World Arts West
SF Ethnic Dance Festival

FESTIVAL DANCERS

LIKHA - Pilipino Folk Ensemble

NATIONAL/ETHNIC IDENTITY: Philippines
ARTISTIC DIRECTOR: Rudi Soriano
First appearance in SF EDF: 1994
Website: likha.org

Founded in 1992 by Rudi Soriano, LIKHA – Pilipino Folk Ensemble believes in the power of dance and music to share the beauty of Philippine culture. Today, LIKHA strives towards this mission with diverse programs and performances. LIKHA has represented the Philippines in 11 international festivals. The company also works to expand its repertoire, researching, developing and nurturing relationships with diverse communities throughout the Philippines, allowing them to maintain authentic costuming, to share within the Bay Area’s communities, with free adult workshops as well as a school program at two different East Bay sites.

2016 PERFORMANCE

DANCE ORIGIN: Sulu Archipelago, Philippines
GENRE: Folkloric (Tausug and Maranao)
TITLE: Hariraya: Kasanduayan; Pangalay; Kuntaw Kabkab
ARTISTIC DIRECTOR: Rudi Soriano
CHOREOGRAPHERS: Michael Palad, Rudi Soriano
MUSIC DIRECTOR: OJ Pahati
DANCERS: Ashley Acosta, Liza Allen, Emmanuel Benisano, Abraham Cabangbang, Christine Carandang, Lolita Castillo, Cat Diaz-Centeno, Raymond Centeno, Irene Coyco, Aiden Cruz, Beverly Cruz, Dylan Cruz, Gary Cruz, Malaya Cruz, Tina Cruz, Isabella Cuenco, Manuel De Vera, Maurice Fortner, Cienna Kahrobaie, Patrice Katigbak, Elsa Manlangit, Warren Manuntag,
Scarlet McClure, Chris Muñoz, Mae Oliveros, Michael Palad, Ida Parcon, Ephraim Piñeda, Leia Piñeda, Rudi Soriano, Paulino Tamayo, Chariss Wong
MUSICIANS: Andrew Capule (agung), Ed Cruz (kulintang), Isaac Cruz (babandil), RP Cuenco (debakan), Angelo Macaraeg (gabbang), Moses McClure (babandil), Melody Valdez (agung)

Photo by Mark Muntean

LIKHA-Pilipino Folk Ensemble presented Hariraya, regional dance forms from Muslim Tausug and Maranao communities in Mindanao, southwestern Philippines. The first dance, Kasanduayan, is from the Maranao ethnic community living near the volcanic Lake Lanao —a festival dance, traditionally performed during a royal procession for entertainment. The Maranao are known for their mysticism, royalty, and beauty, evident in their music and dances, and known for nobility and grace even while walking. The women carry beaded and multi-colored umbrellas for shade, and they dance with fine kini-kini footsteps.

The second dance, Pangalay, is a form developed before the introduction of Christianity and Islam to the Philippines, an ancient form related to classical dances from Thailand, Burma, and Cambodia, based on a Buddhist concept of male and female celestial angels. The dance comes from the Tausug, the People of the Current, who live in coastal villages raised above the shore on stilts. Tausug dancers’ graceful hand gestures show a rare dexterity and flexibility of the shoulders, elbows, and wrists—and the movements are amplified by elongated brass janggay fingernails.

The final dance, Kuntaw Kabkab, is the popular dance form of the indigenous Tausug martial art form called markuntao, and also known as silat, a form also seen in Tausug communities in Malaysia and Indonesia. The fans are called kabkab, and they represent weapons in the dance.

This performance included a Philippine kulintang gong ensemble playing melodies for the Tausug and Maranao dances. Large gongs, called agungs, create interlocking rhythms, while gandinggan—talking gongs—create short melodies. A dabakan drum keeps tempo, and the tausug music also includes a wonderful gabbang bamboo xylophone.

