The Philippine Educational Theater Association (PETA) was founded by Ms. Cecile Guidote-Alvarez on April 7, 1967 with the vision of a Philippine Theater engaged in the development of people and society. In 1971, PETA became the UNESCO-ITI (International Theater Institute) Center in the Philippines, and in the same year it organized the first Third World Theater Festival, held in the 400th year of the foundation of the City of Manila.
When its founder was forced to go on political exile because of Martial Law in 1972, PETA’s new breed of artist-teacher-leaders continued to steer the company towards a People’s Theater committed to social change. The social conditions and political climate during the Martial Law sharpened the people-based theater aesthetics of PETA. It inspired the company to use the power of theater as a means of producing plays for empowerment and development, especially of the most disadvantaged sectors of society/those in the margins.