Friday, September 7, 2007

RANT 101 - the memo that never was...

September 4, 2007

Subject: Offense and Resolution

I am saying sorry in advance for whatever reaction this open letter may cause to anyone but I am at the moment in no mood to play politics with my feelings. But as of this writing, I am already all too fed up with the amount of stress that I have to put up with in this company. Stress which I think is utterly unnecessary, have we been working together as a team and not as loose cannons by ourselves.

I am very much offended by all the media releases in relation to Amazing Philippine Theatre. I know that the Korean Managers will not be bothered by it as I will not be bothered by any article that appears in any Korean newspaper.

The articles from the newspapers and the internet have caused me personal and professional anguish because, and I quote:

“According to _________, the Korean chief operating officer and director of sales and marketing of the Amazing Philippine Theatre. The Amazing Show can rival, if not surpass, the ones being put up in Thailand, well-known for musical shows featuring transsexuals and to which the Philippine show took its inspiration.

The wealth of talent as well as the beauty of transsexuals in the country inspired Korean investors headed by its chairman and owner Lee Jong Hyun to put up the Amazing Philippine Theatre in 2001. At the first audition, they hired 80 performers to make up the first pool of talent. Investors decided to rehabilitate the Manila Film Center to make it the venue for the shows with an initial capital investment of about US$ 1.4 million. The selling of the show was concentrated to the Korean market.”

(I didn't even know that we had a COO already... So much like the saying, “who died and made him COO?")


“According to Korean ________, the COO and director of sales and marketing of the Amazing Philippine Theatre, APT owner and Chairman Jong Hyun Lee approached him with the idea of creating a theatre company with the purpose of providing a world class show that would benefit both the foreign and local markets.” -- he wasn't even around in 2001!

I actually do not give a damn about whose mistake it was… the bottom line is that there was a mistake and it belongs to somebody and yet no one wants to claim it and again, no one will be punished because of it. The damage is at the expense of this company whose history we have just altered because of these articles that were read by Filipino readers. And this, I do not take lightly. Not from someone who has given me much headache and stress since the inception of the Amazing Philippine Theatre Boracay Project.

Amazing Philippine Theatre was established with people who are mostly not here anymore to defend themselves. They are fallen, but they are not dead. They were not survivors in this company, but it doesn’t mean that we can erase them from our history. I would not be here today if it wasn’t for the first executive director of this theatre who patiently waited in my living room until I awoke to bring me to Aloha Hotel. The initial show would have not been possible if not for the talents and skills of the first artistic team led by the first director. Good or bad, these people were a part of this theatre’s history. And those facts, I will never undermine or allow to be undermined so long as I am a part of this company.

I have remained silent for more than two years now hoping against hope that we are threading the right direction. Hoping that after six years we have learned enough from our mistakes. Like a good soldier that I wanted to be I remained patient. But my silence has gravely contributed to, my opinion, the worsening of the situation. Amazing has stood its ground after six years and those of us who has poured our sweat, blood and tears into her foundation has the responsibility to ensure the viability of our existence as a company and a family.

I have initially contemplated that with this open letter, I shall attach with it my resignation from this company so that I may be spared further anguish and unnecessary stress brought about by mistakes of people who should have known better… but I will not.

Instead, I shall channel my indignation by formally proposing a rectification of the situation by institutionalizing this company as an entity with a structure, with an organization and with a clear and concise direction. I would like to formally propose an organization which would be coherent and responsive to our needs as a company so that incidents like these may be prevented and unnecessary anguish may be prevented as well.

I propose to professionalize the ranks of the departments by hiring competent personnel that will help us accomplish out bottom line objectives. With this in mind I would like to begin with the Sales and Marketing Department. We will need competent staffing to promote and sell the theatres nationwide. I would recommend that we hire a part-time publicist who will take care of our promotional and other related needs. The publicist’s first task is to damage control what has been done because of the articles and further to promote the “proper” history and accomplishments of this company. Further, to develop a tri-media campaign for promoting Amazing Shows all over the country.

As of now, the managers are already spread too thin to make adequate and competent decisions. Let us not fall prey once again to mistakes we have committed over and over again for the past six years. This year is the worst year of my personal and professional life, and I want to change that. Nobody will change it for me, so if I may… I would like to begin.