Kasanduayan was originally choreographed by Ramon Obusan and re-choreographed for LIKHA by Artistic Director Rudi Soriano. Kuntaw Kabkab is a premiere presentation for the group—a version learned by Rudi Soriano from Estevez Jonell Nava, with choreography set by Michael Palad. Soriano learned the pangalay form as a child and later from Tausug princess Aida Amilbangsa, and this choreography is also by Michael Palad. Ed Cruz and OJ Pahati learned the music for Kuntaw Kabkab and Pangalay from ethnomusicologist Dr. Bernard Ellorin.

2015 PERFORMANCE

GENRE: Folkloric
TITLE: Kanyaw
CHOREOGRAPHER:
Rudi C. Soriano
COSTUME DIRECTOR: Warren T. Manuntag
DANCERS: Eric Abad, Ashley Acosta, Kevin Alicbusan, Liza Allen, Nikko Beltran, Emmanuel Benisano, Abraham Cabangbang, Christin Carandang, Lolita Castillo, Raymond Centeno, Beverly Cruz, Janice Cruz, Tina Cruz, Isabella Cuenco, Manuel deVera Jr., Maurice Fortner, Vincent Hutalla, Chariss Ilarina, Patrice Katigbak, Cynthia Lucero-Obusan, Elsa Manlangit, Scarlet McClure, Christopher Munoz, Oliver Obusan, Marie Oliveros, Kristin Pahati, Michael Palad, Ida Parcon, Paulino Tamayo
MUSICIANS: Ernesto Andrade, Andrew Capule, Edward Cruz, RP Cuenco, Angelo Macaraeg, Omar Pahati

WORLD PREMIERE

Among the emerald valleys of the Philippines’ Cordillera mountains, diverse groups of people live and work. Tribes of various languages are famous for their expert terracing of the mountainsides, as well as their fierce warfare. Their ceremonies show a keen observation of the land and animals around them.

Cordillerans view land as the source of life, of sustenance, a sacred and integral part of their cultural identity. For Cordillerans, the loss of their land, or their alienation from it, is considered equivalent to taking their lives. This is  why Cordillerans have willingly shed blood to defend their lands from colonizers, and have fought for the right to remain on their ancestral lands.

LIKHA’s Kanyaw is a staged celebration for peace and unity, featuring dances from three Cordillera ethnic groups, showing a peaceful side to life among the rice farmers. Kanyaw is the name of the community gathering of the Kalinga people who dance together, play gongs, enjoy festival foods, and present offerings to benevolent spirits. The ceremony opens with a peace offering. From valley to valley, musical gongs signal a call to gather.

In the first dance, Chalichog, from Lubuagan, Kalinga women dance a peace pact. They stomp with their feet, reinforcing a pathway between tribes, a road to peace.

Next, in Manmanok, a Bago dance dramatizes two male roosters courting a hen. In feathers, blankets, and wings, male dancers claw the ground with rooster-like steps.

The third dance, Banawol, named for the chicken-eating banawol hawk, is a rousing Ifugao dance, honoring guests with crowns of bright plumage.

The finale brings tribal groups together to acknowledge their shared traditions and history. In trust, male and females from different tribal groups can now dance together.

The cotton costume fabric for this performance was woven in the Philippines on hand looms, with colors of red, orange, white, black, and yellow to represent roosters and other birds. The musical group plays Cordillera instruments: a bamboo xylophone called a tongatong and a solibao drum made from the hide of a goat. They also play handheld gangsa gongs. Each gong is tuned to one note, and a tribe’s melodies depend on the number of gongs in their set and how they are tuned.

LIKHA brings authentic Filipino dances and costumes to us through onsite research in remote villages. LIKHA’s Director Rudi Soriano learned Cordillera dances from Cirilo “Manong Sapi” Bawer, a Kalinga elder in Lubuagan, Kalinga Province, in the Philippines.

