Owing to the proliferation of fake news in social media and the widespread belief that the atrocities commited by the Marcos regime during the Martial Law era were mere myths, PETA’s A Game of Trolls seeks to reverse the effects of historical revisionism.
Especially targeted at millenials, A Game of Trolls is presented by the Philippine Educational Theater Association (PETA) and supported by the National Historical Commision of the Philippines (NHCP), Bantayog ng mga Bayani Foundation and DAKILA: Philippine Collective for Modern Heroism. The play was a direct response to the burial of dictator Ferdinand Marcos at the Libingan ng mga Bayani late last year.
Described as a protest play by Director Maribel Legarda, the script written by Liza Magtoto has also undergone changes since its initial viewing in response to the extrajudicial killings and the recent House vote on the Commission on Human Rights’ proposed Php1000 2017 budget. Indeed, PETA now on its 50th year, makes clear on where it stands politically.
The opening scene introduces us to the main character, Hector (played by Myke Salomon), a paid internet troll who handles numerous fictitious Facebook accounts and whose job is to counter anyone who comments against the Marcos era with fallacies and ad hominem attacks. Hector works for the antagonist, Bimbam (played by Vince Lim) who runs a call-center-like company aimed at attacking anti-Marcos netizens and spreading fake news, taking advantage of the apathy of millennials towards the Martial Law era.
The haunting portrayal of the characters and the compelling music and lyrics by Vincent de Jesus were simply moving. And the use of social media and technology were seamlessly incorporated into the two-hour play, a perfect employ to use theater to move the greater millenial audience.
A Game of Trolls cast comprises of theater veterans and PETA artists, Myke Salomon, Upeng Galang-Fernandez, Vince Lim, Gold Villar-Lim, TJ Valderama, Gail Guanlao-Billones, Lemuel Silvestre, Joseph Madriaga, Kiki Baento, Gilbert Onida, John Moran, Juan Miguel Severo, Norbs Portales, Roi Calilong, Jasper Jimenez, Ada Tayao, Lea Espallardo, Icee Po, Nieves Reyes, Dan Cabrera, Jason Barcial, and Justin Castillo.
A Game of Trolls is currently showing until September 30 at the PETA-Phinma Theater at 5 Eymard Drive, New Manila, Quezon City. For tickets, contact TicketWorld (632-891-9999) or visit www.ticketworld.com.ph, and for show buyer information, visit www.petatheater.com.