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A PROPOSED NEW MANILA METROPOLITAN

Defining the Filipino Cultural Identity: Filipino Avant Garde in Performing Arts Theater

CHAPTER1. INTRODUCTION
1.1 INTRODUCTION

The Manila Metropolitan Theater is one of the grandest buildings built during
the American Colonial Period (1901-1940) and it is the greatest contribution of Filipinos in
the world of Art Deco. It is a beautiful jewel of modernistic architecture, the synthesis that
came out of local Filipino forms and the international Art Deco style that was famous
during that era.

The theater launched the life works of Philippine National Artists in


architecture, visual arts, music, dance and literature, who dominated Philippine cultural
history. It was relegated to obsolescence after the structural damage of the Second World
War and the meteoric popularity of television, movies and the contemporary cyberspace
media.The Philippine government has prioritized the theater’s restoration because of its
prominence as an imposing landmark with high aesthetic and architectural significance in
the heart of Manila city. This two part study develops the conservation management plan
and the feasibility study to make the theater operational and conserve the meaning of the
theater for future generations.

The MET as it is fondly called is one of Manila’s outstanding landmarks


situated in a lot area of 7, 633.10 square meters in the northern end of the Mehan Garden
(1994, Buenaventura). It is bounded in the north by the Quezon Bridge, in the north east by
the LRT Central Station, in the east by the Manila City Hall, in the west by the Manila Park
and Ride terminal and in the north west by the MacArthur Bridge. Its location is part of the
Parian area during the Spanish Colonial period; hence, its very site is undoubtedly
significant. The early 1920’s excavation of O.H Beyer has already proven that true as that
archeological excavation yielded noteworthy cultural materials from the 15 th –
16 Centuries.
th

According to its architect, Juan Arellano, the structure was inspired by the
phrase “on the wings of song”. True enough, its façade attests well to that statement. It is
topped by a segmental arch, each segment defined by tapering pinnacles that resembles
oriental stupas, two identical wings, each bordered horizontally by a frieze with stylized
shell patterns with their inner rounded corners radiant with tile mosaic in Javanese
patterns framing the main façade. As well, a magnificent stained glass window with stylized
floral pattern of green, blue, purple and yellow serves as the focal point of the Met’s façade.

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MANUEL L. QUEZON UNIVERSITY
ARCHITECTURAL DESIGN 9
A PROPOSED NEW MANILA METROPOLITAN
Defining the Filipino Cultural Identity: Filipino Avant Garde in Performing Arts Theater

Below this glass window is the main entrance, divided into three bays that are each shaded
with stylized canopies. The rough textured exterior walls in soft pastel colors compliment
the structures grandiose well. Bas reliefs and stylized sculptures appear as added accents to
the Met’s façade.

The Met has a seating capacity of 1670 after its original 1930’s completion
which was later increased to 1709 after its 1978 restoration. It reached its peak during the
Japanese Occupation where it became a Japanese propaganda center where major cultural
activities were held. The 1945 Battle of Manila left the Met in ruins as it was not spared
from the heavy bombing of the American armed forces. The roof was completely obliterated
while the walls withstood the shelling and bombing.

After its declaration in 1973 as a National Landmark PD 260, it was


reconstructed and reopened to the public in 1978. The theatre was consequently closed
down in 1996 following a dispute of its ownership and management between the
Government Service Insurance System (GSIS) and the City of Manila. This dispute was
finally resolved in 2000 with the ownership granted to GSIS and with the City of Manila as
the manager. In 2002, funding for the restoration of the Met was started and in 2004 a
tripartite agreement among GSIS, City government of Manila and the National Commission
for Culture and the Arts (NCCA) was signed which formally started a work action plan for
the restoration of the theatre.

The west wing rehabilitation of the theatre as a satellite office of the GSIS was
completed in 2003. However, as the GSIS does not have the mandate to restore the theater
for cultural purposes, the restoration work was held for the succeeding years. The actual
restoration work was started in 2007, beginning with the repair of the theatre’s roof and
the second phase that includes utility systems work is already on going.

However, since the restoration has recently started, a large part of the Met’s
building structure is still in poor condition as evidenced in the Theater’s Damage
Assessment Schedule for 200 Rooms with badly damaged roof, broken glass windows,
detached doors, quickly deteriorating wooden floors and other parts slowly but continually
disintegrating. The long damaged, if not entirely open, roofing has led to water leakage,
seepage and flooding in most areas of the theatre. Moisture and humidity have bred
termites and other insects all over the interior which contributes greatly to its fast
deterioration. Lastly, heavy pollution due to choked traffic directly in front of the structure
lead to the accumulation of thick soot on the exterior walls and decorations of the building.
With the recent changing of leadership bringing Mayor Alfredo Lim at the helm of the City
of Manila, the Met has renewed hope of finally being renovated and revived to its old glory.

The Metropolitan Theater proposal was first drafted in 1924 but it was only
on December 10, 1931when the Manila Metropolitan Theater was established. The art-deco
design of the building, a very famous design in North America and Europe, was made by
Juan M. Arellano with his brother Arcadio Arellano and American architectural planner
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MANUEL L. QUEZON UNIVERSITY
ARCHITECTURAL DESIGN 9
A PROPOSED NEW MANILA METROPOLITAN
Defining the Filipino Cultural Identity: Filipino Avant Garde in Performing Arts Theater

Daniel Burnham. The sculptures in the facade of the theater were from an Italian Sculptor
named Riccardo Monti.
Filipino artist Isabelo Tampingco decorated the walls and interior surfaces of
the lobby and theNational Artist for Painting Fernando Amorsolo gave more life to the
lobby through two of its paintingnamely “The Dance” and “History of Music”. Its stained
glasses where contracted with the famous Kraut Art Glass and the proscenium was by the
House of Pre-cast Company. Apart from the theater, the building also had a ballroom with
chandelier from Europe, restaurants, offices, and shops, dressing rooms, verandas and
interior gardens. The Met seated 1,670 people: 846 in the orchestra, 116 in the lodge and
708 in the balcony.

It was during the World War II when Manila, the “Pearl of the Orient”, got
devastated because of the Battle of Manila. The gun battles and bombings killed many
civilians and destructed many famous infrastructures and that include the Met. Its
foundation stood still only destructing its roofs. It was left uncared until it became an ice
cream parlor, boxing arena, garage, motel, gay club and eventually a squatter’s area of 50 to
70 families. In 1978, Former First Lady Imelda Marcos, being inclined in the arts at that
time, loaned to Government Services Insurance System (GSIS) and ordered for the
restoration of the theater.
They were able to return the Manila Metropolitan Theater’s old glory and
brought it back to its zenith. Ms. Conchita Sunico was then assigned to be the theater’s
director. Later on, many talents were discovered like Pops Fernandez, Leo Valdez, Isay
Alvarez and Beverly Salviejo. Many other artists who then became very popular movie and
television superstars like Dolphy, the Reycard Duet, Pugo and Tugo and Elizabeth Ramsay
performed in the infamous theater. It was also a host for Vilma Santos’ very popular variety
show in the 1980’s. The Met also housed Manila Symphony, a gallery of Philippine costumes
and two rare grand pianos.
The Metropolitan was really able to bring back to its old glory. World class
performers also joined the number of presentations done in the Met. It was then called
“Pearl of the Orient” because it became a very popular site for many shows of cultures from
around the world. In 1986, the Marcoses were driven away through people power. Because
of that, Met’s administration was changed. Gemma CruzAraneta, who was then the Tourism
Secretary, assigned Nenita Manzano to lead Metropolitan
Theater’s operations. But in 1996, disputes between Met’s ownership arose between GSIS
and the City Government of Manila.
This caused for the operation of the theater to shut down. The Supreme Court
ordered that no organization should benefit from the theater until the investigation was
finished. Director Manzano gave Gemma Cruz-Araneta a complete set of plans which she
turned over to the National Commission for Culture and the Arts. The stop in the operation

