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Submission date

10 May 2023 at 10:22:14 am

First name

Alexandra May

Last name




University of the Philippines Diliman





May Cardoso is a playwright and dramaturg currently teaching at the College of Arts and Letters in the University of the Philippines Diliman. She has staged several one-act plays and adaptations. Her latest work is an adaptation of Charlotte Perkins Gilman's "The Yellow Wallpaper," set in 2017 Philippines. She is currently a distance student of the MFA Theatre Arts - Dramatic Writing program at the University of Idaho.

Paper title

Didto Sa Amo (Where I Am From): Retelling and Staging Epefania’s Sugilanon


auto-critique, theatrical adaptation, Philippine short stories in English, bilingualism, text construction


The paper is an auto-critique of my adaptation process for Ang Sugilanon ng Kabiguan ni Epefania, a one-act play based on the short story “The Sugilanon of Epefania’s Heartbreak” by Ian Rosales Casocot. The source text uses English and Cebuano, while the play uses Tagalog and Cebuano. Thus, the paper’s discussion focuses on the ways in which the changes in language informed my artistic choices in adapting the script. Looking at the process using the structuralist theory’s definition of text, it is also interesting to note the contexts that influenced the creation of this adaptation. The context of production takes my subject position into account: I am a Waray-speaking playwright from the Visayas region of the Philippines who is currently based in Metro Manila, who was trained in creative writing with English as its medium of instruction, and who now writes bilingual works. As for the context of consumption, I was aware that the play would be staged in and would involve theatre artists from Manila. Hence, I had to take concerns about its language and understandability for a primarily Tagalog-speaking audience into consideration, along with the limited availability of actors who could speak Cebuano. These respective contexts clearly had a great bearing on the way that I created the adaptation, allowing and limiting many aspects of my writing. Moreover, I find it necessary to analyze my adaptation process for this work. I consider this play and its staging at the Virgin Labfest 2016 to be the starting point of my emergence as a playwright in Manila theatre. This text and my process still informs much of my creative process to this day as someone who continues to write adaptations and bilingual dramatic scripts. Thus, an auto-critique of my own process will provide me with foundational insights on my creative process for plays that I have written after Sugilanon.


Please prepare a projection setup that is compatible with MacBook Air.

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