NaFFAA Show at the Portuguese club
From the first beat of the drums to the last thump of the bamboo poles, the NaFFAA Philippine Cultural Show at the Portuguese Club on July 18 was a rousing success.
The performers from New Hampshire, Rhode Island, Massachusetts and Connecticut came together and put up a show that was elegant, professional and fun.
The capacity crowd on the second floor of the Portuguese Club cheered and clapped throughout the performance. Its a show that would be remembered and talked about for a long time.
"It took my breath away," Linda Almira said. "The dancers were talented and the costumes fabulous. The last number (Singkil) was very complicated. The gong ensemble lent an exotic compelling sound. The whole show was very well done."
"I learned something today," said Jerry Doyle. "I learned the story behind the Tinikling."
Very few Filipinos actually know the origin of the Tinikling because they take it for granted. Thanks to Tony Mateo for his interesting explanation of the dance.
"The Filipino farmers had problems with the long-legged birds called tikling. These birds have voracious appetite, eating up the palays in the rice fields. The farmers devised a bamboo trap to ensnare the tiklings, but they were so agile that they were never caught. The dance Tinikling evolved out of thatthe imitation of the tiklings evading the bamboo traps."
"It was good to know such bits of information," said Mila Manlongat who co-emceed the show. "It makes one more appreciative of ones culture and heritage."
There was enough variety in the show to satisfy a mixed audience. From the folk dances of the mountain province, Luzon, Visaya and Mindanao to the Polynesian, Tahitian and Hawaiian dances that reflect our affinity with these island people, it was a three-hour tour of the cultures that have shaped the Filipino nation.
The fashion show was a reprise of the Renee Salud Fashion Show at the Foxwood Casino where the Filipinas from the tri-state area preened and strutted down the runway. They gave the professional models a run for their money.
The young dancers are growing and would soon take over the old fogeys. They are also cuter.
The two American gentlemen in barong Tagalog who danced with their Filipina partners exemplified the best in American-Filipino cooperation.
The authentic costumes and performance of the Dance Philippines Performing Arts stood out, and the Singkil was a fitting finale to a wonderful show.
This is the first joint performance of the Filipino associations in the region under the auspices of the National Federation of Filipino American Association. Chairman Arnie Rosario and cultural director Chona Trinidad organized and coordinated the cultural show.
The show was a success, but theres always room for improvement. The show started as usual on Filipino time; singers for the national anthems did not show up; confusion over speakers; long roll call of guests.
So many lovely people, so many lovely dancers and what a lovely time it was!