Adios Radyoman Julian “Teban” Daan
A great radio drama script writer, director, talent and comedian — Julian Bacus Daan, who was well known by his radio name “Esteban Escudero” or “Teban,” passed away at the age of 74.
Daan died of heart failure with complications while being confined in a private hospital in Cebu City last Wednesday, August 21. He was brought to the hospital since Monday, August 19, after suffering a mild stroke.
Daan’s love and passion for radio drama can be manifested by his more than 50 years in the radio industry. His substantial, entertaining and stress reliever dramas made him well-known in the Visayas and Mindanao as all Radio Mindanao Network (RMN) stations carried his drama productions all over the region.
Such prominence, as acknowledged by him, was his ticket to join politics to fulfill his desire for public service. He became a barangay councilor, a board member of the province of Cebu for more than 10 years, and a city councilor for two consecutive terms.
His busy schedule as politician did not stop him from continuing to produce radio dramas. Even his illness did not stop him from his desire to continue to entertain people.
To recall, in 2013, Daan underwent a bypass surgery and was thereafter advised by his doctor to relax. From that time he had been in and out of the hospital.
Being his station manager at DYHP RMN Cebu and concerned about his health, I gave him ample time to recuperate. Hence, he was not being heard on-air for a quite period of time.
I remember that he asked me many times that he wanted to go back on-air, but I answered him that I needed to know first the recommendation of his doctor. But he told me that he could die earlier if he would not be allowed to write a radio drama and go back on-air.
True enough, when I reinstated him as drama writer, director, and talent, he became energetic. I observed that his capacity to write a radio drama, his ability to direct and his voice as a drama talent were never affected when he went back on-air.
Hence, I was shaken when Aida Tampus, DYHP RMN Cebu program director, called me up and told me about the sad news. I immediately rushed to the hospital where he was confined to see his remains in person.
When I arrived in his hospital room and finally saw his lifeless body lying on his bed, I was still like St. Thomas, that I touched his body before I finally believed. Then I inevitably recalled the well-known radio drama that he starred, “Manok ni San Pedro.”
To recall the synopsis of that story, Daan who played the role of the main character “Esteban ‘Teban’ Escudero” was a poor boy whose love interest was a beautiful lady who happened to be a daughter of a millionaire named Don Miguel. The latter wanted his daughter to marry to a millionaire guy, too, and never to the poor Teban.
When Don Miguel learned that his daughter was so in love with Teban, he got angry to the extent that he hired goons to kill the poor boy. As a result Teban was murdered.
When Teban arrived at the gate of heavens, St. Peter wondered when he opened the book of life because his time has not yet come.
St. Peter decided to give him a chance and sent him back to the earth. He also gave his solid white rooster to Teban.
When Teban was back in this world with his fighting cock, he always won in any cockfight. He became prominent and rich because of his lucky rooster. He used his loads of money to help the poor. Don Miguel this time became the worst competitor and enemy of Teban.
Such radio drama, a fictional story but presented as love story mixed with comedy, dominated in the airwaves in the 70’s. It was instrumental to Teban’s prominence that even until today it can still be recalled by our radio audience, based on our surveys.
Since then “Tebans” comedy has been the signature attraction of our Cebuano dramas to our listeners for the longest time. To name a few of his very entertaining dramas: “Tal Polano, the boxer,” “Samuel Bilibid,” “Goat the wonderful” and the latest, “Kung ako ang pasultion.”
While I was sitting beside the remains of Daan, I could not stop myself from wishing that the “Manok ni San Pedro” story would be true. But the reality is, unlike in the said fiction story, his time has finally come that he has to report back to his creator.
Adios Julian “Teban” Daan!
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