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MANUEL L. QUEZON UNIVERSITY
ARCHITECTURAL DESIGN 9
A PROPOSED NEW MANILA METROPOLITAN
Defining the Filipino Cultural Identity: Filipino Avant Garde in Performing Arts Theater

left the building abandoned. Several typhoons that hit the Philippines affected the theater.
The roof was damaged that caused water leaks. The Bagyong Rosing hit Manila and
destructed the Met’s roofing causing its interior to be deteriorated. The Met then fell into
decay.
As of now, the roofs were retouched and these alone already cost them 20
million. According toEngineer Walfrido Novero Jr. , there are several phases that Met had
undergone. Phases 1 to 3 are already done. They have already used 50 million of the budget
for these phases which covered the renovation of the roofs and roofing systems, and a part
of the Theater stage. Currently, they are working on Phase 4 which covers the rest of the
Theater stage and the electrical parts of Met. Estimated 90% of Phase 4 is already done,
however, they cannot continue to Phase 5 of the restoration because of the budget
constraints.
Phase 5 must cover the restoration of the audience area, the orchestra and
the designing of Met. On the other hand, more or less 36% of Metropolitan Theater is
already renovated according to Engineer Novero. However, according to Architect
Valenzuela of the City Government of Manila, it is not only the budget that impedes the
renovation; another constraint is the theater’s historical and art value. The sensitivity of the
building itself makes it hard for them to reconstruct it, since they are into the preservation
of the theater’s art value.
Nevertheless, the sensitivity of the Art Deco design is just secondary to their
main problem which is the budget. These improvements were made possible through the
steps done for Met before. The efforts began in the year 2004, when the years of argument
about ownership and management were settled to end all disputes. The Government
Service Insurance System (referred to as the Owner), National Commission for Culture and
the Arts (referred to as the NCCA) and the City of Manila (referred to as the Usufructuary)
signed a Tripartite Agreement.
The GSIS, an institution with the mandate of providing social security for
government employees, is the owner of Manila Metropolitan Theater. With the massive
deterioration of the facilities of Met, it also needs an immense rehabilitation which the GSIS
cannot fully provide since it is not their primary mandate as an institution to operate,
maintain and preserve Met. This then requires the participation of NCCA and Met’s
usufructuary. The City of Manila was given the right of usufruct over Met since they have
the commitment of enhancing and preserving Met’s physical structure and cultural and
historical significance.
NCCA, on the other hand, has the mandate of preserving and promoting
national cultural heritage. With this, President Gloria Macapagal Arroyo directed them to
grant Met 50 million pesos worth of Theater equipment and facilities for the partial
rehabilitation on Met. This then makes the City of Manila the lead implementer of the
conservation and rehabilitation of Met, GSIS as the owner and the NCCA as the fund

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MANUEL L. QUEZON UNIVERSITY
ARCHITECTURAL DESIGN 9
A PROPOSED NEW MANILA METROPOLITAN
Defining the Filipino Cultural Identity: Filipino Avant Garde in Performing Arts Theater

provider. Aside from the institutions who signed in the tripartite agreement, there is
another team formed by Manila Mayor Alfredo Lim who are tapped to lead the restoration
of Met.
This committee is composed of: German Moreno, a famous host, actor and
talent manager who is the former president of Kapisananng mga Artistang Pelikulang
Pilipino KAPP, as the chairman; Ric de Guzman, Mayor Lim’s chief of staff, as the co-
chairman; Isko Moreno, Manila vice-mayor and an actor, as the vice-chairman; Edward
Maceda, councilor of the fourth district of Manila; Ambeth Ocampo,
National Historical Institute and NCCA chairman; and Dan Fernandez, Laguna
Congressman and a Manila resident. This team is tasked to study the efforts done for the
restoration of the Manila Metropolitan Theater. Based on the planning done by the
members of the tripartite agreement, the restoration will need 300 million to attain its old
beauty. Also, they need a 10 million annual budget to fully implement its artistic objectives
and continue normal theater operation. It still needs to collect millions and trust fun Mr.
German Moreno, Mayor Alfredo Lim, Vice Mayor Isko Moreno, Ms. Gemma Cruz-Araneta
and the NCCA. Except the 50 million pesos allotted by the NCCA as mandated by PGMA for
the restoration of the Manila Metropolitan Theater, the additional 50 million pesos came
from different individuals and organizations.
Mr. German Moreno wrote letters to them asking donations for new chairs for
the main theater. Other than Save the Met Project, there are no more efforts done for the
restoration of the Manila Metropolitan Theater. This study will be focusing on the
possibility of encouraging corporate sponsors from several companies who are capable of
providing financial assistance for the Manila Metropolitan
Theater According to an article in Philippine Star in 2007, written by Dot Ramos Balasbas-
Gancayco: “… initial show of support is absolutely encouraging but we certainly need
more.We need private individuals and companies who truly care for the Met. We need
donations and pledges. We need honest, incorruptible individuals who would see to it that
the funds raised would be used solely for the Met’s rehabilitation. We need the City of
Manila to stay true to its commitment to take charge of the enhancement and improvement
not only of the Met’s physical structure but its cultural significance. We need all government
agencies concerned to stop bickering and work harmoniously for the good of the people.
When Manila Metropolitan Theater was built, the venture was a cooperative
effort between the city government who would provide the land and the Manilans most
especially the businessman who would provide the capital as well as the expertise. The
Metropolitan Theater Foundation Inc. , the leader of the said project needed to raise a
million peso to finance it. Capitalists offered help but the company decided to involve the
public in the undertaking. After one year, the beginning of the construction was still not
materialized as the funds were insufficient to sustain it. So in December of 1929, the
Company started its fund- raising campaign. Corporate sectors plus the labor of different

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MANUEL L. QUEZON UNIVERSITY
ARCHITECTURAL DESIGN 9
A PROPOSED NEW MANILA METROPOLITAN
Defining the Filipino Cultural Identity: Filipino Avant Garde in Performing Arts Theater

artists shared their expertise for Met. Philippine International Corporation began selling
stocks to raise Met’s needed capital which is 1 Million pesos. The success of their fund
raising effort led now to the existence of the Grand Dame. If partnerships and sponsorship
became a very huge help for the establishment of the Manila Metropolitan Theater, it can
definitely be Met’s hope for this new venture of restoring the Met. The reason why the
researchers decided to study this topic is because of their awareness of the financial needs
of Metropolitan Theater.

However, they seem to notice that the effort of its owners, particularly the
members of the tripartite agreement which are NCCA, GSIS and the City Government of
Manila, in publicizing the restoration and the needs of Metropolitan Theater is insufficient
and must be improved. The researchers can see the possibility of having corporate
sponsorships to be able to restore the Met. The researchers are into publicizing the
restoration and the needs of Met to private sectors and corporate benefactors as a after its
soft opening last June 24, the celebration of Manila day, not much is heard about the
situation of the theater’s renovation.

The researchers believe that through this study, they would be able to help
the members of the tripartite agreement with their minimal efforts in order for them to
inform the possible corporate sponsors about the restoration of Met and its financial needs;
and to be able to persuade them to contribute in restoring Met through educating them
with the significance of Metropolitan Theater.

