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Through the Bamboo

Through the Bamboo
Your Price: $18.95 CDN
Author: Andrea Mapili & Byron Abalos
Publisher: Playwrights Canada Press
Format: Softcover
# of Pages: 112
Pub. Date: 2021
ISBN-10: 0369102460
ISBN-13: 9780369102461

About the Play:

Through the Bamboo is a full-length play for young audiences by Andrea Mapili and Byron Abalos. When Philly's Lola (grandma) dies, she finds herself in the fantastical land of Uwi. Will Philly be able to end the reign of the evil Three Sisters, find her Lola, and bring her back home? Through the Bamboo is an action-packed tale suitable for the whole family, told in the style of The Wizard of Oz, The Chronicles of Narnia, and Alice in Wonderland while rooted in Philippine mythology.

Through the Bamboo is inspired by the Filipino myth of Manik Buangsi, the sky prince who falls in love with Tuan Putli, the mortal daughter of a sultan. The real-life husband and wife team of Byron Abalos and Andrea Mapili have transformed it into an epic about a smart 12-year-old Filipinx-Canadian hero whose Lola (grandma) has recently passed away. The independent, sarcastic and driven Philly is sorting through her grandmother's items when she opens an old book and suddenly finds herself in the fantastical land of Uwi. In Uwi, memories are stories, and all stories are forbidden since the Ruler's storytelling-loving wife died and his youngest daughter Nale disappeared. Now his remaining daughters, the evil Three Sisters, rule with darkness in their hearts. So when Philly appears, the goblins and other creatures of Philippine folklore believe that she is Nale and the key to restore storytelling in Uwi. Can Philly save them all while searching for her Lola to bring her back home? Similar to The Wizard of Oz, the Chronicles of Narnia, and Alice in Wonderland, Through the Bamboo is a unique Filipinx-Canadian tale inspired by Philippine mythology that shows the value of keeping memories alive and explores how families deal with loss.

Through the Bamboo premiered in 2019 at the Factory Theatre Mainspace during the Toronto Fringe Festival with an all-Filipinx cast (likely one of the largest in Toronto theatre history) and a nearly all-Filipinx crew, including director and dramaturge. The show was a heart-warming hit and was awarded Patron's Pick.

Cast: 7 female, 3 male

What people say:

"An immediate hit." — NOW Magazine

"An absolutely charming piece of young people's theatre ... a story that's both wonderfully culturally specific and emotionally universal." — Mooney on Theatre

"Fun, imaginative, and filled with mythology." — My Entertainment World

About the Playwright:

Andrea Mapili is a Filipinx-Canadian playwright, choreographer, dancer, and Registered Somatic Movement Educator based in Toronto. She is a graduate of the Tamalpa Institute's movement-based expressive arts therapy and education program and holds a Bachelor of Science degree in Biology from the University of Western Ontario.

Byron Abalos is a Filipino-Canadian playwright, actor, and producer from Toronto. He earned a BFA in Theatre Acting from Ryerson University, and was an inaugural Bob Curry Fellow at Second City.