Posted by July 3, 2008on
For many years now, they have known for their tattoo-printed tights and intricately made costume and headdress. Their signature routines still keep the people amazed and awed every time they perform.
Lumad Basakanon is a community-based dance troupe from Barangay Basak San Nicolas in Cebu City, hence the name Basakanon.
Their performances are always widely anticipated. Where ever they go, roaring applause can always be heard. And which ever festival they head to compete they are always on the top three.
The Lumad Basakanon group has been the 2007 and 2008 Cebu Sinulog Free Interpretation Category Champion. And being the festival champion they are automatically sent to the annual Aliwan Fiesta in Manila Philippines.
This Cebu-based festival dancers have won the Grand Prize of Aliwan Festival for three straight years in 2006 2007 and 2008. Pocketing 1Million Pesos for every year.
Last month they won in the annual Hudyaka Zanorte Festival but they represented the town of Siocon Zamboanga del Norte.
And just recently, Cebu’s Lumad Basakanon travelled to Tacloban City to compete in the newly-revived Sangyaw Festival.
Despite the fact that I have seen them perform for so many times already, I am still thrilled seeing them in Leyte. The people in Tacloban is witness to how good their performance last Sunday in the festival. I myself is expecting that they will win this contest easily. There was no strong competitor for Lumad Basakanon. Bacolod City’s Masskara Festival was in Tacloban not as a competitor but as a guest to promote the upcoming Bacolod Masskara Festival 2008.
It could have been an easy win. Another title under Cebu’s belt. But I was wrong. And the crowd’s wrong too. Who would have expected that the city’s contingent won the contest and bagging the 500 grand purse money. Who would have expected that. When their choreography is a copycat of Lumad Basakanon. Their costume has some similarities to Lumad Basakanon.
But as the dancers of Lumad Basakanon say, grabbing the title is not part of the business. What is important is for them to dance and offer their prayer ritual to Santo Niño.
Win or lose, I still love Lumad Basakanon. And I may not be a Cebuano, but I know how to appreciate great performance
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