This study can be one of the stepping stones in the effort to restore the
Manila Metropolitan Theater.Through the content of this study specifically the Public
Relations Campaign, the theater will have an overview on how they can gather possible
sponsors and be able to persuade them to support the restoration of Metropolitan Theater.
Statement of the Problem This study aims to get the perception of selected companies on
the viability of Corporate Sponsorship in restoring the Manila Metropolitan

Theater as a Cultural Venue. Specifically, the researchers answered the following questions:

1. How aware are the selected


companies on Manila Metropolitan Theater’s historical / cultural significance? 2. How do
the selected companies perceive the role of Manila Metropolitan Theater as a Cultural
Venue? 3. How do the selected companies perceive the Manila Metropolitan Theater as
their possible Corporate Social
Responsibility initiative in terms of
1. The theater’s suitability to their company's mission & objectives

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MANUEL L. QUEZON UNIVERSITY
ARCHITECTURAL DESIGN 9
A PROPOSED NEW MANILA METROPOLITAN
Defining the Filipino Cultural Identity: Filipino Avant Garde in Performing Arts Theater

2. The theater’s impact to the society


3. The theater’s effect on their company’
4.What are their opinions and insights on the possibility of sponsorship of their company
to the Manila Metropolitan Theater?
5. What viable Public Relations campaign can be proposed to promote corporate
sponsorship to raise funds for the restoration of the Manila Metropolitan Theater?
Significance of the Study To the Mass Communication faculty and students. This study will
be a great help for the students and faculty because they can gather insights about Research
and Public Relations. This can be a reference for many future studies that will be made. To
GSIS, NCCA and the City Government of Manila.

Through this study, these three government institutions which are the
tripartite agreement members will be able to get the perception of possible private
company sponsors who can help them gather resources needed to restore the Met the
fastest way they can. With that, these public agencies do not have to squeeze in their limited
budget for restoring the theater.To other government departments.
Other departments of the government like the Department of Tourism will benefit to the
increase inthe foreign visitors if Met will be in zenith like it did before. And the success in
tourism can soon encourage foreign investors in the country. Manila Metropolitan Theater
may bring a domino effect from the preservation of the cultural heritage to the
development of the Philippine economy. To the Private Companies. This study can give
them opportunities of having a possible Corporate Social Responsibility through the Manila
Metropolitan

Theater’s restoration which will both benefit their company and the Manila
Met. To the Historians. This study can be a basis for their researches particularly regarding
the Manila Metropolitan Theater and the importance of preserving these cultural and
historical venues since it became a great part of Philippine history since 1930’s.
To the Art and Cultural community. This study can give them several inputs regarding the
Manila Metropolitan Theater’s role in Filipino culture and arts. In some ways, they will be
able to know how to help in the restoration of Met. .Public Relations Practitioners. PR
practitioners are responsible in promoting and publicizing establishments and institutions
through their proficiency on the subject. This study can serve as a motivation for those PR
practitioners in helping one very significant historical and cultural venue for arts and
theater performances. Future Researchers.

This study may serve as springboard for other researchers who may have
inclinations to theater and communication. The results of the study can be a basis for other
studies or make the research a reference for future research works. Scope and Limitations

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MANUEL L. QUEZON UNIVERSITY
ARCHITECTURAL DESIGN 9
A PROPOSED NEW MANILA METROPOLITAN
Defining the Filipino Cultural Identity: Filipino Avant Garde in Performing Arts Theater

This study will get the perception of possible corporate sponsors on their views on in
restoring the Manila Metropolitan Theater as Cultural venue. The variables of this study are
the perception of the selected companies, the restoration of Manila Metropolitan Theater,
and the possible corporate sponsorship in raising funds for Met. The research will only be
conducted within Metro Manila Area.
The interviewees would be a Public Relations Officer or a Communication
Officer or a Managerial Representative of a company under the following corporate sectors:
Manufacturing; Retail; Banking and Finance; Insurance and Pre-need; Pharmaceuticals;
Hospitality and Transportation; Automotives and Motors; Media and Entertainment;
Telecom and Services; Power, Oil mining and Exploration; Food and Restaurants However,
In the course of the study, the researchers will focus solely on the perception of the selected
companies on the viability of corporate sponsorship in restoring the Manila Metropolitan
Theater.Other aspects such as the Met’s problems on the architectural preservation of the
infrastructure and communication problems among the members of the tripartite
agreement will not be discussed. And though the researchers will focus on the gathering
funds for restoration of Met, budget allocation will not be thoroughly tackled since it was
said to be confidential.
This will discuss the review of related literature and studies regarding the Manila
Metropolitan Theater and other variables of this study. Also, this chapter would contain the
frameworks of this study and definition of the terms that will be used in the course of this
research
The Birth of Metropolitan Theater (1928-1931) The City of Manila in the mid
1920s realized the need to have a national theater. Despite the fact that the city already
have a number of theater houses like the Manila Grand Opera, Ideal, Majestic, Empire,
Savoy, Palace, and Lyric among others. With this, the Manila City Mayor Tomas Earnshaw
heed to the call, thus he made the first action. He also opened his office for suggestions on
possible names for the theater. A committee was then formed whose members were Rafael
Palma, Evelyn Thorstensen, Sacarias Pecas, and P. Pablo Balades.
And on September of 1928, a press release from Mayor’s Office announced that the
committee cameup with the name “Metropolitan Theater. ” From that same press release,
the Mayor extended his gratitude to the Manilans for their interest in the project. Primarily,
the plan was to use the theater for concerts and operas. It could also be for the projection of
moving pictures with sound.

In addition, restaurants, bar, ballroom, shops, and offices will be put in the
wings of the buildings. This enterprise was decided to be a cooperative endeavor between
the city government who would provide the land and the Manilans most especially the
businessman who would provide the capital as well as the expertise. The Metropolitan
Theater Company Inc. was assigned to be in charge in the project that was led by Horace B.

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MANUEL L. QUEZON UNIVERSITY
ARCHITECTURAL DESIGN 9
A PROPOSED NEW MANILA METROPOLITAN
Defining the Filipino Cultural Identity: Filipino Avant Garde in Performing Arts Theater

Pond. The company consists of board of directors from different communities. The
American community had H. B. Pond and J. L. Pierce. The Spaniards were represented by
Don Antonio Mellan and Enrique Zobel. French had
Leopoldo Kahn. And the Filipino members were Rafael Palma and Sen. Manuel Camus. Now,
the greatest obstacle was a million-peso money to finance the project. Foreign capitalists
offered help but the company decided to involve the public in the undertaking. After one
year, the beginning of the construction was still not materialized as the funds were
insufficient to sustain it. So in December of 1929, the Company started its fund- raising
campaign.

Finally, in February 1930, construction was started and finished in 1931. It


was in December of that same year when the Metropolitan Theater had its inauguration. It
was a labor of love. Themagnificence of the theater was caused by the help of the following:
Fernando Amorsolo for the murals; F. Ricardo Monti for the modern bronze sculptures,
Casa Villanueva for the marblework; Reynoso and Sons for the painting job; Estrella Del
Norte that has been an instrument to get the Steinway piano from Germany and the man
behind the architectural design of Met was Juan Arellano.

