Kaamulan street dancers to showcase life, history, culture of Bukidnon Lumads

MALAYBALAY CITY (Bukidnon News Dispatch  / 02 March 2012)   –Thousands of residents and visitors will troop to the city’s thoroughfares Saturday to witness contingents from seven local governments compete in the Kaamulan 2012 ethnic street dancing and ground competitions featuring life in the province’s indigenous communities and their love for peace.


Vice President Jejomar Binay is the provincial government’s guest of honor in time for the competition, the Capitol’s Public Affairs, Information, and Assistance (PAIA) Office confirmed Friday. The street dancing competition is one of the highlights and the biggest crowd drawers of the annual ethnic-inspired festival here.


The contingents’ order of presentation in the annual ethnic competition will be as follows: Cabanglasan, San Fernando, Quezon, Kalilangan, Valencia City, Malitbog, and Maramag.  They will compete in two categories, street dancing and ground competition.


Cabanglasan’s Haklaran


The Municipality of Cabanglasan, which is in Bukidnon’s boundary with Agusan del Sur, will present Pamuhat Te Haklaran, a healing ritual dance, that shows the Manobo Umajamnen’s reliance on the power of Magbabaya (God). According to the contingent’s official storyline, the presentation is divided into four scenes. The first scene features the typical life in the villages with Urok, a planting dance; Pangaso, a hunting dance, and Inomong a harvest dance.


The Haklaran ritual will be featured in the third scene where they will drive away the evil spirit that possessed a girl’s body. In the fourth scene they will present a thanksgiving dance in grateful response to Magbabaya’s kindness.



San Fernando’s Tigwahanons


The Municipality of San Fernando will show the Tigwahanons (people of the Tigwa River), who are indentified as a workaholic people dependent on the abundance of nature. They are a subgroup of the Manobos. They will present Logtoy or the good harvest, which will feature Pamalas to Magbabaya, a traditional seeking of guidance and permission from God.


Among the dances that were slated to be shown are the Kamot to clean the farm and the Talupak Pamugas to place the seeds in the holes. The presentation is also expected to showcase Bangkakawan, with use of spears to catch fish as they dance to entertain themselves while waiting for the harvest of their crops.


The contingent is also expected to perform harvest-time dances and other traditional dances of the Tigwahanons.

Quezon’s Sunggod ta Kamanga and Pandahe Alamara


The Municipality of Quezon will feature the Sunggod ta Kamanga, a ritual to ask for blessing and protection for their farming activities. This will also feature the Panalabugta for the guardian of the land and the Panampulot, a festive gathering to partake of the food offered in the ritual. They will also perform the Pandahe Alamara, a dance ritual to go into battle to protect the tribe.



Kalilangan’s festival of peace


“Kalilang” or festival for peace is the main feature of the contingent from the Municipality of Kalilangan, which is in the province’s border with Lanao del Sur. The presentation showcases the history of conflict, reconciliation, and peace between the Manobos and the Maranaos.


According to the contingent’s storyline submitted to the Provincial Tourism Office, after years of battle between the two groups they finally reconciled and enacted a Tampuda hu Balagon or a peace pact using intertwining rattan , which they held on both ends to symbolize mutual trust and good will


Valencia City’s Kaglagun


The contingent from Valencia City, dubbed as the City of Golden Harvest, will feature the Kaglagun, a post harvest thanksgiving feast of the east and west Valencia communities.


The east and west portions of Valencia have separate cultures but shared gods and rituals, including the Pansilig and Pamalas to edge out bad spirits. The two rituals are done to prepare for rice and corn planting. The performers will also showcase the Dugso dance and offer Limbay (songs) to please the spirits and ensure bountiful harvest.


As the natives plant, they perform the Talupak using a bamboo pole with trimmings. The performers primarily offers a picture of the life of farming rice and corn among the indigenous peoples of Valencia.



Malitbog’s guardians


The Municipality of Malitbog, in the province’s boundary with Misamis Oriental, will feature the Higaonon tribe’s Piglumunan hu mga Bagani (Legion of Guardians). The group is known as defenders of the land who are ready to spare their lives for the protection of the Nabunayan (environment), Kabukalagan (Race), Kalandang (Peace), and their Tag-banhawan (territory).


The presentation is expected to feature the legion’s engagement on a tribal war with the dumagats (or low land people) because of illegal logging, hunting, land grabbing, and mining.


The parties eventually led to a peace pact or Tambuda hu Balagon.


Maramag’s Lalabutan


The contingent from the Municipality of Maramag, which is at the crossroads of the province, will feature the Lalabutan or the traditional exchanging or bartering of goods or food among the Lumads.


Maramag, according to the storyline, is the original meeting place for bartering activities of the Lumads in the province. After the barter trade, the Lumads then perform dances, play their music, pray through chanting, and play games.


Now, Maramag is a progressive town where all road routes passing Bukidnon converge.


Bukidnon towns take turns in competing in the annual ethnic street dancing and ground presentations. Malaybalay and Valencia cities will compete every year. However, Malaybalay City opted not to perform this year as it was disallowed to compete for winning grand slam last year. They were invited to perform as non-competing contingent but Mayor Ignacio W. Zubiri told this reporter via SMS he opted not to participate. (Walter I. Balane/Bukidnon News)


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