2013 PERFORMANCE

DANCE ORIGIN: Philippines
GENRE: Contemporary Folkloric (Turmandok/ Suludnon tribe)
TITLE: Binanog – Banog
ARTISTIC DIRECTOR/CHOREOGRAPHER: Rudi Soriano
DANCERS:
Eric Abad, Liza Allen, Noel Asiatico, Liza Atendido, Raisa Baula, Erin Bolick, Ron Cabarloc, Lolita Castillo, Catherine Centeno, Raymond Centeno, Beverly Cruz, Janice Cruz, Tina Cruz, Manuel De Vera Jr., Cassie Dominguez, Maurice Fortner, Vincent Hutalla, Chariss Ilarina, Laurie Laxa, Cynthia Lucero, Elsa Manlangit, Marie Oliveros, Kristin Pahati, Michael Palad, Pehnee Poblete, Maria Rios, Paulino Tamayo, Jenny Young, Martina Zabala, Sunshine Zabala
MUSICIANS: Kevin Alicbusan (agong), Ed Cruz (kulintang), RP Cuenco (durugan), Arledge David (agong), Omar Pahati (tambol), Richard Rios (agong), Angelo Salu

WORLD PREMIERE

This world premiere, Binanog-Banog, is based on three folk dances from the Tumandok/Suludnon tribe of the Philippines. The story opens with a peaceful village scene and ritual sacrifice. Then a banog arrives, a powerful and sacred eagle, and in the first dance—Binanugan—dancers imitate its flight. The next dance, Inagong Sayaw-Sayaw, is a celebration, until the eagle unexpectedly becomes a threat to the village. The third dance, Dinagmay, uses movements from a traditional courtship dance to portray a fierce battle. Warriors implement combat movements, defending the terrorized ardilya squirrel, and the piece ends in the heroic killing of the fearsome bird.

Choreographer Rudi Soriano created this presentation to share these rarely-seen forms of Philippine dance and translate them for a wider audience. The Tumandok/Suludnon, also known as Panayanon Sulud, are an indigenous Visayan group of people living in the Capiz-Lambunao mountainous area of Panay, Visayan Islands, Philippines. The group is small and is called a lost tribe: they kept their traditional culture hidden and unaffected by Spanish colonization. The group is known for its binanog dance, a dance showing a close relationship with the animal world. The banog is the Philippine Eagle, the rare and powerful Philippine National Bird. Now endangered due to deforestation, it is one of the largest eagles in the world, up to 3-1/2 feet long and weighing up to 18 pounds. A different banog dance is also known in Mindanao.

Artistic Director Rudi Soriano learned Binanog-Banog from Mitchu Mordeno on a research trip to the Philippines in 2005. He choreographed this performance in 2013, adding contemporary Philippine folk movements and theatrical elements for the stage. Traditional movements include the small, repetitive side-steps with hands to the side, and the swooping and flying movements that imitate the flight of the bird. In the Philippines, the eagle dancer wears a simple costume of silky cloth with long draping sleeves: today’s costume was made in the Philippines of rooster feathers. The music is also traditional to the Tumandok/Suludnon tribe, with instrumentalists setting the dynamics and the beat, improvising on four gongs and two goat skin drums, sticks, and wood.

2012 PERFORMANCE

TITLE: Semba
DANCERS:
Eric Abad, Kevin Alicbusan, Noel Asiatico, Liza Atendido, Ceska Baula, Raisa Baula, Raymond Centeno, Beverly Cruz, Tina Cruz, Cassie Dominguez, Kyla Gerbacio, Vincent Hutalla, Chariss ilarina, Laurie Laxa, Kristin Pahati, Michael Palad, Pehnee Poblete, Maria Rios, Marie Oliveros-Reyes, Paulino Tamayo, Mike Versoza
MUSICIANS:  Ed Cruz (kulintang), RP Cuenco (gong), Ledge David (gong), John Laxa (kulintang kayo), Omar Pahati (drum), Jayden Poblete (babandil), Richard Rios (gong), Angelo Salumbides (gong)

Artistic director Rudi Soriano travels every other year with a research team to the Philippines to study indigenous dance, ritual, and tradition—to give his American-born dancers firsthand experience with their heritage and culture. For the 2012 Festival, LIKHA presents dances learned in May 2007 from Batak natives on the island of Palawan in the southeast Philippines.