The Devastation of Metropolitan Theater Metropolitan Theater was stuck in


the middle of the inferno of independence. During the World War II, Americans ruthlessly
bombed the Theater, where Japanese soldiers follow. Nevertheless Met merely lost its roof,
with its walls withstood the violent bondage. After the war, Manilenos witnessed Met
mutating to devastating visage such as the Besa Boxing Arena, motels, gaybars, basketball
court, garage sale, and finally warehouse and, even the place, was full of squatters. The
theater was able to serve for 3 periods in the History of the Philippines.
Regardless of the country’s standing, whether it is at peace or in chaos, Filipinos pursue
and instill in their minds the importance of the country’s cultural heritage, therefore Met
survive and surpassed even hopeless moments of frustration. With such factors of trials,
Met is now a priceless treasure.

Looking at the last half-century, Met was a mere theater turned into a
National Landmark. Due to the evident significance of a National Theater, the Government
acted on the appeal of Mayor Earnshaw leased in 1929 to the MTC. In addition, it was also
used as the flower market of Mehan Gardens.
From Manila’s Philippine Magazine that determined readers to support the project in
Reviving Met for not doing so would cause only negligence at the end. With this, Philippine
International Corporation began selling stocks to raise Met’s needed capital which is 1
Million pesos. This also includes various chambers of commerce in Manila cooperated. The
Come Back of the Metropolitan Theater From the bloody path Met surpassed, there came

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MANUEL L. QUEZON UNIVERSITY
ARCHITECTURAL DESIGN 9
A PROPOSED NEW MANILA METROPOLITAN
Defining the Filipino Cultural Identity: Filipino Avant Garde in Performing Arts Theater

interests in burying and giving time and way for innovation.During the regime of first lady
and Metro Manila Governor Imelda Marcos, Met was restored to its preway grandeur. Met’s
next inauguration was on December 10, 1931, where the program included the brief life of
Met.

This was followed by outstanding performances that laid cultural galore and
the Filipino rising together with Philippines very own heritage to be proud of. In addition,
PD 684 was promulgated on the 15th of April 1975 urged even the youth, specifically, the
Kabataang Barangay organization to highlight and emphasize on the needs of the nation to
have a positive outcome. Through the generation’s participation and force, plans will be
extensively expanded with huge chances to grab Met as fully functional.
From such an activity, barangays would engage in the program and going on, mold matters
on
National concern. Also, this organization defined a 5-point National youth development
program:
1.)Keep the Out-of-School-Youth Program for socially integrated and economically
productive youth.
2.)This will serve as further guidance and proper orientation necessary for each role to be
functional in their respective organizations.
3.) Create awareness that will involve a sports development program
4.) Provoke the yearning to catch interest and the proud feeling of having the Philippine
Cultural Heritage.
5. ) Lastly, this will serve as a communication tool or an International Relations Program
and partake with foreign youth groups. For the following years, the Kabataang Barangay
organization was able to be active in their community and even through sponsorship; the
sense of nationalism was displayed. (From the Philippine Daily Inquirer, April 10, 1995 was
an article “Artists urge Ramos to stop Met Demolition” By Pablo A. Tapiman) President
Ramos was convinced of the plan from GSIS to demolish the Metropolitan Theater and
replace it with a shopping mall. However, Ramos was stopped by prominent names in the
show business, such as German Moreno.

During the term of Ex-Mayor Lito Atienza, there were articles published
promising plans to turn MET into the City’s Grand Ole Opry. (Philippine Daily Inquirer:
Metro, February 9, 2003 “Atienza wants to turn Met into city’s grand ole Opry”) Probe
Documentary “Sining ng Lipunan”- Manila Metropolitan Theater Probe is a television
program produced by the Probe Productions Inc. , an independent media production house
who created award-winning television shows like “The Probe Team”, “5 and Up” and “Che
Che Lazaro Presents”.

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MANUEL L. QUEZON UNIVERSITY
ARCHITECTURAL DESIGN 9
A PROPOSED NEW MANILA METROPOLITAN
Defining the Filipino Cultural Identity: Filipino Avant Garde in Performing Arts Theater

The TV show’s episode for the 27th of February of the year 2008 was societal
art. This was in line with 1the celebration of the National Arts Month. One of the topics was
the Manila Metropolitan Theater. The documentary tackled the short story of the Met and
the many experiences it went through the 76 years of its existence. It has also showed the
picture of Met’s situation in 2008. By that time, the 6-man committee formed by Manila
Mayor Alfredo Lim was still not meeting and any trace of improvement was still not visible
despite the plans drawn for its restoration.
The Manila Metropolitan Theater as a Philippine Heritage Structure and
Cultural Site According to the National Commission on Culture and the Arts, the Manila
Metropolitan Theater is one of the heritage structures and cultural sites which the Filipinos
can be proud of. In their documentation of these structures and sites, Met’s architectural
significance is outstanding. Met is an amalgam of Noveau and Art Deco Styles the Filipino
idiom with the use tropical plants and fruits as motifs. The Filipino architects who studied
in American architectural schools in 1905 were able to incorporate the new style into
Philippine Architecture.

The Met was envisioned to be a national theater that would house concerts,
operas and dramatic performances. This was designed by Juan Arellano who did an East-
West combination of architectural styles through weaving decorative elements into the Art
Deco style. This has been evident in the facade of the theater where tiles in geometric
patterns recall local banigs.

The brother of Juan Arellano, Arcadio Arellano, designed the interior


architectural designs of Met, incorporating wrought iron grille work that stylized Filipino
flora into geometric Art Deco and carved more flora into decorative wooden friezes.
Besides its existence for so many years, this architectural triumph of a Filipino also brought
historical and social value in Met. The fusion of Filipino and International design, adapting
the style of the two without losing is national identity is one achievement that the Manila
Metropolitan Theater will always remind the Filipinos. B. Research Literature Formation of
the Tripartite Agreement: Joining Hands for a Common Objective An editorial from the
People’s Journal in the 4th of August 1995 stated that the City Government of Manila and
the GSIS laid aside temporary legal obstacles in an effort to preserve a national patrimony.
As early as 1995, these two organizations already made a move to unite for a main
objective.
It was Mayor Alfredo Lim from the City Government of Manila and Cesar
Sarino, the GSIS president and general manager, who have agreed to sign a Memorandum of
Agreement that will pave the way for the restoration of the Met. Under the proposed
agreement, GSIS will shoulder he cost of therestoration work, not withstanding a pending
court case filed by the City Government of Manila to determine the rightful owner of the

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MANUEL L. QUEZON UNIVERSITY
ARCHITECTURAL DESIGN 9
A PROPOSED NEW MANILA METROPOLITAN
Defining the Filipino Cultural Identity: Filipino Avant Garde in Performing Arts Theater

Met. In 1996, the Supreme Court ordered for its closure not until Manila and GSIS has
settled the case. This then became a reason for the theater to be abandoned. But it was just
in 2004 when Mayor Lito Atienza, city government of Manila, Evelyn Pantig, president of
National Commission for Culture and Arts, and Winston Garcia, president of Government
Service Insurance System, all signed in the

