Friday, September 27, 2019

Filipino Students Wow at the Asia Pacific Dance Festival in Hawaii

Wazzup Pilipinas!

Renowned industry experts and art students from over 30 schools and organizations worldwide gathered to celebrate the rich heritage of dance at the recent Asia Pacific Dance Festival (APDF) and Conference held at the University of Hawaii in Manoa, Honolulu, Hawaii.

Themed Ho‘ala - to waken, the three-day convention highlighted the finest qualities and the aesthetic nuances of the art form through a series of discussions, productions, workshops and shows, to share traditional and practiced-based research.

The APDF is a biennial intimate and collaborative environment that also serves as a platform for diverse and dynamic interactions for cross-cultural understanding among the international fellows.

The De La Salle-College of Saint Benilde (DLS-CSB) delegation from the Philippines, comprised of School of Design and Arts (SDA) Arts and Culture Cluster Associate Dean Dr. Sunita S. Mukhi, Dance Program Chairperson Christine Crame, and majors Erika Arandez and Emmerson Evangelio, exhibited the College’s homegrown talent and advocacy of our tropical islands.

Mukhi presented a scholarly paper titled Intimacy and Inclusion, which introduced three of the institution’s theatrical innovations: Quartered explored the travails, torpor, and triumphs of a dancer without the encumbrance of the fourth wall; Canvass exemplified how a performer’s body offered to the Universal Spirit exhibits the longings and desires for a better life; and Ding, Ang Bato! (Ding, [Give] Me the Stone!), a musical with Filipino Sign Language (FSL) into the choreography that allowed the Deaf audience to appreciate the play.

Decked with compelling images, her study emphasized how the art form can share stories of inclusion and intimacy. 

Under the meticulous guidance and choreography of Crame, Evangelio and Arandez executed a four-piece showcase coined Dance Stories of Magnificence and Joy. Comprised of Butterfly and the Pin Man: A Dance Story about Magnificence, Transformation, Waterfall, and White Lion and Brown Fox, the duo’s Asian-inspired contemporary intermission unfolded thought-provoking morality tales with a dramatic narration that seamlessly blended the traditional gestures of the Filipino genre and the exquisite Indian movements.

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