This presentation is titled Semba, and it was created and choreographed by Rudi Soriano and Jay Loyola. Semba is a stately invocation, reflecting a profound reverence and connection with the natural world. The Batak are one of the Philippine’s ancient tribes, and for thousands of years, they have lived deep in the Philippine forest as nomadic hunters, fishermen, and farmers. They keep their distance from the modern world, and although their forest home has decreased alarmingly in recent years, they continue to live a nomadic way of life. As Batak nomadic groups move from place to place, they dance for the local spirits. They dance to ask permission or approval to inhabit a location, and for guidance before fishing, hunting, or planting. If the spirits don’t answer with a sign—a wind, an animal cry—the dance is repeated.

When the Batak perform this ceremony, they dance in specific and diverse locations in nature. In this choreography, several dances are incorporated into one. Here, three priestesses act as mediators between the community and the spirits. Some dancers listen and some look up to the sky, searching for signs that their dance has been acknowledged. In the Philippines today, Batak natives wear western clothing, but men of previous generations wore a loincloth “g-string” made of the bark of a tree. They also wore a belt with a bamboo basket or pouch to carry their beetle nut. Women were topless, and they wore skirts with a colored wrap, and adorned themselves with shell and wooden necklaces.

When this piece was performed in 2008, at the 30th annual San Francisco Ethnic Dance Festival, the village chief of the Batak tribe traveled across the Pacific to perform Semba on stage with LIKHA. When he returned to his community, he wrote a song about his extraordinary experience of flying halfway around the world to share his traditions, and astounded the Batak children with a video of the performance, encouraging them to maintain their heritage and pride in their culture.

2011 PERFORMANCE

LIKHATITLE: Gampang
DANCERS:
Eric Abad, Liza Allen, Noel Asiatico, Liza Atendido, Raisa Baula, Erin Bolick, Ron Cabarloc, Lolita Castillo, Catherine Centeno, Raymond Centeno, Beverly Cruz, Janice Cruz, Tina Cruz, Manuel De Vera Jr., Cassie Dominguez, Maurice Fortner, Vincent Hutalla, Chariss Ilarina, Laurie Laxa, Cynthia Lucero, Elsa Manlangit, Marie Oliveros, Kristin Pahati, Michael Palad, Pehnee Poblete, Maria Rios, Paulino Tamayo, Jenny Young, Martina Zabala, Sunshine Zabala
MUSICIANS:
Kevin Alicbusan (agong), Ed Cruz (kulintang) RP Cuenco (durugan), Arledge David (agong), Omar Pahati (tambol), Richard Rios (agong), Angelo Salumbides (durugan & sigitan)

This performance, called Gampang, depicts a community ritual for good health, harmonious living, and bountiful harvest. LIKHA brings this dance from the indigenous Subanen communities of Mandih, Sindangan, Zamboanga del Norte, Mindanao Island, Philippines. Subanen ceremonies bridge the gap between two realms, mortal and supernatural. The Subanen are also animists who believe in spirits in nature. The name Subanen comes from suba (river). The Subanen settle inland, near rivers and mountain streams, where they farm on terraced hillsides.

Gampang
is performed by the riverside. Three wooden posts of differing heights hold offerings to the spirits of uncooked rice, chicken or pork, and an egg. The tallest post is for higher spirits, the shorter ones for the lower. A timuway (leader) dances with folded palm leaves, and then dips the leaves in the stream: this is a protective blessing before the community sets out to work in the fields. Assistants follow the timuway, burning incense and sounding porcelain bowls with sticks of fragrant wood. Female dancers whisk dried palm leaves (siosay). The men strike bamboo poles in rhythmic cadence as the women nimbly thread their steps between them. Each dance, offering, sound, and smell is designed to please the spirits, to attract their spiritual presence into the rite. Five musicians join the performance with Subanen musical instruments: a big brass gong (agong); a set of eight small brass gongs of graduated size (kulintang); a hollow log or bamboo tube (durugan); a hollow bamboo with few slits and plucked strings (sigitan); and the native drum (tambol).

