Jul 30
ENTERTAINMENT BEFORE THE INTERNET by Tess Clarin  |  Posted in Articles  |  on Fri, Jul 30, 2010

A decade or so after the war, downtown Manila was the hub of entertainment. Dinadayo ang mga so-called first-run theaters para mapanood ang mga bagong pelikula sa Avenida (Rizal Avenue) at Azcarraga (Recto Avenue).

Center, Life, Dalisay at Globe theaters ang balwarte ng mga Tagalog movies. Sa English movies naman ay ang Avenue, Capitol, Ideal, Ever, Galazy, Odeon, State, Universal at iba pang sinehan gaya ng Super Cinerama na pag-aari ni Congressman Pablo Roman.

Life theater ang suki ng Sampaguita Pictures habang ang mga pelikula ng LVN Pictures naman ay sa Dalisay theater ipinalalabas. The rest of Tagalog movies produced by other studios were shown in Globe and Center theaters.

Take note na ang pelikula noong araw ay sa isang sinehan lamang nagso-showing hindi gaya ngayon na simultaneous in many theaters kaya may tinatawag na “lagarista.” And a movie would be shown for 10 straight days unless there was no audience to speak of.

For the movie ticket, you had to shell out P1.20 para makakapasok ka sa first-run theater. But for 85 centavos (or less in the suburbs), makaka-pagtiyaga ka sa medyo lumang pelikula sa second run theaters na merong “kadobol” ang palabas – that was actually watching 2 movies.

Bukod sa movies ay meron ding theaters for stage shows. Opera House was the pioneer for this during the time of Pugo and Tugo, Patsy and Lopito, Chichay and other comedians including Dolphy. Clover theater was another venue for live shows especially musicals for Pilita Corrales and Bobby Gonzales.

Other known theaters in Manila were Maxim, Miramar, Jennet, Lords while the most famous theater in Makati was Rizal followed by Magallanes and Quad with its 4 theaters in one building. Sa Quezon City naman ay merong New Frontier, Act, Sampaguita and later on ay Ali Mall.

For the oldtime moviegoers, it was a habit to eat after the movies. Hindi puwedeng makalimutan ang Ma Mon Luk, Wa Nam, Hen Wa at Wa Pak, mga cheap but quality Chinese restaurants in Downtown Manila. For the Filipino taste, nandyan ang Little Quiapo which boasts of its halo-halo.

For the moneyed moviegoer, puwedeng dumiretso sa Max’s Fried Chicken o kaya ay sa Aristocrat along Dewey Boulevard (Roxas Blvd. na ngayon). For the classy people, they proceeded to Automat right there in Ayala Avenue, Makati.

Sa pagkauso ng television in the late 1960s ay nangunguna sa tanghali ang Darigold Jamboree hosted by Leila Benitez, Eddie Ilarde, Bobby Ledesma and Pepe Pimentel. Later on ay lumipat sila ng studio at naging Student Canteen ito.

Sa gabi naman ay Oras Ng Ligaya ang tinututukan ng mga tao starring Sylvia La Torre, Oscar Obligacion and Cris De Vera. The Big Show ang original title nito. Later on ay namayagpag ang Buhay Artista ni Dolphy at Panchito kasama ang iba pang comedians gaya ni Babalu at Cachupoy.

Ang isa sa mga foreign tv shows na tumatak sa Pinoy tv audience ay ang The Wild, Wild West. Robert Conrad played James West and Ross Martin essayed West’s assistant Artemus Gordon who was good in disguises and gimmicks.

Another long-running tv serial was Hawaii Five-O. Obviously, ang setting nito ay Hawaii at ito ang nagpasikat ng Hawaiian shirt. Jack Lord who played Steve McGarret led the cast together with James McArthur who portrayed Danny Williams. Naging best-selling record ang theme song ng Hawaii Five-O na isang danceable music.

Para sa mga walang TV that time, nagtitiis na lang sa Mga Kuwento Ni Lola Basyang na umeere sa radyo tuwing Biyernes ng gabi. Nandyan din ang Beinte Kuwatro Oras na produced ni Johnny De Leon, ang sikat na radio announcer noon.

Ang iba pang sumikat na radio programs ay Tangtarang-Tang nina Pugo, Bentot, Leroy Salvador at Sylvia La Torre pati ang Tawag ng Tanghalan nina Patsy at Lopito. Meron ding Gabi Ng Lagim, Salamat Po Doktor, Kahapon Lamang ni Eddie Ilarde at Ito Ang Inyong Tia Dely ni Dely Magpayo.

The struggling FM radio had the voices of Eddie Mercado, Bingo Lacson and other DJs and announcers like Joe Cantada and Harry Gasser. There were only 2 FM stations after midnight – DZMT and DZHP.

Disco ang hit sa mga kabataan noon. Especially when the strobe light was invented, lahat ng dance floor ay meron nito. For the lower middle class, sa bahay na lang idinadaos ang sayawan matapos silang magkabit ng strobe at dancing lights.

Ang Where Else na nasa Hotel Intercontinental Manila ang isa sa pinakasikat na disco dahil balitang doon umiistambay si Bongbong Marcos. Sa Where Else din unang nag-meet si Vilma Santos at Ralph Recto.

For those in the lower class of the society, nagkakasya na lang sa pag-arkila ng komiks gaya ng Tagalog Klasiks, Pilipino Komiks, Espesyal, Hiwaga, Wakasan atbp. Sa halagang 5 centavos lamang ang arkila at puwede pang ulit-ulitin ang pagbasa.

What a trip to memory lane? But the most nostalgic of them all is watching the yuletide display of COD in Cubao.

Source: Interviews of senior citizens in our neighborhood.

Para sa mga reaksyon, maaari kayong mag-email sa tessclarin@yahoo.com


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