Tripartite Agreement that gives them both the rights to decide over Met and
the responsibilities regarding the particular task assigned for each institution. The GSIS
already gained the ownership of the theater. City government of Manila, on the other hand,
has the responsibility of giving the initial budget for its restoration.
And lastly, the city government of Manila has the responsibility of leading the
restoration efforts. To administer the whole rehabilitation of the Manila Metropolitan
Theater, Manila Mayor Alfredo Lim created a 6-man team composed of the following:
German Moreno, a famous host, actor and talent 8/24/2018 A Study on the Viability of
Corporate Sponsorship for the Restoration of the Manila Metropolitan Theater manager
who the former resident of Kapisanan ng mga Artista ng Pelikulang Pilipino KAPP; Ric de
Guzman, Mayor Lim’s chief of staff; Isko Moreno, Manila vice-mayor and an actor; Edward
Maceda, councilor of the fourth district of Manila; Ambeth Ocampo, National Historical
Institute and NCCA chairwoman; and Dan Fernandez, Laguna Congressman and a Manila
resident. Manila Metropolitan Theater Curtain to Rise for PLM’s Magwayen The PLM’s
(Pamantasan ng Lungsod ng Maynila) theater group, the Magwayen Creative Scholars Guild
will be staging their grandest and most ambitious production to date, Ehipto in the Grand
Dame, the Manila Metropolitan Theater. This will be held on the February 12 and 13, 2011.
For the past 12 years, the guild has been performing at the university’s Justo
Albert Auditorium. But for its biggest project, a play that will try to stage few of the Bible’s
most majestic miracles, the members looked for a place that is more awe-inspiring. And
that is where the MET comes in. Just in time for the Manila City Government’s, NCCA’s and
GSIS’s effort to restore Met’s old beauty, PLM’s only theater group will bring their artistic
prowess to help save the Met. As of today, the team is still rehearsing and getting the “feel
“of performing in the historically and culturally rich venue. U. S. Ambassadors Fund for
Cultural Preservation In the U. S. they had created Ambassadors Fund for Cultural
Preservation which offered financial support to more than 640 cultural preservation
projects in over 100 countries. Their goal was towards the preservation of cultural heritage
worldwide which undoubtedly shows their passion for the cultural heritage of other
countries.
A wide range of projects to preserve cultural heritage was supported by the
Fund such as the restoration of historic buildings, assessment and conservation of museum
collections, archaeological site preservation, documentation of vanishing traditional craft

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techniques, improved storage conditions for archives and manuscripts, and documentation
of indigenous languages. Last year, U. S. ambassadors in over 90 countries worldwide
applied to the Fund on behalf of their partner institutions and organizations for assistance
in supporting indispensable cultural preservation needs.

1.2 BACKGROUND

The Manila Metropolitan Theatre, After more than eight decades of existence
a National Cultural Treasure, is undergoing a comprehensive conservation programme
under the aegis of the National Commission for Culture and the Arts (NCCA), the country’s
primary governmental agency tasked with the conservation, promotion, protection, and
development of our Filipino historical, cultural, and artistic heritage. As the only existing
Art Deco building of its scale and integrity in Asia, the Met is culturally significant in its
expression of a Filipinised style of ornamentation that melds indigenous icons and Art Deco
elements, creating a stylistic language that resonates with the Filipino.

Its historical significance lies in its connection to Filipino pioneers in the arts,
with many art and theatre personalities having launched their careers at the Met. Its scale,
as the largest theatre then constructed within the Philippines, led the Met to be accepted as
the country’s first “national theatre,” hosting cultural performances, social events, and
artistic endeavours. As a socio-civic structure, it has been integral in the development of
civic pride. Having been funded wholly through private solicitation of the Metropolitan
Theatre Company and the support of the Manilenñ os, the Met may be considered as a theatre
made by the people, for the people, and owned by the people.

The pioneer Filipino architect Juan M Arellano was commissioned by the


government to prepare the blueprints for the Met. He was sent to study the latest
technologies in theatre construction in the United States under the tutelage of Thomas W
Lamb, who also served as consulting architect for the project. Departing from stately and
monochromatic Neoclassicism, Arellano’s aesthetic for the Met was stunningly different
from his previous works as it eagerly embraced a fanciful new style: Art Deco. It was an
architectural confection fuelled by exoticism and fascination with non-classical
ornamentation in the early 20th century.

The architecture of the Met is energised by a meé lange of ornaments with


allure and fantasy. Arellano adapted the stylistic language of Art Deco which had originated
in the Paris Exposition of 1925 to convey local identities and meanings, using native
decorative forms and subject matter. He explored familiar native motifs with the aim of
asserting cultural independence in colonial social order. The country’s distinct flora and
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fauna replaced classical ornamentation. Native art provided new forms that were both
“exotic” and national that were expressed in vibrant tile ornamentation, stained glass,
friezes, sculptures, and wall textures. Nativist iconography is expressed in tell-tale
Philippine details such as bamboo banister railings, carved banana and mango reliefs, and
batik mosaic patterns. Styled after Philippine vegetation and wildlife, the motifs were
executed with the assistance of Arellano’s elder brother Arcadio and Isabelo Tampinco, the
leading decorative sculptor of the day.

The Met was formally inaugurated on 10 December 1931. Through the next
decade, it seemed all the great artists of the world travelling through the Far East were
booked to appear at the Met, as the theatre reached the peak of its cultural activities in the
years leading up to the war. During the Japanese Occupation, the most important concerts
were held there— like the one celebrating the inauguration of the Philippine Republic
under Japan on 17 October 1943, that featured Antonino Buenaventura’s Rhapsodetta and
Antonio Molina’s arrangement of Rizal’s “Alin Mang Lahi.”

As a cinema palace, the Met was equipped with a modern projector to show
both Hollywood and local films. Disney’s Mickey Mouse made his debut in the Philippines
here. The Philippines’ legendary LVN Pictures also released its inaugural film, the critically
acclaimed Giliw Ko, on 29 July 1939 at the Metropolitan Theatre with no less than President
Manuel Quezon attending the premiere.
Like many a young Filipino gallant, the Met was sacrificed at its prime in the
Battle for the Liberation of Manila. Similar to most of the other buildings that lay in the path
of the retreating Japanese soldiers, the Met was ruthlessly bombed and indiscriminately
shelled by the American liberation forces. However, the Met was a survivor. Unlike most of
the buildings in Manila, it merely lost its roof as its walls withstood the barrage of enemy
and friendly fire. Battle scars can still be seen on some parts of the building.

Financial difficulties would thrust the Met into limbo with performances
being inadequate in generating funds to keep the Metropolitan Theatre Company afloat.
The structure would be mortgaged to El Hogar Filipino, represented by the Melian brothers,
who partially renovated the theatre and made it a cinema for American films.

Through the Philippine Rehabilitation Act of 1946, partial restorations were


made after World War II, but the lustre was gone from the Art Deco gem. In the three
decades after the war, the Met, still partly in ruins, experienced a gradual decline, being
leased and sub-leased, passed on from one management to another, fighting the slow
descent to obscurity by transforming its space into the Besa Boxing Arena, cheap motels
and gay bars, basketball courts, garages and warehouses—and finally, a home to about 50

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families of informal settlers. Of all its pre-war establishments, only the Magnolia
Rendezvous stood ground on the site, loyally embracing the Met despite its tarnished
image.

In 1978, the old Metropolitan Theatre had undergone a complete restoration


after its destruction in the Battle for the Liberation of Manila in 1945 and Post-War decline
and misuse. The cultural renaissance it enjoyed since it reopened in 1978 was short-lived
as political change marred its very existence and was finally forced to close its doors in
1996. The curtain went up again in 2010 but financial constraints and contests over
ownership forced it to dim its lights once more.
Finally, in May 2015, the NCCA was authorised by the government to
purchase the Metropolitan Theatre for 270 million pesos to jumpstart the rehabilitation
procedure and breathe new life to the once neglected cultural landmark.

The Metropolitan Theatre is in phase one of a two-part conservation strategy


covering the repair and refurbishment of the theatre’s façade; the reconditioning of its
facilities and utilities; and the restoration of the main theatre, lobby, and open courts to the
design intent of Arellano in the 1930s.

