Regine Anthem for JAZZ IN LOVE
Written and photographed
By Jude Bautista
The Cinemalaya 2013 opening film is a documentary called JAZZ IN LOVE by Baby Ruth Villarama. It’s about Ernesto Tiglao nicknamed Jazz, a gay 22 year old in Davao who fell in love with middle aged German via facebook. This documentary is able to show real emotion in a way that a feature film can’t. In one part Theo (German guy), Jazz and his brother celebrated their birthdays (only weeks apart) together.
In it, there was this little boy not more than 10 years old. An orphan, he survives by taking care of the videoke machine that people rent for their parties. When everyone else had their fill with the machine, he took the mic and sang DADALHIN made famous by Regine Velasquez, music and lyrics by Tats Faustino.
Hearing the lyrics it could not be more apt with the situation of Jazz and Theo. Jazz has high hopes of going to Germany, changing his life literally: Ang pangarap ko ang ‘yong binubuhay ngayong nagmamahal ka sa akin ng tunay at ng tinig mo’y parang musika. Nagpapaligaya sa munting nagwawala ang sarap nitong pag-ibig.
The brilliant song written and composed by Tats Faustino is about how love can change someone’s life, full of hope and promise. Then reality sinks in, love turns to loss and pain. Lalo na noong sinabi mong dadalhin kita sa ‘king palasyo. Dadalhin hanggang langit ay manibago ang lahat ng ito’y pinangako mo. Dadalhin lang pala ng hangin ang pangarap ko. Nang mawalay ka sa aking pagsinta bawat saglit gabing malamig ang himig ko hanap ang yakap mo…
There was so much more truth hearing an eight year old singing it with sincerity. The foreground was the boy’s innocent face; in the background Jazz would caress Theo’s cheek. The issue wasn’t that they were gay; the question is what will happen to their love? It’s the same with everyone else’s relationship whether straight, gay or whatever. By the end of the song in Tanghalang Nicanor Abelardo the audience could not help but applaud the performance of that child.
Other documentary screenings in Cinemalaya from July 26-August 3 include: YANAN by Mae Urtal Caralde, BUKANG LIWAYWAY by Pabelle Manikan, THE PRIVILEGED MIGRANTS by Rica Arevalo, ISHMA by Sari Dalena and Keith Sicat, BOTONG FRANCISCO: A NATION IMAGINED by Peque Gallaga written by Vince Groyon and SEARCH FOR WENG WENG by Andrew Leavold.
Docu filmmaker Baby Ruth Villarama in an interview said that she just wanted to capture moments in Jazz life whose full name is Ernesto Tiglao. Life happens and sometimes reality is even more entertaining than any made up story. Just like the moment captured above. Baby Ruth was herself enrolled in the Goethe Institute taking up German classes when she found out the fascinating stories of her classmates. A number of them, like Jazz have met Germans on the net. One of the visa requirements is fluency or working knowledge of German.
Baby Ruth was already shooting another subject when she had problems with permission to shoot details of her life. Switching to Jazz as a subject seemed natural, since he was such an animated personality and had no problems with the shoot along with Theo.
Baby Ruth tapped the services of Dexter Dela Peña as director of photography while also doing camera work herself. Since, it was mostly a run and gun style, just going with Jazz and Theo there were no opportunities to light scenes or block subjects. To achieve this they used the CANON EOS 5D Mark II which allowed them to use lenses with wider apertures 2.8, 1.8 etc. The low light performances of these lenses were amazing having great bokeh or circles of confusion in darker scenes.
Sometimes the two would have intimate conversations silhouetted against street lamps, the lights behind them melt into soft glowing hues. The 5D Mark II setup also allowed them to shoot Davao’s famous fest, the very colorful KADAYAWAN. Dela Peña is one of the young talented cinematographers today. He has 3 other films shot in Cinemalaya: DIPLOMAT HOTEL by Chris Ad Castillo, DEBOSYON by Alvin Yapan and INSTANT MOMMY by Leo Abaya.
Baby Ruth Villarama’s better half is multi awarded film editor Chuck Gutierrez. The successful pair runs VOYAGE Studios, which has been involved in a great number of Cinemalaya projects. She is also executive producer for DEBOSYON and worked as producer most recently for MNL 143 by Emerson Reyes and PALAWAN FATE by Auraeus Solito. She prefers to direct more documentaries in the future. Being able to capture these moments that are intimate, that are real especially in JAZZ IN LOVE help us viewers to see truth in our own lives.
For My Angel,
Haplos ng ‘yong puso
Parang walang ligtas
Kundi ang lumuha
Ang hapdi din
Umasa pa sa sinabi mong
Dadalhin kita sa ‘king palasyo
Dadalhin hanggang langit ay manibago
ang lahat ng ito’y pinangako mo.
Dadalhin lang pala ng hangin ang pangarap ko.
Umiiyak, umiiyak ang puso ko
Alaala pa ang sinabi mo
Noong nadarama pa ang pag-ibig mo
Ang lahat ng ito’y pinangako mo
Dadalhin lang pala ng hangin ang pangarap ko
This entry was posted on July 28, 2013 by jude bautista. It was filed under Cinemalaya, Film, Music, People and was tagged with 1.8, 2.8, 2013, 22 year old, 5D Mark II, Alvin Yapan, Andrew Leavold, Auraeus Solito, Baby Ruth Villarama, bokeh, BOTONG FRANCISCO: A NATION IMAGINED, BUKANG LIWAYWAY, Canon, CCP, Chris Ad Castillo, Cinemalaya, circles of confusion, DADALHIN, Davao, DEBOSYON, Dexter Dela Peña, DIPLOMAT HOTEL, director of photography, documentary, editor Chuck Gutierrez, Emerson Reyes, EOS, Ernesto Tiglao, facebook, fell in love, gay, GB3 and Alabang Town Center, German, Goethe Institute, INSTANT MOMMY, ISHMA, JAZZ IN LOVE, Jude Bautista, KADAYAWAN, Keith Sicat, lenses, Leo Abaya, Mae Urtal Caralde, middle aged, MNL 143, music and lyrics, opening film, orphan, Pabelle Manikan, Palawan Fate, Peque Gallaga, Regine Velasquez, Rica Arevalo, Sari Dalena, SEARCH FOR WENG WENG, Tanghalang Nicanor Abelardo, Tats Faustino, The Cinemalaya, THE PRIVILEGED MIGRANTS, Trinoma, videoke machine, Vince Groyon, Voyage Studios, YANAN.