A FACULTY of Arts and Letters alumna’s tender drama that was a barely disguised tribute to her deceased grandmother became one of the “untried, untested, and unpublished” one-act plays that were mounted during the 10th Virgin Labfest (VLF) at the Cultural Center of the Philippines, June 25 to July 6.

Joanna Katanyag, a Journalism graduate and former artistic director of Artistang Artlets, said her play, Betang, was based on her own grandmother’s experiences. The title character is named in fact after her grandma.

The story revolves around an old woman gracefully waiting for her death in a garage during the ungodly hours of the morning.

“I tried writing about it before but it never came about. When Betang died last February, I wanted to preserve her memory so I thought of continuing the script,” Katanyag said.

From 167 entries sent this year, 12 plays made the final cut, said festival director Tuxqs Rutaquio.

Sa Pagitan ng Dalawang Kahong Liham, written by Layeta Bucoy, tells the story of two gay lovers on the brink of a break-up.

Raymund Reyes’s Ang Naghihingalo is about Indoy, an ice cream vendor who needs money for his surgery after a ruptured aneurysm. His children are forced to reunite but in the process, old grudges and resentments are resurrected.

Kevin Tabora’s Mapagbirong Haplos is about the bitter relationship between a woman and her ex-convict father.

Meanwhile, Ang Goldfish ni Prof. Dimaandal by Eljay Deldoc is a comedy about the “murder “of a goldfish pet owned by cranky science teacher who's about to retire.

VLF’s Revisited program once again remounted a number of plays from the previous years.

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Liza Magtoto’s Isang Daan explores the conflict between two balikbayan Filipinos fighting together to save a street named after their descendant, a Katipunan revolutionary, from being turned into a highway by government.

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