The Manila Metropolitan Theater (MET) is set to reopen its doors to the public in December.
According to Mariz Umali’s “24 Oras” report, Tuesday, along with the restoration of the theater, its original and unique design was preserved as well.
This includes the carvings of Filipino fruits, plants, and animals on the theatre’s ceiling.
National Commission for Culture and the Arts Chair Arsenio “Nick” Lizaso said the reopening symbolized the return of Philippine theatre.
“The reopening of the Metropolitan Theater will give the enthusiasm of Philippine theatre back. It’ll showcase zarzuela and vaudeville, which the millennials haven’t seen,” he said in Filipino.
Having survived tumultuous times in Philippine history, including being partially destroyed during the World War II, the MET was now on its “fifth life,” said Lizaso.
“It opened and closed. It got old and was occupied by city dwellers,” he said.
According to the chairman, the NCCA spent millions of pesos to buy the MET from the Government Service insurance System (GSIS) and have it renovated.
Apart from holding theater plays, the MET will also play movies once it opens in December.
To start the opening, it will house “Gawad Parangal for Outstanding Manilans” to celebrate Manila City’s 450th anniversary this month.
A national historical landmark and cultural treasure, the MET was designed by architect Juan Arellano and was inaugurated in 1931.
Although there were restoration plans in 1978, the theater closed down again in 1996. – Franchesca Viernes/RC, GMA News