Appreciation Please: The Theatre Arts Edition

We live in a country where the Theatre Arts is not exactly an ideal choice of course to take in college. We only have a few schools that offer Theatre Arts as a course. This is so because we have this culture, or rather mindset, that it is not worth it because it has little pay; unlike being a doctor or a lawyer. Doctors and lawyers are the ideal jobs that the most Filipino parents would want their kids to have. This is unfair because people do not give the appreciation to this type of Art deserves. People do not understand how hard it is to be part of the theatre and fulfilling it could be. Theatre should be more appreciated for the time and effort the people put in it.


Theatre Actors (or even actors in general) have as much stamina and endurance, or even more, than athletes. I remember when I was younger I was told actors are athletes. Now that I am taking AB Theatre Arts, I fully understand what that statement meant. Actors (including dancers and singers) go through an extensive training regime to be able to do at least 2-3 per day. They have not only to train physically but also mentally and emotionally. Theatre Actors have to train themselves mentally because there is a lot of thinking on your feet work. They also train themselves emotionally because of all the shoes they have to fill in when they step into another character.


If Theatre Actors are the athletes, I would say that the Production side of Theatre is the group of Doctors, Lawyers, Engineers, Architects, Designers and Bank Accountants. They are basically the Avengers of Theatre. I feel like this side of Theatre is not so recognized by the general public. The people see and appreciate the output, yes, but they do not take time to search or find out who created the visuals of the play. But those are the Artistic Department and Technical Department only. What about the Production Department? They are composed of the Stage Managers, Company Manager, Production Manager and the Crew. This part of the Production side of theatre is, in my opinion, the most underappreciated team. Little do people know that without them there DEFINITELY won’t be anything to put up on stage.


Do you see now why the people in the Theatre Industry should be appreciated more? Why we should give them the respect and awe they deserve?


Theatre Arts is more work than what people give it credit for. It is the art of story telling through body movements, facial expressions and dialogue. Sure, it does not pay much, but it gives you a sense of fulfillment because stories speak volumes. This kind of art’s main goal is to send a real message through a physicalized story presentation.


Doctors and Lawyers are overrated. Having a secure future with money in your hands is overrated. It is time for an adventure. I believe it is time to give the spotlight to the underappreciated. It is time for the underdogs to take the stage this twenty-first century.


Students and Coffee: A Love Story

The Encounter


Every love story starts with the encounter, a meeting, a first impression. This is no different. It starts off with Innocence. She steps into his domain, shocked by the rush of cold air and the robust smell of coffee beans. She looks around this unknown world of Coffee. Coffee sees her, and is instantly enticed by her innocence to his world. Dressed as a barista, Coffee walked to where she was and smiled at her. Coffee offered her a cup.


She saw Coffee smile, and her heart started racing as he gave her a cup. She took it as delicately as she could and sipped. Her eyes widened, her hands started to shake. She felt a rush of energy go through her body. She gave the cup back and smiled her biggest smile at Coffee.


Coffee watched her expression as she took a sip. He had a rush as he watched her expression change from tiredness to happiness and satisfaction in an instant. He thought to himself, “This is just the mild drink. Amazing how she is so happy already with this little cup.”


He hasn’t said anything and her heart started to sink. She thought that her wild smile freaked him out so she tried to go back to a poker face. But the problem is she couldn’t. Her nerves are too jumpy and shaky. Her whole being was being flooded with adrenaline.


Coffee realized he hasn’t said anything. “Hello. Do you want another one?”


“Yes.” She said almost immediately.


And just like that, her innocence to his world was gone. And Coffee smiled at the thought of that.


The Honeymoon Phase


In every love story, the couple would always go through a honeymoon phase. This is completely normal and always temporary. In this love story, there is no difference.


She would visit him everyday and stay with him all night long. He keeps giving her stronger and stronger drinks because she would always ask for more. Coffee would watch, as she would shake her leg and try to write her papers. She could barely concentrate because he is always around, and his smell entices her as much as it did during the first day they met.


Coffee is still enticed by they way his drinks affected her. Her innocence was definitely gone. And it amused him.


The Real Stuff


After every honeymoon phase, the relationship officially starts. Fights become more than petty pillow fights. Being together tends to become boring, stagnant. And of course, Jealousy takes over the tiniest things.


She felt the jealousy part. Every time she would prefer a different drink from Coffee’s, he would feel abandoned and mad. She would have to sip Coffee’s drink just so he would stop screaming.


Coffee felt the stagnant part. She does not get as excited as she used to when he would give her the drink. She would even fall asleep, even if they were talking to each other. You could say she has become a Sleeping Beauty.


The End


She and Coffee never thought they would make it out of that rough patch. But eventually they did.


And like most love stories, this is not over. However, for him it is over. This is an infinite time loop for Coffee. Because each girl or boy always, one way or another, stops drinking and he would have to wait for another innocent one to invite in.


But he remembers each and every one of his loves.







One in a Million

“I could hear my heart beating. “I could hear everyone’s heart. “I could hear the human noise we sat there making. “Not one of us moved. “Not even when the room went dark. ” And I think that that’s what writing is. It’s listening for that beating heart, and when we hear it, it’s our job to decipher it to the best of our abilities. – Bill Borgens, Stuck In Love.

Every person has a story. But not every person tells it. They tend to hide it in the scars and the wounds on their bodies and on their hearts. It is our job, as writers, to decipher each scar, each wound, as precisely as possible. Then we share the stories to the world, for everyone to see the beauty of reality masked as a fantasy. People think that writers play “make believe” when they write, but in reality we are the mediums of fantasy and reality. We connect them together to form a story that is acceptable to entertain the human mind. Every person has a story. And I believe that When In Manila is able to decipher everyone’s story with justice.


Hello, I am Cecilia “Lia” M. de Jesus. I initially studied at University of Santo Tomas (UST) as a BS Psychology Major but shifted and now I am happily taking up AB Theatre Arts at Meridian International (MINT) College. I love acting, singing and dancing – theatre in general. In theatre, I have both been on the performing side and the production side of it. I enjoy both sides equally. I also love reading and writing. I usually write spoken word poetry, but I am practicing my skills in writing short stories and theatrical scripts. I started writing almost the same time I started my love for reading. I’ve written a lot since then, some works I am proud of, some I believe I need to work on, and some that are still left unfinished. I usually write to tell the stories of my experiences and of my advocacies.


I am a very passionate advocate for Mental Health Awareness. I am actually the Secretary for Internal Affairs in Youth for Mental Health Coalition, Inc. To be transparent, I have been diagnosed with a Mental Illness. Going through finding out about my condition was a big obstacle for me. This is so because I wasn’t even aware that Mental Health was part of health. This is why I am an advocate for Mental Health Awareness. I do not want people to go through the difficulty of accepting and understanding the fact that there is such a thing as Mental Health. Besides Mental Health, I also advocate for SOGIE Equality (equal rights for the LGBT++ community).


As I said earlier, every person has a story. This is just a part of mine, one in a million stories that I can share. I know that I will not be writing my story on your website, but I would like to write my story through someone else’s. I believe When In Manila is full of people who express their story through the articles they write on their site. This is something When In Manila and I have in common. We both write our stories through other’s stories. And we would both want to share it to the world not for profit, but because it is what writers do. This is why I think I am a good fit to work for When In Manila.