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Vanessa Rose Roflo PHILIPPINES (FILIPINO) CULTURAL AND FOLK DANCES In the East, the Chinese have their

symbolical dragon dance; the Japanese have t he ancestral dance Bon Odori. In the West, the Americans have their Square Dance . The Scottish people have their world-famous dances (Highland and Country Dance , Jig and Reel). On the other hand, the Philippines will not be left behind! The Pearl of the Orient boasts of a variety of Philippine folk dances. The Filipinos pay tributes and owe itself to cultural heritage. One way of showi ng such love and respect for the country gave birth to the development of Philip pine ethnic folk dances. And there are several of these; namely, Binasuan, Subli , Itik-itik, Tinikling, Maglalatik, Cariosa etc. Binasuan is a native dance of Pangasinan. This dance literally means dancing with glasses. The steps are executed with glasses filled with rice wine balanced on t he head and the hands of the dancers. Danced to show balance and to reflect rura l gaiety, Binasuan is performed usually in wedding ceremonies and occasions in t he barangay. Subli owes its meaning to native words subsub meaning to fall with the head and bal i or broken. This meaning is reflected in the dance steps. The dancers move feebl y and tortuously as if without vigor. This dance, however, traces its roots to B atangas where it was originally played as a ritual dance which evolved into a sy mbol of religious tradition performed during town fiestas. Itik-Itik is one of the Philippine folk dances which have an interesting origin. According to stories, a Filipina maiden-dancer of Surigao del Norte was asked t o perform a native dance in one special occasion. She started to improvise new s teps and imitate the courtship movements of a local species of duck known as itik . The spectators began to imitate her and that is how the dance came to be. Tinikling is another Philippine folk dance that is inspired by an endemic bird c alled tikling. The steps of this dance are an imitation of the movements of a tikli ng bird that hops and escapes the traps set by hunters. Moving with poise and gra ce, the dancers skip in-between two bamboo poles that are held to pound rhythmic ally against each other. This dance is a specialty of Leyte. Maglalatik is danced to mimic the early battle against Christians and Moros to w in coconut meat or latik during the time of Spanish colonization. This is also per formed to pay homage to the town saint of Bian, Laguna San Isidro Labrador. This dance is divided into four parts: baligtaran, palipasan, paseo and escaramusa. T his is performed by all-male dancers who wear blue pants to represent the Christ ians and red pant for the Moros. All dancers, however, have coconut shells mount ed on their body parts. Pandanggo sa ilaw. The word pandanggo is taken from the Spanish word fandango. The d ance is characterized by the lively steps performed in conjunction with the clap ping while the dancers are following the beat. Again, this dance calls for grace ful balancing acts so that the lights held by the hand will not fall. This dance is originally from Oriental, Mindoro. These aforementioned Philippine folk dances are ethnic in nature and origin. On the other hand, there are several Philippine folk dances that were influenced by some Western countries as some of these had colonized Philippines in the past. One such country is Spain. Some of the so-called influenced Philippine folk dances are the following: Pandango sa Ilaw, Cariosa, Balitao and Rigodon. To conclude, these folk dances whether ethnic in origin or not reflect the livel y culture that theFilipinos have. These dances may be diverse but through these cultural forms, the Filipinos are unified and proud by way of having Philippine folk dances that are truly one of the bests in the world. INTRODUCTION AND DANCES Countries in the world have their own cultures made more colorful, beautiful and vibrant because of Folk Dances that are reflection of who they are. In the east , the Chinese have their symbolic Dragon Dance, the Japanese have the ancestral dance Bon Odori. In the west the Americans have their Square Dance. On the other hand, the Philippines will not be left behind. "The Pearl of The Orient" boast of a varitey of Filipino Folk Dances.

