by Bicol Express News
The Fiesta Bicolandia 2022 hosted by the Department of Tourism Bicol became the avenue of Sorsogon cultural heritage when it re-introduces the soulful spirit of the original musical composition penned by its sons as dancers interpret the meaning of endearment, happy life, triumphs, tenacity, humor, and sorry and sacrifices.
The dancers from Sorsogon State University Dance Theater and Cultural Group interpreted the selection of dance and songs that represents volumes of everyday life.
Highlighting “Pili” on the dance floor was in a cadence of rhythm as their body language pictures the product’s closeness to every home which cannot be let down.
If Pantomina (Pantomime) is close to a Bicolano’s heart, a loved song interpreted as a dance of dove in pursuit of a soulmate partner, “Pantomina de Sorsogon” glances back to the old tradition of courtship. The interpretation of Jaime Grulla, son of Juban town, is that to find someone you truly love patience is the virtue, for ladies in waiting, are as loyally demure. This heritage put to test the deep pockets of the “padrinos and madrinas” as goodwill to start their married life peso bills is pinned to the couple and showered with coins for posterity.
This is the opposite of “Panyo” or handkerchief, for the ladies are initiating to find their man of desire. Gaily and openly she drops the “Panyo” intentionally looking at her man in the hope that he notices the intention. It was an epic of desire.
The presentation was spiced by the ironic fate of a drunk as a testament to easing life’s pressure. It was naughty yet, true to form. But, one cannot be faulted for life miseries abound. The dance mirrored what it takes to be a drunk.
The audience was treated to a nostalgic dance of “Kudut-kudutan” a lively song that youngsters hummed in a tempo of joy, celebration and full of laughter. It was folklore that never ceases. But one misses her playmates when at an age they remembered their plea “luway-luwaya man.”
“Kadena de Amor” a climbing plant with a beautiful flower is a love song that originates in Magallanes. It expresses the beauty of Sorsogon ladies who invokes endearing love, patience, and caring character. It was nostalgic and proud and true to the young generations of Sorsogon today.
The dance of Sta, Magdalena town was an interpretation of abundance. “Bugsa” or the Furrowing dance narrative gave a glimpse of the bountiful harvest of tiny crabs during low tide imbibing the resilient character of the town’s people. The dance was a grit of its people scouring the seashore by furrowing using a handmade net depicting the role in the community. Such was not lost as the dancer’s movements impresses meaningfully how it is done.
The agony of a lover is a sad tale but with a happy ending.
Dejected, shamed, ignored, test to his limit but in the end, his love and patience shook the crucible of defiance. The main dancers are emotionally attached to their movements, their expressions of defiance, pity, frustration, and unforgiving were at crescendos best but when the heart melts, a man has his woman of love. This was how “Kung Mao Ini an Palad ko” or (If this is My Fate”) was interpreted.
Putting a premium on the sanctity of marriage, “Estratihima” (Strategy) portrays in dance for a married couple not to be estranged from one another for good. This is a reflection of the strong belief of Sorsoganon in valuing the sacred vows of marriage before God and man. This fortitude as ensconced brings comfort and arguably develops a lasting married life. As seen in the eyes of the performers, if the whip of love envelops a marriage the ills of passiveness, uncaring, and misunderstanding are not a thing to hold.
Another agonizing tale performed by the dancers is the “Paaram na Saimo” translated to mean Goodbye to You My Love. The interpretation was a classic tale of how the parents of old intervene and chooses whom their daughter to marry without remorse. Falling victims are “magkasingirog” who for long professed their love and commitment to be one. But because of her unfailing obedience to her parent, the lady in deep sorrow vows to the wishes of her parents.
The “Tibalhuan-an buhay” was a narrative dance of life’s journey even if the road we are taking is fraught with danger and problems. It was a storytelling dance of life’s ups and downs may one is rich or poor that walks this road but be pragmatic that not everything is lost. Life is a circle that we must continue to live.
Capping their performance is the Pantomina sa Tinampo depicting the inherent character of Sorsoganons ready to help their fellow men. It encapsulated people’s unity, hope and love.
The event according to Bobby Gigantone of the Sorsogon Provincial Tourism Culture and Arts office was made possible with the cooperation of Oliver Gabin, Lizel Lerios and Tomas Encinares, researchers for Sports, Culture and Arts of Sorsogon State University who made use of the composition of Emmanuel Eresmas and Diogenes Engay of Gubat town to a dance of hope, love, struggle, pain, and humor.
Gigantone likewise expresses his gratitude to Sorsogon provincial leaders without their support their participation in Fiesta Bicolandia 2022 will not be possible and promised that the long-lost folk music and dance originally started in Sorsogon will be offered in the next edition of the festival.