Work commenced shortly after the theatre was purchased in 2015, with the
formulation of a Conservation Management Plan (CMP), a document which serves as the
guide for the entire conservation protocol. Within this CMP is a comprehensive listing of the
structure’s physical, social, historical, and architectural significance. Structurally the Met is
sound, with most damages and deterioration occurring only on the surface. The building
itself is an engineering wonder, with massive members and a structural frame of reinforced
concrete and steel girder construction in the same light as its contemporaries, the Ayala and
Quezon bridges.

To generate accurate plans and models of both the structural and


architectural details which will form the basis for all subsequent restoration works, ground
penetrating radar (GPR), 3-D Laser Scanning, XRF spectroscopy, and core sampling were
conducted on the Met. Every step of the way, the project highlights the best practice in
architectural conservation: that of least intervention.
For authenticity, the restoration of the Met’s iconic Art Deco ornaments underwent a
thorough investigative process. Sources for the study included archival plans and hand-
drawn sketches by Arellano, and depictions of the Met in print and audio-visual media shot
by the American and Philippine governments, and films, such as Bituing Walang Ningning.
These sources shed light on the details of how the theatre looked like in particular

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moments of its storied history and helped the team arrive at aesthetic choices honest to the
spirit and character of the structure.

The actual construction on the site has been ongoing since February of 2017
and since then, there have been significant milestones.

The façade has been cleaned of debris and vegetal growth, with cracks and
spalling mitigated. The iconic anay-finish exterior has also been restored to original
specifications: in light pink and cream with pastel undertones, featuring exotic and tropical
motifs in a

medley of colours in line with the Art Deco style. Decorating the main entryway are floral
elements rendered in capiz and antique bronze. The marquee—a monumental stained-
glass beacon, backlit, executed by the Kraut Art Glass company—is now visible, capturing
the imagination of passers-by as it had done for the past 86 years. The canopy is lit through
a series of Technicolor panes, echoing the stained glass above and adorned by sculptures,
reliefs, and tiles depicting gargoyles, mythical figures, and tropical floral elements. Four
oriental dancers flank the core of the structure, their likenesses evoking a sophisticated
beauty which inspired, in part, the likeness of the Filipino superheroine, Darna. The Met is
topped by a series of finial capped bamboo and spires on a bowed silhouette echoing the
temples of the orient, including Borobudur and Paoay Church. These are rendered in gold.

The Main Lobby is nearing completion, with the iconic Adam and Eve sculptures by
Francesco Monti, in their bronzed concrete and back to their original splendour. However,
the murals painted by Fernando Amorsolo in the lobby, The Dance and the History of Music,
are in the GSIS Museum so for now, pending their repatriation, digital reproductions hang
in their place. The walls have likewise been painted with a yellow-green colour scheme,
replicating the look of the theatre when it first opened. The Art Deco grillwork, including
the drooping floral balustrade and the birds of paradise motif on the gate, is awaiting its
final coat of antique gold paint. Art Deco fixtures are being fabricated and will once again
illuminate the grand lobby of the Met. The ceiling ornamentation, rendered in plaster, was
unfortunately lost during the war; however, significant details have been extracted from the
extensive research and they are now being rendered in the more durable fibreglass
material. The floors are a combination of different kinds of marble, all imported from Italy,
and have been at the Met since its inception. All the cracks and chips tell the story of the
Met and will be retained when the structure is completed.

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The Main Theatre seats 1,760 in the orchestra, mezzanine, and balcony areas, and
was at its inception one of the largest theatres in the Far East. Its walls continue with the
anay finish, but in a delicate old rose colour, with the textured appearance serving an
acoustic function.

The highlight, however, is the theatre’s fruit festooned ceiling, with its Art Deco
mangoes and bananas bordered by abaca rope, a playful showcase of the Philippines’
primary produce and a creative solution to an acoustic challenge. Complementing this is the
orchestra seating’s ceiling which is a tropical rendition of Art Deco: banana leaves,
coconuts, parrots, and unfurling ferns symbolise perfection in the golden ratio; and frozen
fountains symbolise eternal life.

The proscenium too, is being restored to the original Monti masterwork, with the
one lost plaster relief uncovered during the restoration work. A team of skilled artisans and
artists are on hand to execute the damaged portions in plaster and fibreglass to ensure the
longevity of the piece. In the search for the original proscenium, two of the eight bas reliefs
depicting the songs of nature were revealed after more than 40 years. Thus, the Main
Theatre will be ready to return to its role as a venue for dramas, zarzuelas, and recitals,
with all the luxuries and amenities of a state-of-the-art performing arts space.

The open courtyards adjacent to the main theatre are being restored to the original
configuration, with gardens and performing arts spaces. As Arellano himself did not specify
a final design, and photographs of the Met do not show the courtyards in a finished state
(the 1970s intervention opted to build more structures here), the design of the courtyards
took inspiration from the motifs present at the Met and gardens from the same era. The
newly liberated courtyards will serve as alternative venues for performances, with
possibilities for theatres-in- the-round and outdoor cinemas.

In keeping with Arellano’s On Wings of Song theme for the two wings of the Met, the
renovation envisions that they house workshops and function halls visible to, and open to
the masses, for a more intimate and engaging experience of our art and culture. These will
be venues for visiting, and resident artists, craftspeople, and artisans to showcase their
process and product and the NCCA to educate and inform the public of such endeavours.
Gallery and exhibition spaces will showcase developments in our performing and visual
arts, as these spaces were originally intended to do so in the 1930s. A permanent exhibition
on the conservation of structures in concrete will complement a laboratory dedicated to the
same, to keep the Met and its contemporary heritage structures intact for generations to
come. A curated selection of stores facing Padre Burgos Avenue will highlight Filipino art

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and contribute to the financial sustainability of the structure. The restaurant and cafeé will
be brought to functioning order as well, with their band stage restored from archival plans.

When completed, the Metropolitan Theatre will once again be a cultural hub at the
heart of the historic district of Manila, allowing everyone equal opportunity to appreciate
the beauty and sophistication that our rich and diverse culture offers.

1.2.1 HISTORICAL BACKGROUND OF THE PROJECT


The Manila Metropolitan Theater is one of the grandest buildings built during
the American Colonial Period (1901-1940) and it is the greatest contribution of Filipinos in
the world of Art Deco. It is a beautiful jewel of modernistic architecture, the synthesis that
came out of local Filipino forms and the international Art Deco style that was famous
during that era.
The theater launched the life works of Philippine National Artists in
architecture, visual arts, music, dance and literature, who dominated Philippine cultural
history. It was relegated to obsolescence after the structural damage of the Second World
War and the meteoric popularity of television, movies and the contemporary cyberspace
media.
The Philippine government has prioritized the theater’s restoration because
of its prominence as an imposing landmark with high aesthetic and architectural
significance in the heart of Manila city. This two part study develops the conservation
management plan and the feasibility study to make the theater operational and conserve
the meaning of the theater for future generations.

1.2.2 HISTORICAL BACKGROUND OF THE PROBLEM

The Manila Metropolitan Theater as it is fondly called is one of Manila’s


outstanding landmarks situated in a lot area of 7, 633.10 square meters in the northern end
of the Mehan Garden (1994,
Buenaventura). It is bounded in the north by the Quezon Bridge, in the north
east by the LRT Central Station, in the east by the Manila City Hall, in the west by the Manila
Parkland Ride terminal and in the north west by the MacArthur Bridge.