The Philippines consist of 7107 islands, and is broken down in three groups of i slands. The Luzon, Mindano, and Visayas. Each of these regions contain different languages,history, regligon, and traditions. With each region having different influence in thier arts, crafts, and ancestorical dances. Lets take a trip throu gh each region and explore the different styles, costumes, Dances and Talents fr om Each Region.... As we explore each of the regions and styles, please remember alot of these Cultural and Folk dances represents hardships and daily back brea king tasks, that has turned into a art form. Many of the dances you will read ab out here were actuall activities or chores that the Filipino endured to survive the poor economy and state of the nation..... LUZON -- Consisting of the tribes such as Ifugao, Benquet, Kalinga, Bontoc, Apay o, Kalinga, sometimes these are call Igorot. " But sometimes that is considered degrading ." Cordillerea name also used for some parts the Luzon Region... Northern most region of the Philippines, Luzon gets its Cultural influence from Hindu-Buddist, Spanish and many ethnic regilous tribes. All with differences and beliefs. But in all the Cultural and Folk Dances from this region represents al l different factions in one way or the other. Dances of Luzon ( see side bar for pictures of many of the dances ) * Dance: Idaw This dance sometimes has many names and different versions. Most common is this dance depicts the hunting ritual performed before a tribal war. The tribes men w ould go out and look up and watch for the scared Idaw bird. Which is said to lea d the tribe to victory. Also look at the clothing, Philippines being a very hot climate, plus the use of as little material as possible, the traditional clothin g was not made to cover much of the body.... * Dance : Banga This dance displays the Igorot women on their way to the river to fetch the dail y water supply for thier familys. It shows the skill and strength of the women a s they would carry heavy laiden clay pots (Banga) full of water. Their grace and agility while balancing the heavy pots, sometimes stacks 5 high, is a testiment of the Filipino and how hardships become a art form and talent. As a young girl you would start with only one pot. Of course as you become older and more exper ienced, along with the fact that you could provide more water for your family in one trip. Pots could be stacked as high as 5 or 6. The more pots you could carr y showed your skill and also you standing amoung the women of that area. They wo uld all gather and march to the river each day, singing a native song which is r epresented by the flute and banging of bamboo on iron pots in the dance...... * Dance : Idudu The family is the basic structure of family life among the Itneg / Tinggian poep le. The caring for theChildren is shared by both the mother and father. While th e men are clearing the fields, breaking the soil with bamboo and their feet, the women watch the children. Soon as the men are done, they take care of the child ren while the women do back breaking work. You can see in the dance how the wome n will take the bamboo baskets in a shaking fashion like drying the rice, while the men are going in circles in background like they are toiling the land. Then you will see the women put down the baskets fold the cloth into a baby while the husband stands aside. Then the women will turn over the baby to the husband, pi ck up the bamboo and start toiling the land while the men hold and cradle the ba bys......... * Dance : Ragsaksakan The word means " Merriment". This dance would be performed after a successful he adhunt and also for a peace pact between waring tribles. The colorful hand woven blankets " blankets of life" are worn around the neck while baskets to carry pr oduce or rice are worn upon the head. Some versions of this dance use the " Bang a " instead of the basket. Pride and Honor - Mindanao Region MINDANAO -- This is the southern most region of The Philippines. Being the secon d largest island in the Philippines, its Culture consists of mostly Muslium or " Moro " people, also composed of other ethnic groups such as the Maranao, Tausug

