About PETA

About PETA

Our Company, Our Story

Founded in 1967 by Cecile-Guidote Alvarez, the Philippine Educational Theater Association (PETA) is an organization of creative and critical artist-teacher-cultural workers committed to artistic excellence and a people’s culture that  fosters both personal fulfillment and social transformation. It roots its foundation in the use of theater that is distinctly Filipino as a tool for social change and development. The company has lived by this principle as it continues to evolve with the changes that have occurred within and around it. It continues to push for first-rate quality theater while never taking for granted that the art it produces and teaches always serves a greater purpose.

Driven by the vision of a distinct Filipino theater, PETA initially took residence in Dulaang Rajah Sulayman, a T-stage theater resting deep in the ruins of Fort Santiago in Intramuros, Manila. It was within these historic walls that PETA developed its own history. It was also in this beautiful open-air performance space that PETA’s dream began to flourish. The well-defined stage of Rajah Sulayman influenced the diversity of performances that the company produced, prompting the artists to explore possibilities that the unique theater architecture had to offer. In this cultural landmark, PETA began to nurture and cradle the hundreds of artists who, up to this day, continue to share their talents and expertise in theater, television, radio, print media and education.

Through the years, PETA continues to develop its breed of cultural leaders as it steps up to the forefront of Philippine culture. PETA has written, translated, adapted, published, and performed more than 400 plays and has facilitated thousands of workshops both locally and internationally, shaping not only its own history but greatly influencing the history of Philippine theater as well. Theater forms and techniques continue to be enriched as local, national and universal themes find its medium of expression in the company’s engagement as a theater group that performs and educates.

Today, PETA’s performing arm, the KALINANGAN ENSEMBLE carries out its season of performances at its own Theater Center. It also offers mobile shows for schools and communities in Manila and the provinces. THE SCHOOL OF PEOPLE’S THEATER, PETA’s main training arm for amateurs, professionals, and communities alike, offers a wide range of courses on theater arts and applied theater. The PETA METROPOLITAN TEEN THEATER LEAGUE PROGRAM and the CHILDREN’S THEATER PROGRAM combine performances with training modules for young people, their adult caregivers and educators, giving special attention to the issue of children’s rights and youth participation. Likewise, the ARTS ZONE PROJECT is dedicated to the use of theater and the arts to advocate child safety and protection from violence. PETA also has the MEKONG PARTNERSHIP PROJECT, a regional program which facilitates the development of various artistic forms in mobilizing the performing arts community for advocacy and social transformation in the Greater Mekong Sub-region. PETA is able share its expertise in theater and education through a continuous link-up with national and international artistic, educational, cultural, and development organizations. PETA is all about outreach and networking.

In 2005, PETA moved to its new home — The PETA Theater Center, a landmark in Philippine Arts and Culture where PETA continues to pursue its dream for people and society: a vision which transcends race, class and gender so that lives may be enriched and empowered with each gesture, word, image, sound, expression and creative learning experience.


PETA: Mission and Vision

The Philippine Educational Theater Association (PETA) is an educational theater organization composed of members who are dedicated to the pursuit of excellent theater aesthetics and pedagogy towards the empowerment of people and society.

PETA envisions:

a. A fully actualized human being who is able to liberate the creative power of the self and of others towards fulfilling his/her mission in life; continually purifies his/her inner being; recognizes, respects and defends human rights; actively participates in societal endeavors and receives equal recognition and remuneration; cares for the welfare of others, as well as the environment ensuring the future of the next generation; and has the time for rest and recreation.

b. A free society where justice and equality prevail; the culture promotes and protects human rights; peace and security reign, free from violence, oppression and exploitation; there is fair treatment towards all regardless of sex, age, religion, ideology, race and ability;  where a thriving economy responds to the needs of its people and there is just distribution of wealth; a government exists that genuinely protects the welfare of its citizens; a healthful environment concerned, protected and managed through sustainable development strategies for economic growth and human development.

c. A liberating culture that evolves from the depth and wealth of the people’s history; is dynamic, progressive and responsive to change; promotes critical thinking and greater participation of all sectors of society; enhances creativity and empowers citizens to change society for people’s benefit; and engenders a strong cultural identity united by the recognition and respect for cultural diversity.