In May of 2009, choreographer Rudi C. Soriano went to the village of Mandih, Sindangan Zamboanga del Norte Philippines to research Subanen dance and ritual. Rudi learned the dance and ritual from Cristina Andus, Audie Soledad, Anthony & Malina Gallemit, Arturo Lamdag, and Ian Dalman.

2010 PERFORMANCE

Titles: Banga, Salip
GENRE:
Kalinga
Dancers
: Liza Atendido, Raisa Baula, Lolita Castillo, Beverly Cruz, Jennifer Cruz, Tina Cruz, Vicent Hutalla, Chariss Ilarina, Laurie Laxa, Cynthia Lucero, Kristin Pahati, Mae Reyes, Maria Rios, Tina Zabala
Musicians: Kevin Alicbusan, Edward Cruz, Manuel De Vera, Jr., John Laxa, Omar Pahati, Michale Palad, Richard Rios, Angelo Salumbides, Paulino Tamayo

LIKHA presents two dances from the Kalinga tribe of Northern Luzon, Philippines.

Banga
(meaning "pot") shows the dexterity of the Kalinga women as they balance earthenware pots on their heads. They walk along mountain paths to fetch water for a wedding feast, and they meet other women carrying firewood and baskets of fruits, fish, and meat.

In Salip, a Kalinga bride-to-be balances a stack of pots in a courtship dance. With movements reminiscent of a rooster and hen, the couple gestures to each other in love, and the woman surrenders her skirt (a kain or tapis) to the man. These dances are often seen during the Canao Festival, a celebration of good harvest, birth, and wedding.

The women's skirt is hand woven in the distinctive reddish orange of the Kalinga, and hand-beaded with shells or buttons to make a distinct sound when walking. The women also adorn themselves with glass and amber beads. Before western influence, women were topless.

The Kalinga live in the Luzon Cordillera of the northern Philippines. They are known as the "Peacocks of the North" because of their elaborate and beautiful clothing. Historically, they marry only within their social groups and value group security over individual need. They also participate in peace pact trade alliances with other communities. They farm a variety of crops, raise livestock, and create beautiful basketry and pottery, along with wood and metal craftwork.

The musicians play the gansa, a handheld gong with a narrow rim, tuned to a specific note. (The number of gansa in a set is different for each Cordillera ethnic group.) The bamboo xylophone, called pattangok, rovides melody, chords, and a beat for the dance.

In 2007, Artistic Director Rudi C. Soriano traveled with a LIKHA research team to Lubuagan, Kalinga, Philippines to learn traditional dances from Cirilo Bawer, a Kalinga elder and educator. This piece was re-choreographed by Rudi Soriano for the ensemble.

2008 PERFORMANCE

TITLE: Semba
GENRE: Batak
ARTISTIC DIRECTOR: Rudi C. Soriano
DANCERS: Kevin Alicbusan, Liza Atendido, Raisa Baula, Beverly Cruz, Cristina Cruz, Cassie Dominguez, Christian Dominguez, Emmanuel Grueso Jr., Maria Honrada,Vincent Hutalla, Chariss Ilarina, Henry LaoShanna Mendiola, Kristin Nepacena, Michael Palad, Bryan Pangilinan, Alisa Quezon, Marie Reyes, Maria Rios, Camille Sibucao, Paulino Tamayo
MUSICIANS: Ernesto Andrade, Edward Cruz, Gabriel Encarnacion, Adelbert Espino, Randy Miranda, Omar Pahati, Almar Reyes, Richard Rios, Veronica Williams
INTERNATIONAL GUEST ARTISTS: Palawan Center for the Arts Foundation- Gilbert Belostrino, Vida Lledo, Narino Maniapao, Aimee Sombilon

For this performance, LIKHA presented dances learned from Batak natives on the island of Palawan in the southeast Philippines. This presentation, Semba, was a world premiere created and choreographed by Rudi Soriano and Dance Director Jay Loyola.

