#TheaterPH - Up Close and Personal - Banaue Miclat Janssen

Banaue Miclat Janssen

As a prelude to the forthcoming silver linings of her career in the arts next year, multi-talented artist Banaue Miclat-Janssen has been connecting her heart, mind and soul into a wholistic process as part of her time capsule in order to become a much more meaningful  artist. 

Having worked with many co-artists over the past two decades in Manila and New York, Banaue has been praised for her openness to communicate thoughts, views and ideas by explaining the purposes of her goals. With her high level of intelligence, excellent memory, charming mannerisms, sensitivity, innovativeness, imaginativeness and loving temperament, Banaue’s career will surely fall properly into its place spelling more successes in the near future.

But even while others seem to have perceived Banaue for keeping a low profile in her career path, she has actually a very keen interest in its advancement. Quiet competence and consistency, that’s what she adheres to. In fact,  Banaue’s closest circle of friends swear by her skills on time management. She combines her duties as a wife, mother, teacher and actor in many thousand ways. 

Banaue is a pure Filipino born in Beijing, China. She credits her heritage to make her heir to a unique tradition that provides intensity to her craft as an artist. The high sense of cultural awareness in China, with its constant drilling in the importance of fundamentals, and a history that goes back thousands of years, opened her senses to the ancient world of the arts. Enriching this is her claim to the Filipino culture—molded and shaped by years of colonialism, of cultural diversity, of political ruptures, and a resilience and steadfastness of spirit. It is this Filipino spirit that empowers her with the creativity that compels her to be immediate and unburdened as an artist.

Banaue’s first stage performance was as a nine year old ballet dancer in Collezion√© ’89, a recital with Philippine National Artist for Dance, Leonor Orosa-Goquingco’s “Ben-Lor Ballet”. She was introduced to the Asian performing arts of dance, song, and spoken word through the Philippine Educational Theater Association’s workshop production of Ramayana/Radiya Mangandiri in 1992. That, at twelve years of age, was when Banaue decided she wants to live the life of a performance artist.

Banaue went on to obtain a B.A. in Theater Arts under the tutelage of Professor Emeritus, Tony Mabesa, at the University of the Philippines in Diliman, and a Master of Fine Arts in Acting (MFA in Acting, a terminal degree) at the Brooklyn College of the City University of New York (Brooklyn College-CUNY). She is currently an Assistant Professor at the Department of Speech Communication and Theatre Arts, College of Arts and Letters in UP Diliman.

As a professional performer, Banaue has won an Aliw Award for Best Performance for a New Concept Production for “Ginugunita Kita” in 2015, a Best Actress Award for the Metropolitan Opera Getty Awards for Supernumeraries for “Salome” in 2009, and a Best Actress citation for NYU’s First Run Film Festival for Clarissa de los Reyes’ “Giving Care.” Banaue has released “Ginugunita Kita,” the album with Jesse Lucas on iTunes and Spotify. 

She has also done plays in various languages—English, Filipino, Spanish, Japanese, and some Filipino dialects. She has performed in different countries including Germany, Japan, and has done performances off-Broadway and at the acclaimed Metropolitan Opera, Lincoln Center in New York. Some of the films she has acted in have been shown in international film festivals in New York, San Francisco, Los Angeles, Hong Kong, Singapore, Thailand, Japan, Korea, France, Italy, the Netherlands, Canada, and many more.

As a director, Banaue has worked with UP’s Dulaang Laboratoryo, Musical Theater Philippines, and most recently, for the first Fringe Manila in 2015, Joshua Lim So’s Palanca Award winning play, “Tungkol kay Angela” under Destiyero Theater Commune. 

Lastly, Banaue loves to share the most precious bonding moments of time with husband Dom and four-year old son Raj.

A Cancer-born lady, Banaue sits alongside the likes of legendary and famous personalities namely Ernest Hemingway, Marshall McLuhan, Princess Diana, Meryll Streep, Robin Williams, Frida Kahlo, Carly Simon, Estee Lauder, Barbra Cartland, Cat Stevens, Cyndi Lauper, and Malala Yousafai.

Coming very soon this July, Banaue is doubly excited and challenged to don a new hat with her latest directorial project for UP Playwrights’ Theatre featuring Linda Faigao-Hall’s “The Female Heart.”

In 2017, as Banaue’s silver lining salvo continues, she will be honored to share the cultural diversity of her career path with many more surprises.

Congratulations Banaue!

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