1.2.3 IDENTIFICATION OF THE PROBLEM

The Met has a seating capacity of 1670 after its original 1930’s completion
which was later increased to 1709 after its 1978 restoration. It reached its peak during the
Japanese Occupation where it became a Japanese propaganda center where major culture
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activities were held. The 1945 Battle of Manila left the Met in ruins as it was not spared
from the heavy bombing of the American armed forces. The roof was completely obliterated
while the walls withstood the shelling and bombing. After its declaration in 1973 as a
National Landmark PD 260, it was reconstructed and reopened to the public in 1978.
The theatre was consequently closed down in 1996 following a dispute of its
ownership and management between the Government Service Insurance System (GSIS) and
the City of Manila. This dispute was finally resolved in 2000 with the ownership granted to
GSIS and with the City of Manila as the manager. In 2002, funding for the restoration of the
Met was started and in 2004 a tripartite agreement among GSIS, City government of Manila
and the National Commission for Culture and the Arts (NCCA) was signed which formally
started a work action plan for the restoration of the theatre.

1.3 STATEMENT OF THE PROBLEM

With the presented data, it is a fact that the Manila Metropolitan Theater
needs a more improved facility to properly cater Filipino performer Artist. The research is
conducted to address the following problems cited above.
As the research carry on, it is needed to specifically address the following questions:
1. Why is there a need to develop the proposal? How can the proposed new MET building
provide solutions being addressed on the study?
2. What are the architectural design considerations necessary in order to plan a facility or
structure for the users of the proposed building? How can the architecture of the project
provide ease for the beneficiaries?
3. What are the space requirements of the proposed building?
4. What are the existing conditions of MET that does not comply in the international
standards?
5. How many people are being observed and catered in this study

1.4 ARCHITECTURAL THESIS GOALS. OBJECTIVES AND


STRATEGIES
Goals
This research is to create and promote a structure mainly for New
Metropolitan Theater for the performing artist industry. It also seeks to create improved

facilities and introduce innovations mainly to enhance the experience of those who will be
using the structure. The goal of this study is to seek, determine and be able to point out the
problems present in Theater and to rectify them accordingly through a thorough study and

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design of the spaces of the proposed new Metropolitan Theater Building and to be able to
incorporate a modern art deco design so as to be inclined to the environment and as an
advocacy as well.

GOAL

OBJECTIVE 1 OBJECTIVE 2 OBJECTIVE 3


To assess the most To study the spaces To introduce new
appropriate site for of the existing spaces and innovation
the new structure building and for improved
incorporate new experience in the
and improved structure
spaces.
Figure 1: Architectural Goals

1.5 SCOPE AND LIMITATIONS

Scope of the study includes historical background of theater in general and


also the Manila Metropolitan Theater in particular. This study also described the problem of
the study which circulates around the idea that the Filipino cultural identity needs defining
as it is accused of being an imitation to the culture of its once colonizers.
Evident to the history of the Metropolitan Theater in this country, its structure follows the
style/ design movement of the period on which the theater was built.

1.5.1 SCOPE OF WORK

The Proposed New Metropolitan Theater aims to answer the problems of the
existing office in terms of space and renovating design. The proposal also seeks to provide
the best strategic location of the new building so as to provide convenience to the people it
will cater and also to a way to provide the adequate and improved the facilities.

1.5.2 LIMITATIONS
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Limited sources of research for Manila Metropolitan Theater in general,


public libraries hold little archive for studies of the subject in Philippine context.
Interviewing experts proved to be challenging since most does not have the time and
interest to participate in the interview that the researcher conducted.
Budgetary constraint is also a problem since some theater tours are quite expensive.

1.6 DEFINITION OF TERMS AND CONCEPTS

DEFINITION OF TERMS
Here are some definitions of terms that are used from this chapter:

Acoustics
- In a room: it defines some factors that determine its character with respect
to the quality of the received sound.
Adopt
- To choose as a standard or required in a course; to take and follow by choice
or assent.
Albeit
- Although; even if.
Art Deco
- It is a characterized geographical patterns, stylized motif often depicted by
sunburst patterns and pyramidal shapes.
Balance
- Means a harmonious proportion, as in the design or arrangement of parts.

Balcony
- A seating area raised entirely above the ground level in a theater.
Benefit
- It means that a theatrical performance or other public entertainment to
raise money for a charitable organization or cause.
Character
- Is the combination of qualities or features that distinguishes things from
another.
Concept
- An idea of something formed by mentally combining all its characteristics or
particulars; a construct.
Concoct
- Means to digest; to cook; to plot; to invent.
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Contemporary
- Modern style or designs applied within the performing arts theater.
Cultivate
- Means to improve, to refine, to study.a
Culminate
- Means to reach the highest point.
Culture
- is defined with beliefs, customs, practices and social behavior of a particular
nation or people through arts, music, literature, and intellectual activities.
Dilemma
- It‟s a choice of unpleasant alternatives.
Features
- Something offered as a special attraction; a prominent or conspicuous part.
Functions
- The kind of action or activity proper to a person, thing or institution, the
purpose for which something is designed or exists; role.
Form
- Is a specific structure, condition, appearance, style, and counterpart of
space.
Green Room
- It’s a formal space area (V.I.P lounge area) that is used by the artist to greet
the public after a performance.
House- refers to the performance experience that is fundamentally about the
relationship between the performers and the audience.
Identity
- To make prove, or considered as the same; identifying.
Ideology
- The body of ideas reflecting the social needs and aspirations of an individual, group, class,
or culture.
Innovative
- Is to make alterations or changes in something already established.
Illustration
- The comparison or examples that explain or collaborate; picture to
elucidate or adorn text.
Norm
- Is a rule; standard; type; model; average score.
Opera

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- consists of songs, music, action/ acting, singing, dancing, and spectacle on a


live stage.
Perspective
- The art of representing objects on a plane surface as they appear to the eye.
Practicability
- Is a theater designed or constructed for actual use; capable of being done,
effected, or put into practice, with the available means; feasible.
Prevalent
- It means “wide-spread”.
Percolate
- Is to pass through small spaces.
Proscenium stage/s
- It is a stage configuration in which the viewers watch a certain play through
a rectangular opening (the proscenium arch) that resembles a picture frame it is arrange
differently compared to Arena and Open/ Thrust stage.
Senakulo
- It is a Philippine traditional process every holy week from the month of
March-April, when a person who is sinful would do the same as what Jesus Christ did when
he was crucified on the cross.
Spacious
- Occupying much space of great extent area; containing much space as a
house and room.
Theater
- A setting for a plays or a wide room for dramatic presentations are
performed inside the building.
Traditionl
- The handing down of statements, beliefs, legends, customs, information, etc.
from generation to generation, especially by practice.
Zarsuela
- Is a spread to Spanish colonies and many Hispanic countries. (Has two main
forms: Baroque Zarsuela and Romantic Zarsuela).

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1.7 PURPOSE/RELEVANCE? SIGNIFICANCE OF THE THESIS

This study will be a significant endeavor that will provide a well-planned


detail for the improvement of the New MET building that will aid not only the staff of the
building but the correspondingly the artist community. Moreover, this study suggest
empirical ideas on how to implement effective architectural planning that would greatly
help the department, specifically, suggesting a more accessible and convenient planning to
facilely regulate the flow of operation.
Furthermore, this study also highlights the concept that with the application of effective
architectural planning, the structure shall guarantee the proper security of the building and
to the market it serves.

