With the success of OPM-inspired musicals such as Rak of Aegis and Sa Wakas, people had only this to say when they found out that an APO-inspired musical was coming out: It’s about time!
Eto na! Musikal nAPO! features the music of the APO Hiking Society, an iconic Filipino musical group which was often referred to as “The Beatles of the Philippines”. The trio of Jim Paredes, Danny Javier, and Boboy Garovillo released 27 albums during their careers. So timeless was their music that two tribute albums were released, with their songs performed by local artists who look up to them as pillars of OPM history.
Joining the guests for the musical’s preview night were Jim Paredes and Boboy Garovillo. What were their sentiments after witnessing their music and their story reimagined in another genre for another generation?
“Ecstatic, surprised, and delighted,” said Jim, after watching the show. This was actually the first time he saw the musical in its entirety, and he was pleasantly surprised by how it turned out. “I saw some rehearsals, patigil-tigil, wala pang orchestra. And now, I saw it, and I’m amazed at the utilization of the songs. Some songs I never thought would match together in a mash-up, but they did! Some songs were situated so uniquely. I thought the cast was wonderful. Walang character na tinapon. Walang patapon, walang laylay.”
Boboy shared the same sentiments. “I feel great. It was an awesome show, well-written. I’m so happy kasi nabuhayan ‘yung mga kanta namin ulit.”
Like Jim, Boboy was glad with how the musical was able to give their songs another angle, another story. “You have to watch the musical. Kasi if you watch the musical, there’s a different story to the songs. You know the song, and you have your own story in your mind. But when you see the musical, it’s a different story, and the story will stay with you. So the next time you hear the song, it’s a different song to you, gano’n ang mangyayari.”
“The APO, when we used to do concerts, isa lang ang aming joy: when people get out in the lobby with smiling faces and talking about what was their favorite part,” Boboy shared. Seeing that longed-for reaction in the audience at the end of the show is testament to a job well done.
“I want them to feel that the soundtrack of their life was sung,” said Jim. “Especially for the older ones. They got all the references to the ’70s jokes – EDSA, Highway 54, Love Bus – lahat, nakuha nilang lahat. Stuff like that, it was a spark. Ang lakas ng reaksyon. I want them to feel good.
“This is part of our legacy. I’m glad we did APO,“ said Jim. For both men, Eto na! Musikal nAPO! ensures that all the hard work they did years ago will be remembered and, hopefully, go down in history long after they have gone. “If our songs lasted for 30 years or 40 years, maybe this musical will carry it on to another 30,” said Boboy. “Beyond our life.”
Eto Na! Musical nAPO! will run from August 3 to 26 at the Maybank Performing Arts Center in BGC, Taguig.