Semba
is a stately invocation, reflecting a profound reverence and connection with the natural world. The Batak are one of the Philippine's ancient tribes, and for thousands of years, they have lived deep in the Philippine forest as nomadic hunters, fishermen, and farmers. They keep their distance from the modern world, and although their forest home has decreased alarmingly in recent years, they continue to live a nomadic way of life. As Batak nomadic groups move from place to place, they dance for the local spirits. They dance to ask permission or approval to inhabit a location, and for guidance before fishing, hunting, or planting. If the spirits don't answer with a sign—a wind, an animal cry—the dance is repeated.

When the Batak perform this ceremony, they dance in specific and diverse locations in nature. In this choreography, several dances are incorporated into one. Here, three priestesses act as mediators between the community and the spirits. Some dancers listen and some look up to the sky, searching for signs that their dance has been acknowledged. In the Philippines today, Batak natives wear western clothing, but men of previous generations wore a loincloth made of the bark of a tree. They also wore a belt with a bamboo basket or pouch to carry their betel nut. Women were topless, and they wore skirts with a colored wrap, and adorned themselves with shell and wooden necklaces.

LIKHA is honored to include international guest artists from Palawan in today's performance—Narino Maniapao opens the piece with an invocation chant, and Aimee Sombilon, Vida Lledo, and Gilbert Belostrino join the LIKHA dancers and musicians. The artists are from the Palawan Dance Theater, part of the non-profit Palawan Center for the Arts Foundation in Puerto Princesa City, Palawan, Philippines. This group is the premiere dance company in the province of Palawan, and it works to preserve traditional culture through music and dance. The dancers are from Palawan’s most widely distributed tribal group—Tagbanua.

 

2007 PERFORMANCE

TITLE: Kadayawan
GENRE: Indigenous
ARTISTIC DIRECTOR: Rudi C. Soriano
CHOREOGRAPHERS: Jay Loyola and Rudi C. Soriano
DANCERS: Liza Atendido, Valerie Baula, Victoria Baula, Ron Cabarloc, Lolita Castillo, Beverly Cruz, Christina Cruz, Jennifer Cruz, Manuel De Vera Jr., Cassandra Dominguez, Emmanuel Grueso Jr., Maria Honrada, Vincent Hutalla, Henry Lao, Laurie Laxa, Shanna Mendiola, Kristin Nepacena, Bryan Pangilinan, Jennifer Poblete, Maria Rios, Camille Sibucao, Paulino Tamayo
MUSICIANS: Kevin Alicbusan (tangungo), Ed Cruz (tangungo), Herna Cruz (agong), Gabriel Encarnacion (babandil), Harrison Hapin (babandil), Randy Miranda (agong), Omar Pahati (dabakan), Angelo Salumbides (agong)

Davao, a region in Southeastern Mindanao, the southern most Philippine island, is rich in agriculture and minerals and is known for its cultural diversity. With a strong network of kinship, many of these communities live in long houses scattered between the ocean towns of Davao del Sur up to the foot of the towering mountain, Mount Apo. These important indigenous tribes are known for their distinctive costumes and ornamentation. In particular, the Bagobo, considered the most colorful people of the Philippines, wear fabric woven of abaca fiber, a kind of hemp grown abundantly in the Philippines, adorned with embroidery, beads, and tiny brass bells that can be heard jingling. The Mandaya and Mansaka are reputed for their vibrant tie-dyed textiles and sophisticated embroidery techniques of symbols and motifs.

During harvest time the ethnic groups around Mount Apo gather together to celebrate a bountiful harvest through singing, dancing, offerings, and merriment. Today the festival is celebrated with floats of fresh flowers and fruit as the people parade through the streets dressed in tribal costumes and jewelry. The musical instruments consist of the tangungo, a set of eight metal gongs hung on bamboo frames, and the dabakan, a single-headed drum.

Through a staged representation of indigenous dances of Davao, LIKHA Pilipino Folk Ensemble commemorates the diverse folklore traditions of these glorious tribes. The richly textured dance reflects their multi-faceted nature, while simultaneously calling to the Bagobo, Mandaya, Manobo, B’laan, and Mansaka tribes to celebrate their unity with thanksgiving festivities. The piece titled Kadayawan, is a native expression in the Dabawnon language meaning “anything of excellence that brings good fortune.”

