Kleptomaniacs: The First Ever Rap Musical


Who’s the real epitome of the word “kleptomaniac,” the poorest desperate people who only wants their needs to be filled up or the people who has the power in the position that secretly pocketing the money pegged for the growth of the nation? 

Tanghalang Pilipino has just opened its 28th season with the story that inspired by the songs of Gloc-9 and more specifically related to the Napoles pork-barrel scandal – corruption.

Last Friday night, July 11, I was able to witnessed the premier of  Kleptomaniacs, the Tanghalang Pilipino’s season opener  at Cultural Center of the Philippines. They excently fulfilled their promised to be the first rap musical. They perfomed originally written rap and fliptop from beginning to end. All songs are in the form of the rap song and all dialogue happen like a fliptop battle. 

It is a production that takes a local hiphop culture intertwines to the story of a community: highlighting the simple dreams of a poor young man, Tabo who clings on purity of his love for his beloved to keep him afloat the murky ocean of poverty and dejection.


I remember same thing happened in the past that seems a depiction of the plot of the show – the earthquake struck in Cebu, Bohol and other some parts of Visayas region, and followed by the hit of super Typhoon Yolanda that devasted Tacloban. The question evolves on today’s status of the victims. Do they both received enough financial help from the government? Are we sure there are no hidden agendas in building projects for them?

Kleptomaniacs reflects the painful reality in our society. In between the lines, the story simply tackles the causes and effects of poverty in the country. Some of characters’ decisions result to a consequence that has a domino effect.

Meanwhile, the cast showcases an exceptional talent in justifying their role. Leading the cast are Nicco Manalo as Tabo (son of the comedian, Jose Manalo), Thea Yraztorza as Vicky, the love interest of Tabo, and youngest among them, Micko Laurente as Butchoy, the younger brother of Tabo who plays a distinctive part in the story. Other cast are members of Tanghalang Pilipino’s Actors Company.






with the cast and director of “Kleptomaniacs”

Layeta Bucoy’s Kleptomaniacs runs until July 27, 2014, at the Tanghalang Aurelio Tolentino of the Cultural Center of the Philippines. It is directed by Tuxqs Rutaquio, composition and arrangement by Jose Carlo L. Frios and Nina Virgin, musical direction and co-­‐arrangement by Jed Caballero Balsamo, choreography by  Nestee Mamaril Gamilla, costume design by James Reyes, and lighting design by John Batalla.

For show buyers and ticket inquiries, call 8321125 locals 1620-21, 2183791, 0917-7500107, 0918-9593949; or TicketWorld at 8919999.) 

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