In the play the brothers are warned to leave the premises but they decided to stay to defend the school. Sixteen brothers and 24 civilians were massacred in the school’s premises on Feb. 12, 1945.
When the war commenced, the American Christian Brothers were replaced by the German Christian Brothers who were based in Singapore. They, in turn, were expelled from Singapore by the British because the United Kingdom was at war with Germany in Europe. Since Germany was not at war with Japan, this seemed to be a good decision at the time. However, war turns human beings into monsters and as the Americans made their drive towards Manila, the Japanese vented their frustrations on hapless unarmed citizens. Out of the flames of war, heroes are also forged. This show will honor their memory, their service to humanity, and make us remember them eternally.
Director Peque Gallaga had this to say: “The La Salle Martyrs were the first foreigners who proved Filipinos were worth dying for.” Gallaga said that aside from showing love for their host country, the brothers’ deaths also showed that investing in Filipinos meant more than teaching them literacy and numeracy. He further added that the message of the show was on the level of what inspired people to join the “yellow army” of pro-Cory Aquino groups with high ideals, high principles. The Filipino people had the power to toppled a dictator.
Fire in the Soul was created by Gabby Fernandez, directed by Peque Gallaga, with a libretto by Vicente Garcia Groyon, and music by Von de Guzman.
The cast includes Michael de Mesa (Bro. Egbert), Franco Laurel (Bro. Antonius), Al Gatmaitan (Bro. Mutwald), Jonel Mojica (Bro. Friedbert), Miguel Castro (Bro. Arkadius), Floyd Tena (Bro. Athanasius), and Naomi Sison (Alma Mater).
Also, joining them are Onyl Torres (Japanese Captain), Nazer Salcedo (Japanese Soldier 1), Gary Fabricante (Japanese Soldier 2), and John Gilbert Arceo (Japanese Soldier 3).
Narrators are Jaime Fabregas, Ricky Gallaga, Conchita Castillo, Dado Jose, Tanya Lopez, and Louie Zabaljauregi.
Featured in this production are the different La Salle singing groups, namely: De La Salle Inner Soul, De La Salle-Zobel Chorale, La Salle Centennial Orchestra, La Salle Centennial Chorus. Some kids of La Salle-Greenhills are also part of the show.
Joining the Production and the Artistic Team are Mio Infante (Production Design), Dong Calingacion (Technical and Lighting Director), GA Fallarme (Projection Design), Br. Bernard S. Oca, FSC (Executive Producer), and Lore Reyes (Line Producer).
The show will only have two performances at the Teresa Yuchengco Auditorium at the 7th floor of the Don Enrique Yuchengco Hall at De La Salle University in Taft Avenue on Sunday, Feb. 26 at 3 p.m., and Monday, Feb. 27 at 8 p.m. (Gala Night).
Tickets for the Feb. 26 show are P200 for regular tickets and P100 for students, and for the Feb. 27 show, regular tickets are P500 and P250 for students, and regular balcony tickets are P250 and P200 for students. For details call the DLSU Centennial Office at 524-4511 local 290 or e-mail firstname.lastname@example.org.