, Banguingui, and indigenous tribes know as Lumad. You will see alot of Arabian, and Middle Eastern influence in thier costumes and dances. Dances of Mindanao Dance : Singkil Singkil dance takes its name from the bells worn on the ankles of the Muslim pri ncess. Perhaps one of the oldest of truly Filipino dances, the Singkil recounts the epic legend of the "Darangan" of the Maranao people of Mindanao. This epic, written sometime in the 14th century, tells the fateful story of Princess Gandin gan, who was caught in the middle of a forest during an earthquake caused by the diwatas, or fairies or nymph of the forest. The rhythmic clapping of criss-crossed bamboo poles represent the trees that wer e falling, which she gracefully avoids. Her slave loyally accompanies her throug hout her ordeal. Finally, she is saved by the prince. Dancers wearing solemn fac es and maintaining a dignified pose being dancing at a slow pace which soon prog resses to a faster tempo skillfully manipulate apir, or fans which represent the winds that prove to be auspicious. The dancers weave expertly through criss-cro ssed bamboos. * Dance : Kini Kini Kini means the Royal Walk. Maranao women performed this dance with scarves. The beauty of the scarve and the talent and grace in which it is displayed. Shows th eir elite social upbringing * Dance : Pangalay A pangalay native to the Badjao, sometimes known as the "Sea Gypsies." Pangalay is a dance that emphasizes the agility of the upper body. The rhythmic bounce of the shoulder with simultaneous alternating waving of arms are the basic movemen t of this dance. The pangalay is commonly performed at weddings and other social gatherings. You will also see some parts of the Sinkgil in this dance also. Ano ther part of this dance is also called the Muslium four Bamboos. * Dance : Asik This is performed by a solo madien, adorned with fine beads and m ake up, long head scarf. She would dance to win the favor of her Sultan master. Many time the girls would dance to win the hearts of her master or to make up fo r a wrong she had done. She would give her whole heart and soul into this perfor mance to soften the heart of her master to accept her... LOVE OF LIFE AND COUNTRY - VISAYAS REGION VISAYAS -- Being the Central Island of The Philippines, Visayas is also broken d own into three sections. Central , Eastern, Western. Consisting of Austronesians , Negritos, these we Animist Tribal Group. Many others tribes from around surrou nding island would come after the downfall or break up of thier tribes. Visayas became a melting pot for many different Tribes and Cultural backgrouds. You will find Arbian, Spanish, and some Western influences in the dances of this region. You will see that the dances of the Visayas are more upbeat and exciting, not s o much in Drama and tribal meanings as other regions. Visayas Dances - ( see pictures in the side bar ) * Dance : Sayaw Sa Banko This dance is native to the barrio of Pangapisan, Lingayen, Pangasinan, and dema nds skill from its performers who must dance on top of a bench roughly six inche s wide. * Dance : Tinikling Tinnikling is considered the national folkdance with a pair of dancers hopping b etween two bamboo poles held just above the ground and struck together in time t o music. Originated from Leyte Province, this dance is in fact a mimic movement of tikling birds hopping over trees, grass stems or over bamboo traps set by farme rs. Dancers perform this dance with remarkable grace and speed jumping between b

amboo poles. * Dance : Subli The term subli is from two tagalog words subsub meaning falling on head and bali, whi h means broken. Hence, the dancers appear to be lame and crooked throughout the dance. This version is originally a ritual dance of the natives of Bauan, Batang as, which is shown during fiestas as a ceremonial worship dance to the towns icon , the holy cross * Dance : Maglalatik Originally performed in Binan, Laguna as a mock-war dance that demonstrates a fi ght between the Moros and the Christians over the prized latik or coconut meat d uring the Spanish rule, this dance is also shown to pay tribute to the towns patr on saint, San Isidro Labrador. It has a four-part performance such as the palipa san and the baligtaran showing the intense battle, the paseo and the escaramusathe reconciliation. Moro dancers wear read trousers while the Christian dancers show up in blue. All dancers are male; with harnesses of coconut shells attache d on their chests, backs, thighs and hips. Itik-Itik At one baptismal party in the Surigao del Norte province, a young lady named Kan ang (the nickname for Cayetana), considered the best dancer and singer of her ti me, was asked to dance the Sibay. She became so enthusiastic and spirited during the performance that she began to