1.8 ASSUMPTIONS

The results of the study will confirm the need to develop the proposal. It will
verify that the structure will not only be beneficiary to the Filipino performer/artists but
also the government and the Filipinos who are also into the theater industry .Through
intensive research, important data are also expected to be learned by the researcher and
provide a more realistic proposal.
The project will not cause significant, negative changes in the vicinity; one of
which is traffic congestion. The project will not cause any major traffic congestion since,
according to the conducted survey, most of the target users do not have vehicles and
therefore rely on public transportation only, which shall be provided proper and adequate
drop offs in the Site Development Plan. The site is also away from intersections which are
critical points to traffic jams.

The research proposes to be added in the Metropolitan Theater in order to


cater the needs of the people. In addition to that, It will also help in boosting the rate of
employment in the city and also promoting the tourism of the Luzon and the site will serve
as a major landmark in Metro Manila.

Although the main and sub problems are based from real issues of the
Metropolitan Theater, the thesis is still a theoretical project.

For the purpose of the study, the following will be held true:

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1. Although the Metropolitan Theater is envisioned to be a future development, the existing


structures will still be used as basis for the computation and programming of spaces.

2. The basis for the space programming will be taken from the projected visitors of the site.
This will be done by collecting statistics that will assume the development’s future user
density.

3. The non-operational structure in the current site will be considered non-existent.


However, the history and existing facilities of the Metropolitan Theater will still be revisited
during the conception phase of the thesis.

4. Following the notion that there are shared memories from the existing structure, the
existing structures in the Metropolitan Theater will serve as case studies in the process of
creation of the new Metropolitan Theater

1.9 THEORETICAL/CONCEPTUAL FRAMEWORK

This map shows how the researcher formulated a framework on how to


systematically go on with her study. Part of the plan includes a visionary idea on the
location of the envisioned theater. Such was chosen for the high rate of people density in
the area. Also include in the map is a plan on how to make the place look attractive and
functional. And of course, in the map, it is also included that as the basic needs of a theater
is followed and technical aspects are fulfilled, the modern art deco concept must fall into
cohesive mix within Filipino context.
PROBLEM: Can the “Modern Art Deco” concept marry to the functional aspect of planning a
Performing arts theater and apply Filipino idea through space? In order to create a design
based on our own idea of style is to learn how to adopt the foreign influences since the
Filipino culture is already a mixture of pre-colonial, colonial and post-colonial packed in a
single identity. We cannot separate the foreign influences since it already became part of us
for so many years.

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1.10 METHODOLOGY/RESEARCH DESIGN

There are various research methodology used in this thesis proposal. The
main method used to provide data was the descriptive method which helps give an
informative study. To further support these information; case studies were done in order to
identify the problems that were faced by the site with the intention of avoiding the same
mistakes in the current thesis proposal. Related literatures were also collected in order to
back up the research. Different strategies like interview and achieves were also done on the
purpose of collective more information.

1.10.1 LOCALITY/SITE/GEOGRAPHY

Manila, capital and chief city of the Philippines. The city is the centre of the
country’s economic, political, social, and cultural activity. It is located on the island of Luzon
and spreads along the eastern shore of Manila Bay at the mouth of the Pasig River. The
city’s name, originally Maynilad, is derived from that of the nilad plant, a flowering shrub
adapted to marshy conditions, which once grew profusely along the banks of the river; the
name was shortened first to Maynila and then to its present form. In 1975, by presidential
decree, Manila and its contiguous cities and municipalities were integrated to function as a
single administrative region, known as Metropolitan Manila (also called the National
Capital Region); the Manila city proper encompasses only a small proportion of that area.
Manila has been the principal city of the Philippines for four centuries and is
the centre of its industrial development as well as the international port of entry. It is
situated on one of the finest sheltered harbours of the Pacific region, about 700 miles
(1,100 km) southeast of Hong Kong. The city has undergone rapid economic development
since its destruction in World War II and its subsequent rebuilding; it is now plagued with
the familiar urban problems of pollution, traffic congestion, and overpopulation. Measures
have been taken, however, to ameliorate those problems. Area city, 15 square miles (38
square km); National Capital Region, 244 square miles (633 square km). Pop. (2000) city,
1,581,082; National Capital Region, 9,932,560; (2010) city, 1,652,171; National Capital
Region, 11,855,975.

City site

Manila occupies the low, narrow deltaic plain of the Pasig River, which flows
northwestward to Manila Bay. The swampy delta of the southward-flowing Pampanga River
lies to the north of the city. Immediately to the northeast and east of the urban region
27
MANUEL L. QUEZON UNIVERSITY
ARCHITECTURAL DESIGN 9
A PROPOSED NEW MANILA METROPOLITAN
Defining the Filipino Cultural Identity: Filipino Avant Garde in Performing Arts Theater

lies a stretch of lowlands, beyond which rise the peaks of the southern range of the Sierra
Madre. Laguna de Bay, the large lake from which the Pasig River flows, flanks Metropolitan
Manila to the southeast. Enclosing Manila Bay to the west is the mountainous Bataan
Peninsula. Although the city’s area is constricted, it is an excellent port site because of its
sheltered harbour, its access to inland agricultural areas by way of the river, and its relative
proximity to the Asian mainland.
1.10.2 UNIT ANALYSIS

SY 2015- SY 2014- SY 2013-


ENROLMENT (Source: DepEd) 2016 8/ 2015 2014

Number of public schools


Elementary 38,688 38,648 38,688
Secondary 8,159 7,976 7,914

Kindergarten public enrolment 1,737,313 1,812,960 1,865,807

Elementary public enrolment (Grade 1 to 6) 11,151,040 13,264,588 13,245,848

Secondary public enrolment 6,010,937 5,746,153 5,769,136


Grade 7 1,713,333 1,637,350 …
Grade 8 1,581,325 1,514,295 …
Grade 9 1,449,567 1,350,316 …
Grade 10 1,260,908 1,238,818 …
Grade 11 3,524 4,002 …
Grade 12 2,280 1,372 …

1.10.3 TIME DIMENSION

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MANUEL L. QUEZON UNIVERSITY
ARCHITECTURAL DESIGN 9
A PROPOSED NEW MANILA METROPOLITAN
Defining the Filipino Cultural Identity: Filipino Avant Garde in Performing Arts Theater

1.10.4 INSTRUMENTS TO BE USED

Site Visits- The researcher used the process of making a request letter of
having permission to the representative to make an ocular inspection of the site with a
documented approval.
Observation- The process whereby the researcher observes a certain
situation, behavioral patterns apparent in the theatre environment, and patrons‟
interaction toward the theater.

This study is limited to provide an improved architectural plan for a new


METROPOLITAN THEATER building. This includes the analysis for the best location of the
building as well as the enhancement of the buildings security and flow of people which can
be answered through a strategic architectural planning. This study also aims and is limited
to provide complete facilities that will enable to function its full extent specifically to its
responsibility to provide for the Filipino performer/artist and also to provide facilities that
will help the Manila City Hall

1.11.5 WORK PLAN

Objective Activities/Method Output Agency/person Requirements Time


(Required to be Tapped materials, Frame
Data money, etc.)
/Result)
To Observation The process
whereby the
researcher
observes a
certain
situation,
behavioral
patterns
apparent in
the theatre
environment,
and patrons‟
interaction
toward the

29
MANUEL L. QUEZON UNIVERSITY
ARCHITECTURAL DESIGN 9
A PROPOSED NEW MANILA METROPOLITAN
Defining the Filipino Cultural Identity: Filipino Avant Garde in Performing Arts Theater

theater.

1.12 BIBLIOGRAPHY

https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Manila_Metropolitan_Theater
https://www.britannica.com/place/Manila

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MANUEL L. QUEZON UNIVERSITY
ARCHITECTURAL DESIGN 9

Related Interests