Monday, September 24, 2007


Now, here's a bit of good news: Mayor Alfredo Lim has issued a statement on Saturday saying that "it is high time that the city government revive efforts to restore the old Metropolitan Theater to its old grandeur."

Moreover, the mayor announced the creation of a six-man committee that will study the efforts, to be co-chaired by former Kapisanan ng mga Artista ng Pelikulang Pilipino (KAPP) head German Moreno (otherwise known as Kuya Germs) and Lim’s chief-of-staff, Ric de Guzman. Manila Vice Mayor Isko Moreno, on the other hand, will be its vice chairman, while Councilor Edward Maceda, Laguna Rep. Dan Fernandez and historian Ambeth Ocampo its members.

And although the theater is owned by the Government Service Insurance System (GSIS), the Manila City government, according to Lim, is willing to ask big companies to lend financial support to the project.

The 'Manila Metropolitan Theatre, designed by Juan M. de Guzman Arellano, was built in 1935. The sculptures in its façade and in the lobby were created by Francesco Riccardo Monti, an Italian sculptor who lived in Manila from 1930 until his death in 1958. The theater was completely destroyed during the Battle of Manila in 1945, but was reconstructed after the war. Unfortunately, it fell into decay after years of neglect and disuse, but was restored and reopened to the public. It was eventually closed in 1996.

The current on-going renovation
of this landmark theater is funded by a P50 million grant from the National Commission on the Arts and Culture, and is overseen by Richard Tuason-Sanchez Bautista, NCCA architect-in-residence.


Related link: The Conservation of The Metropolitan Theater


posted by Señor Enrique at 6:19 AM


Blogger pusa said...

this is really good news!

September 24, 2007 10:20 AM  

Blogger ScroochChronicles said...

Yes!! Mr. Mayor has finally come up with a good project. I still remember the glory of the Met :)

September 24, 2007 11:05 AM  

Blogger Watergirl said...

German Moreno? Is it just my memory of his show or does the idea of Kuya Germs heading a task force to fix the Met a bit incongruous? I don't know if his background is in art restoration or architecture or history, so I will hope that it's not just a political junket (ie, money down the drain).

Can Mayor Lim please remove the ugly streetlights along Roxas too? And have that task force add aesthetic illumination to their list of to dos?

September 24, 2007 11:24 AM  

Blogger Señor Enrique said...

And exciting, too, Pusa! Now with the mayor's attention and interest, hopefully, the project will receive its much needed funding to sustain its compl;ete renovation efforts, as well as for its maintenance.

September 24, 2007 11:55 AM  

Blogger Señor Enrique said...

That's right Scrooch :)

Hey, wait a minute ... aren't you supposed to be preoccupied with The Met at Lincoln Center, Carnegie Hall or Madison Square Garden instead? Hehehe!

September 24, 2007 11:57 AM  

Blogger ScroochChronicles said...'re absolutely right. I'm actually going tomorrow. I haven't seen the Cloisters yet so that's first on the agenda. BTW, takot ako sa Carmine's. Mukhang sosi :)

September 24, 2007 12:10 PM  

Blogger Señor Enrique said...

No, hindi sosi yon, maganda lang kasi sa Times Square youn.

Kung gusto mo, go to their main branch on Broadway at 94th Street when returning from the Cloisters. Mas homy and ambience nito.

Just ask anyone in the area where it is and they'll point you to its exact location. And get the pasta! Hehehe!

September 24, 2007 1:03 PM  

Blogger Señor Enrique said...

Hi MTan! Have no idea why Kuya Germs was selected, but I'm sure he attained a certain degree of influence through the years. If anything, he may be able to attract the interests of theater producers to stage their shows at the Met instead of PICC.

Those futuristic street lights along Roxas Blvd are much preferable than no lights at all. It does take some time getting used to them, though. Quite futuristic ... hehehe!

September 24, 2007 1:08 PM  

Anonymous Anonymous said...

Sa aking palagay, kaya si Kuya Germs ang napili para mamuno ng pagsasaayos ng Metropolitan Theater, ay sa dahilang isa siya sa mga artista noong araw na "lumaki" sa teatrong ito.

Sa madaling salita, naniniwala ang mga otoridad na may tunay na pagmamalasakit si Kuya Germs sa teatrong ito, kaya nakasisigurong ibubuhos niya ang kanyang panahon at pagmamahal sa pagpapanumbalik ng Met.


September 24, 2007 4:42 PM  

Blogger Señor Enrique said...

Got a valid point there, Rhoda. I tend to agree with you because choosing someone to head up that committee is no easy matter.

Did you know that Kuya Germs started at Clover Theater as a janitor and tenaciously worked his way up to fame and fortune? Quite a story that man has. Kahanga-hanga istorya ng buhay niya :)

September 24, 2007 5:24 PM  

Blogger Nashei said...

Good! i always get off the bus in lawton and whenever i see Met i cant help but mentally shake my head because of the condition of it. i cant wait to see it restore to its former glory.

September 24, 2007 6:57 PM  

Anonymous Anonymous said...

Good news for a change rather than demolishing they've opted to renovate a landmark that's part and parcel of the history of Manila.

September 24, 2007 7:01 PM  

Blogger Señor Enrique said...

Actually, Nashel, there's ongoing renovations in full swing, but Lim's participation will ensure its full renovation and the required maintenance.

Hopefully, someday, when completely reopened with regularly scheduled shows, this theater will help enhance the entire area that surrounds it as it used to.

September 24, 2007 7:23 PM  

Blogger Señor Enrique said...

This one is truly worth saving and reviving, BW. We have already lost too many of our architectural gems :(

Hopefully, this theater will also be opened and completely operational when you come home for a visit next year.

September 24, 2007 7:25 PM  

Blogger Metropulis said...

Bravo Alfredo!

September 24, 2007 9:44 PM  

Blogger Señor Enrique said...

And let's also hope that his committee will do a great job, Metropulis.

September 25, 2007 5:04 AM  

Blogger Sidney said...

Indeed, good news!

September 25, 2007 9:08 PM  

Blogger Señor Enrique said...

Indeed, it is, Sidney. Better we plan on attending Ivan's future walking tours wgicg includes this theater!

September 26, 2007 7:27 AM  

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Life in Manila as observed by a former New Yorker who with a laptop and camera has reinvented himself as a storyteller. Winner of the PHILIPPINE BLOG AWARDS: Best Photo Blog in 2007 and three Best Single Post awards in 2008.


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