improvise movements and steps similar to the movements of itik, the duck, as it walks with short, choppy steps and splashes w ater on its back while calling to its mate. The people liked the dance so much t hat they all imitated her. There are six separate foot sequences in the series o f Itik-Itik steps. Binasuan Origin: Bayambang, Pangasinan This colorful and lively dance from Bayambang in the Pangasinan province shows o ff the balancing skills of the dancers. The glasses that the dancers gracefully, yet carefully, maneuver are half-filled with rice wine gracefully who whirl and roll on the floor. Maglalatik During the Spanish regime, the present barrios of Loma and Zapote of Bian, Laguna , were separated. With coconut shells as implements the people of these two barr ios danced the Maglalatik, or Magbabao, a war dance depicting a fight between th e Moros and the Christians over the latik (residue left after the coconut milk h as been boiled). The first two parts of the dance, the Palipasan and the Baligtaran show the heat ed encounter between the two groups. The last two parts, the Paseo and the Sayaw Escaramusa show the reconciliation between the two groups. According to the leg end the Moros came out victorious, thus getting the coveted latik. The Christian s, not contented with the result of the war, sent an envoy to the Moros to offer peace and to baptize them. The best Maglalatik dancers are found in Zapote. In the daytime during the town fiesta of Bian, the Maglalatik dancers go from house to house performing this dan ce for money or a gift. In the evening they dance Maglalatik in the religious pr ocession as it moves along the streets. They perform the dance as an offering to the patron saint of the farmers, San Isidro de Labrador. Pandanggo sa ilaw Origin: Lubang Island, Mindoro (Visayas) This popular dance of grace and balance comes from Lubang Island, Mindoro in the Visayas region. The term pandanggo comes from the Spanish word fandango, which is a dance characterized by lively steps and clapping that varies in rhythm in 3 /4 time. This particular pandanggo involves the presence of three tinggoy, or oi l lamps, balanced on the head and the back of each hand. After a good catch, fishermen of Lingayen would celebrate by drinking wine and b y dancing, swinging and circling a lighted lamp. Hence, the name "Oasiwas" which in the Pangasinan dialect means "swinging." This unique and colorful dance call s for skill in balancing an oil lamp on the head while circling in each hand a l ighted lamp wrapped in a porous cloth or fishnet. The waltz-style music is simil ar to that of Pandanggo sa Ilaw.

Sakuting Origin: Abra A dance of the Ilokano Christians and non-Christians from the province of Abra, Sakuting was originally performed by boys only. It portrays a mock fight using s ticks to train for combat. The stacatto-inflected music suggests a strong Chines e influence. The dance is customarily performed during Christmas at the town pla za, or from the house-to-house. The spectators give the dancers aguinaldos, or g ifts of money or refreshments especially prepared forChristmas. Sublian Origin: Batangas This version is from Talumpok, a ritual dance. A favorite dance of the people in nearly all the barrios of the municipality of Bauan, Batangas, in the month of May and during the town and barrio fiestas. It is a ceremonial worship dance per formed in homage to the Holy Cross referred to in the vernacular as Mahal Na Poo ng Santa Cruz. It originated some three hundred years ago in the barrio of Dingi n, Alitagtag, Batangas. The name Subli is derived from two Tagalog words subsub (s tooped or in a crouching position) and bali (broken). Thus the men dancers are in trunk-forward-bend position thoughout the dance. They seem to be lame and crooke d. Tinikling This Visayan dance was found in Leyte where this dance originated. Dancers imi tate the tikling birds legendary grace and speed as they skillfully play, chase e ach other, run over tree branches, or dodge bamboo traps set by rice farmers. He nce it is named after the bird, tikling. this version of the dance is done betwe en a pair of bamboo poles. Pasigin Origin: Pasig A dance interpreting toil in the life of the fishermen in the river called Pasig . Manifesting the native means of catching the fish. **Reference http://www.philippine-travel-guide.com/philippine-folk-dances.html http://philippinesculturalfolkdances.blogspot.com/ http://www.scribd.com/doc/17164109/Philippine-Folk-Dances