Classifications of Philippine Folk Dances

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  • Topic: Dance, Provinces of the Philippines, Philippines
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5 CLASSIFICATIONS OF PHILIPPINE DANCES

1) Maria Clara dances - named after a Spanish-style dress, and its performance includes Spanish footwork with Filipino modifications such as bamboo castanets and Asian fans.

a. Carinosa - is a flirtatious Philippine group dance in the Maria Clara suite of Philippine folk dances where the fan or handkerchief plays an instrumental roll as it places the couple in a hard-to-get romance scenario. Despite popular belief, Cariñosa has always been the national dance of the Philippines, whereas the Tinikling is just a worldwide favorite. b. Aray - A dance whose words are sung in "Chabacano-ermitense," a hybrid of Spanish that was only spoken in the Ermita district before the turn of the century and today is extinct. The dance itself is a flirtatious one that involves graceful use of the pañuelo, or shawl, and tambourines. Aray means "ouch" in Tagalog. c. Alcamfor - The Alcamfor dance is classified under Maria Clara dances because of the attire of the dancers which are Maria Clara for the ladies and a barong Tagalog for the men.

The dance originated from Leyte, a province in Visayan Region. It is so named because of the handkerchief the girl holds laced with camphor oil, a substance which suposedly induces romance. d. Havanera de Jovencita - A wedding party dance which originated in the town of Botolan in the Zambales Province. Typical sequences include the procession of the bride and groom's parents, lineup of the bridesmaids and groomsmen upstage, and a solo featuring the wedding couple. e. Rigodon Royale - This elegant dance was brought to the Philippines by the Filipinos who returned from their travels abroad during the Spanish era. This dance takes its name from its opening performances at formal affairs such as the President's Inaugural Ball. Members of government, including the President and First Lady, diplomatic corps, and other state officials usually participate in the Rigodon. Traditionally, a ballroom waltz dance would follow the Rigodon. f. Chotis - Chotis (or "Shotis") was one of the ballroom dances introduced by early European settlers. This dance, from Camarines Sur, has been adapted by the Bicolano people and is characterized by a brush-step-hop movement. g. Panderetas - It was named after the jingle-less tambourines carried by the females and it originated from Tanza, Iloilo. From December 16 to January 6, a group of people in the Visayan regions go from house to house to sing Christmas called "Daigon." In some regions the song is usually followed by some dances, and "Las Panderetas" is one of those dances.

2) Mountain – Igorot dances - The mountainous Central Cordillera region of Northern Luzon includes six ethno-linguistic tribes known as the Ibaloy, Kankanay, Ifugao, Kalinga, Apayao, and Bontoc. They prefer to be called by their respective tribal names rather than the collective term Igorot, which was first used by the Spaniards and later by Christian lowlanders. These tribes were generally unfazed by Spanish colonization. This homogeneous group is recognized by their common socio-cultural traits. They hold common religious beliefs, generally nature-related, and make propitiatory offerings to anitos, or household gods. Among these people of the Cordillera, dance continues to be an expression of community life that animates the various rituals and ceremonies. It serves for self-edification of the performers and entertainment for the spectators. They dance to appease their ancestors and gods to cure ailments, to insure successful war-mating activities,or to ward off bad luck or natural calamities. They dance to congregate and socialize, for general welfare and recreation, and as an outlet for repressed feeling. They also dance to insure bountiful harvests, favorable weather, and to mark milestones in the cycle of life.

h. Apayao Courtship dance - It comes from the northernmost section of the Mountain...
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