The members of the research team used methods from theater studies, anthropology and cultural heritage studies. For the research team, the design of a performance script serves as a better tool to focus on the main agenda of the project: to problematize the concept of heritage. The San Agustin Church inside the walled city is one of the four Baroque churches in the Philippines collectively inducted as a UNESCO World Heritage Site.
The outline of Intramuro's walls is the buffer zone for the aforementioned heritage site; therefore, the UNESCO inscription has unofficially extended to all of Old Manila. In addition to the informants, the performance material also contains research into heritage and articles about Intramuros. This technique is the fusion of form and content, and the thinking of writing complicates both the notions of the theatrical and the dramatic in the storytelling.
In the case of The Intramuros Project, the vision was simply to unearth the potential and the problematic of the concept of heritage outside the academic discourse. The team members internalized this insight and treated the informants as characters in the documentary play. In Intramuros, several of the informants do not share an absolute idea of how the fortified city should be divided and perceived as a cultural heritage – that is the dramatic and theatrical tension in the play.
Two researchers (Mananaliksik A and Mananaliksik B) are commissioned to carry out an ethnography of ancient Manila. The next section is a short conversation from the researchers with “Ang Kutsero at ang Padyak Driver.” Both informants recall that not so long ago it was easier for them to drive tourists around Intramuros and even outside the walled city. The researchers take note of the concepts used by the journalists, but boil down to one sentence: painful to the eye of the walled city.
And within these walls the champions of Christ gathered to conquer the Orient of the Cross.” Bitoy Camacho's descriptions of Manila's decline are more apparent in the city's current state. Many of the unsuccessful settlers choose to remain as what are known in the media as "informal settlers."
This is probably the image of the jungle that forms the slums in Camacho's descriptions in Joaquin's play.1. The room takes its name from the 87th Spanish Governor General of the Philippines, Domingo Moriones y Murillo.2. Those who are understood as the authority of heritage continually use the history of the glorious past as the main defining framework for etching something as heritage.
The resettlement of the first group of informal settlers in the walled city of Intramuros is likely to be completed in 2021, when the Intramuros administration finally initiates a socialized housing program with relevant government authorities.
Lalo na mga puti po!
Yung mga Pinoy
Mabait po ‘yan
Tiatco is a full professor of theater and performance studies and currently chairs the UP Diliman Department of Speech Communication and Theater Arts. His book, Cosmopolitanism, Theater and the Philippines: Performing Community in a World of Strangers is the 2019 National Book Award Alfonso Ongpin Best Book on Art. Tiatco is associate editor of Contemporary Theater Review and Humanities Diliman and currently the main convener of the Asian Theater Working Group of the International Federation for Theater Research.
Viray is an assistant professor at the University of the Philippines Diliman and teaches theater and performance studies at both undergraduate and graduate levels. He has written essays and book chapters on dance rituals, cultural performance, protest theater in the Philippines, and performance archive. Nieto is an assistant professor in the Department of Speech Communication and Theater Arts at the University of the Philippines Diliman.
Together with playwright Layeta Bucoy, she built MonoVlog, an online performance genre that brings together diverse Filipino experiences of lockdown during the pandemic, and presented it to the theater and performance academic community during the Drama, Theater and Performance Studies Association Australasia 2020 Conference , collected by the School of Arts and Media at the University of New South Wales (UNSW). Her research interests include acting (theatre, television and film), embodied dramaturgy in performance and performance in digital and/or online platforms. Department of Speech Communication and Theater Arts, Room 1109 Pavilion 1, Palma Hall, College of Arts and Letters, UP Diliman, Quezon City.
The authors would like to thank the Office of the Vice Chancellor for Research and Development of the University of the Philippines Diliman through direct research support for funding the project. Finally, thanks also go to the field researchers of the project, who eventually became playwrights and potential readers of the play's script: James Luigi Tana, Hannah Villaflores, Aina Ramolete, Joshua Dolot, Chris Abecia, Dyastin Adarlo and Camilo de Guzman. 2 This passage (the second sentence beginning with "The plaza used to be ....") is a quote from Aquinas (2019).
4 This last sentence (in English), as well as the "western side", is a quote from Meta-Trip (n.d.)'s description of Plaza Moriones. 7 The phrase "articulated by the historiography of selective aggrandizement" is a passage from Shetty's (2004) "Rethinking Heritage: The Case of Heritage Conservation in Mumbai," cited in Dela Santa and Tiatco. Buhol-Buhol: The Possibilities and Problems of Entanglement in Contemporary Manila Theater.” Dissertation, National University of Singapore.