"Here Lies Love" to make Broadway history with all-Filipino cast
NEW YORK - Asian American and Pacific Islander Heritage Month is underway, and the all-Filipino cast of a high-tech, highly anticipated musical is in rehearsals for a mid-June opening on Broadway.
The cast spoke about what makes this production authentic, historic and special.
"Here Lies Love" tells the story of Imelda Marcos, the former first lady of the Philippines. It's the work of David Byrne and Alex Timbers, who are getting ready to rock Broadway with a big immersive musical set in a disco. It's making history with groundbreaking staging and all-Filipino cast.
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"This show and the opportunity that it's giving to Filipino artists is huge because we've often been overlooked," Arielle Jacobs, who plays Imelda Marcos, said. "I've never played a Filipina, and as a Filipina getting the opportunity to do that now, I feel like I'm getting the opportunity to connect to my culture."
"We're moving the needle forward," Jose Llana, who plays Ferdinand Marcos, said.
"Filipino pride must be on full blast here," CBS2's Dave Carlin asked.
"Filipino Americans I think make up one out of every five Asians in America is Filipino, and we have been yearning for representation," Llana said.
"Entirely Filipino," co-producer and guest star Lea Salonga said. "I can't believe I'm a part of this cast. I can't believe I'm part of this moment."
"With all your success, to have you here means a lot to this cast and means a lot to the audience," Carlin said.
"We're all being empowered to take all of this information and really run it through our minds and our bodies and our hearts and portray it authentically on stage."
"It feels really profound, especially because it's AAPI month that we are able to be a part of the sexiest show on Broadway," Conrad Ricamora, who plays Ninoy Aquino, said. "And to be an all-Filipino cast, to be able to show that to a new generation, is really profound and exciting."
"Opportunities to tell our own story," actress Melody Butiu said.
"To take up space, claim our space as ourselves," actress Jasmine Forsberg said.
Previews begin for "Here Lies Love" on June 17 at the Broadway Theatre.
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