2006 PERFORMANCE

TITLE OF PIECE: Idudu, Gangsa Pattung
GENRE: Cordillera Mountain Dances
CHOREOGRAPHERS: Ramon Obusan (Idudu) Rudi Soriano (Gangsa Puttung)
DANCERS: Charlene Abalos, Liza Atendido, Raisa Baula, Lizzette Billostas, Lolita Castillo, Beverly Cruz, Gary Cruz, Herna Cruz, Tina Cruz, Gary Cruz, Manuel De Vera Jr., Cassie Dominquez, Genee Dominguez, Emmanuel Grueso Jr., Henry Lao, Laurie Laxa, Kristin Nepacena, Jaynee Ruiz, Camille Sibucao, Paulino Tamayo
MUSICIANS
: Gangsa: Kevin Alicbusan, Ed Cruz, Christian Domintuez, Vincent Hutalla, Randy Miranda, Omar Pahati, Bryan Pangilinan, Angelo Salumbides

Luzon, in the north, is the largest island grouping in the Philippines and contains the biggest mountain range in the country, the Cordilleras, home to many tribal groups. Common to all is the gong. Made of metal, brass, iron or bronze, these circular flat instruments are ever-present during village rituals and festivals, celebrating the harvest and other life cycle passages.

The rugged Abra region in the northwest is home to the Tingguian tribe, who are mostly rice farmers and bamboo craft makers. The Kalinga tribe, from the north central Kalinga region, thrives as a proud, strong people protective of their inherited social traditions. Although contemporary dress is the norm, the traditional dress of loincloths for men and long wrapped skirts for women are still used.

Likha Pilipino Folk Ensemble celebrates the rich folkloric traditions of the tribes of the Philippines. The first piece, entitled Idudu, is taken from a native lullaby and portrays the interchanging roles of mothers and fathers in a Tingguian family. A father is depicted plowing in a field as a mother nurtures the children, then the mother takes over the remaining planting and sowing chores while the father cares for the children. The second piece, Gangsa Pattung is a thanksgiving dance from the Kalinga featuring a group of male gong players interweaving in circular formations with female dancers.

2004 PERFORMANCE

Lihka 

dancersTITLE OF PIECE: TODAK
GENRE:
Bogabos
CHOREOGRAPHY:
Ramon Obusan
DANCERS:
Emmanuel Benisano, Beverly Buhain, Ron Cabarloc, Kirsi Cabatbat, Gary Cruz, Manny De Vera, Cassie Dominguez, Christian Dominguez, Genee Dominguez, Chariss Ilarina, Laurie Laxa, Randy Miranda, Kristin Nepacena, Bryan Pangilinan, Pebbles Remulla, and Paulino Tamayo
MUSICIANS:
Ernie Andrade (tangungo), Ed Cruz (tangungo), Herna Cruz (gong), OJ Pahati (drum), Fredeswinda Santos (gong), and Emmanuel Grueso Jr. (babandil)

For the 2004 Festival, Likha presents dance and music derived from the aboriginal Bagobos people of the region Davao in the southeastern part of the Philippines near Mindanao. These people live between the ocean towns of Davao del Sur up to the foot of the towering Mt. Apo. This staged version of a Bagogo harvest dance depicts in mime and symbolic movement the time cycle of rice growing, from planting to harvesting.

Todak refers to the bamboo poles topped by clappers used by the male dancers. Here the men clean the field in preparation for planting, while others jab the todak into the earth to make holes for seed planting. Young women throw the grain into the holes and later return to cut the rice stalks to place in their baskets. Finally they thresh and pound the grain for consumption. The set concludes with men and woman dancing together in celebration of a hard days work completed.

The costumes represent the type of clothing made by the Bagobos people. The fabric is woven of abaca fiber, a kind of hemp grown abundantly in the Philippines, and is adorned with embroidery and designs made with shell disks and beads. The musical instruments consist of the tangungo, a set of eight metal gongs hung on bamboo frames, the kubing, or jew's harp and drums.

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