Carla Guevara-Laforteza, last seen on the PETA stage as part of 3 Stars and A Sun, now joins Rak of Aegis as a new cast member.
She will play Mary Jane or MJ, the barangay captain of Barangay Venezia. She alternates with Sweet Plantado, Shiela Valderrama, and fellow Rak first-timer Tricia Jimenez.
Carla, who played the coveted role of Kim in Miss Saigon, shall portray Mary Jane in her debut appearance tonight, June 30, at the PETA Theater Center.
She recalls that when she first watchd Rak of Aegis on its second run, "Mula noon napanood ko, sobrang na in love na ako sa show."
Carla said she was so excited that when Myke Solomon (who plays her character's son Kenny) told her to audition. "Nung tinawagan ako na can I come to PETA, oh my God, sobra akong excited, yun pala it was for 3 Stars..."
She admitted to Myke then, "gusto ko rin sumali ng Rak. Walang katapusan, na buong run ng 3 Stars, kumakanta ako ng Rak of Aegis songs, pati sa audition namin ni Myke sa ibang musical, yun mga attack ko sa song, pa-Rak para makita yung boses ko..."
Carla didn't have a hard time identifying who she'll have a challenging time working with. While she is excited to work with all of the Rak cast, "yung challenge sa akin, yung totoo? One of my best friends si Loy Martinez."
Loy is a returning Rak cast member, playing Kiel, and Carla reveals why she finds it challenging, "ever since we were teens, I can never share a scene with him because tatawa lang ako ng tatawa!"
She explains how whenever they have corporate shows, "tapos kami magka-duet, hindi namin natatapos yung song kasi natatawa kami kaya challenge sa akin eto na he's gonna play one of my leading men!"
We're excited to see how this chemistry unfolds onstage as Carla continues, "yung nakakatawa kasi nakakatawa na nga yung scene, yung songs, di ko alam kung paano ko gagawin, challenge yun."
As she joins Rak of Aegis, and plays one of four MJs in a run composed of 82 shows, Carla says she is up to the challenge, "ang importante naiiba ako doon sa ibang magplay ng role."
So what can we expect from her that's going to be different from the other MJs?
"Hmmm, I can't answer that honestly, hindi sa may tinatago, it's just I haven't found my character yet, so basta hopefully, magustuhan ng audience pag ako nakita nila as MJ."
She explains that one way she will find her own take on MJ as she prepares is to find similarities in herself, "she's also a mom, not that I'm worried how to make ends meet but of course as a mom, and as a wife, ako yung nagbubudget sa bahay so ganoon mga dilemmas naiintindihan ko, I find stuff that I have experienced and try to put that into the character."
Carla feels that the comeback of Rak of Aegis during this time is ideal and will have a lot of impact, "I think it would be a great reliever, pang relax naman, pampatawa naman, kasi like during elections, ang lumabas was 3 Stars and a Sun, it was so serious, politics and all."
"Rak has everything, comedy, drama, it's musical, it's fun, everything na hinahanap ng Pinoy in a show, in an entertaining show, andito."