PETA’s main objectives to pursue its vision:

a. Create a people’s theater that is directed towards a free society and a liberating culture grounded in the people’s genuine life experiences and aspirations for human dignity and well being;

b. Develop a people’s theater aesthetics that showcases the richness and diversity of Filipino culture through the creation of original Filipino plays while at the same time explores a broad range of theater styles and themes both local and global which are relevant to the people;

c. Develop a people’s theater pedagogy that puts a premium on people’s creativity and critical thinking towards transformative cultural and social action;

d. Bring to life a people’s theater that enhances and sustains the growth of the individual and at the same time fosters community building values that are participatory, collaborative, transparent and democratic.

Organizational Profile

PETA is non-stock, non-profit, non-governmental organization; a registered donee institution based in the Republic of the Philippines. It is an association of artist-teachers who share a common vision: the full actualization of a human person and thrive in the spirit ofkapatiran (brotherhood).

Board of Directors

Marlon N.  Rivera

Abby Jimenez
Vice Chairperson

Cecilia B. Garrucho

Atty. Fulgencio S. Factoran, Jr.

Noel Kintanar


Vicki H. Aldaba

Jose Mari L. Chan

Xavier P. Loinaz

Soxie H. Topacio

Tony P. Tuviera

Ma. Gloriosa Santos-Cabangon

Management Committee

Ma. Gloriosa Santos-Cabangon
Executive Director

Melvin E. Lee
Chief Operations Officer 

Ma. Isabel A. Legarda
Artistic Director

Brenda V. Fajardo
Curriculum Director

Wilson U. Billones
School of People’s Theater Director

Julie Anne G. Bautista
Marketing and Public Relations Director

Fe G. Canta
Finance and Administration Director

Marichu Belarmino
Arts Zone Project Program Director

Gail Guanlao-Billones
Children’s Theater Program Director

Queng B. Reyles
Theater Center Program Director


Philippine Legitimate Stage Artists Group, Inc. (PHILSTAGE)

Consortium of Asian Foundations and Organizations (CAFO)

International Association of Theater for Children and Young People (ASSITEJ)

International Drama/Theater and Education Association (IDEA)


Awards and Recognitions

•Outstanding Play Production (Saan Tayo Ihahatid ng Disyembre?), Gawad Buhay Awards 2010

•Outstanding Ensemble Performance in a Musical  (Ismail at Isabel/ Si Juan Tamad , Ang Diyablo at ang Limang Milyong Boto), Gawad Buhay Awards 2010

•Outstanding Musical Production (Skin Deep), Gawad Buhay Awards 2009

•Lifetime Achievement Awards – Aliw Awards 2007

•Benigno S. Aquino Jr. Award for Social Artistry – Philippine Federation of Catholic Schools Alumni/ae Association, 2007

•Gawad Tanglaw ng Lahi – Ateneo de Manila, 2007

•Japan Foundation Special Awards for Culture, 2005

•Best Production, Non-Musical – Aliw Awards 2004

•Best Theater Production, Children’s Category (Mga Kuwentong Asyano) – National Commission for Culture and the Arts (NCCA) Gawad Alab ng Haraya, 2002

•Best Television Drama – Star Awards 1996

•Best Telemovie – Bahaghari Awards 1996

•Best Drama Anthology – Star Awards 1993

•Gawad Cultural Center of the Philippines (CCP) for Art (Theater), 1991

•Silver Prize (Best Play) – Filipino Critics Circle, 1991

•Gold Prize (Best Play) – Young Critics Circle, 1991

•Gawad CCP for Television, 1990

•Arts and Culture Award from the City of Manila, 1989

•Gawad CCP for Best Featured Videos (1st, 2nd and 3rd), 1989

•Best Performing Arts Group – First Asean Awards 1987

•National Book Awards for Documentary – Manila Critics Circle 1984/1986

•Best Design in Children’s Theater – Prague Quadrienalle Czechoslovakia 1984

•Presidential Recognition of Merit, 1980

•Best Dramatic Anthology – CAT Awards 1968 – 1972