 20th century art world.

In 1958, Rothko was commissioned for an astounding sum to paint a series of murals for the cutting-edge Seagram Building on Park Avenue. After completing the works, he decides to keep them and returns every penny of his commission. Years later, he donates the works to the Tate Gallery in London and commits suicide.

The play introduces a fictitious assistant who engages Rothko in arguments and conversations that ultimately make the audience understand why he might decide to withdraw his work from the commission.

Rothko will be played by theater veteran Bart Guingona, who also directs the play.

Joaquin Valdes, who started his career at the age of 9 in “The Lion, the Witch and the Wardrobe,” plays the fictional assistant Ken.

“Red” is produced by Actor’s Actors Inc. and the College of St. Benilde’s The Vito Cruz Project.

Tickets are available at Ticketworld. For more information, visit its Facebook page at www.facebook.com/TheNecessaryTheatre.