TheJaw-dropping Dance of the Clapping Bamboos
The most popular among Filipino cultural dances using the clapping bamboos are Singkil and Tinikling. Watching the performing artists weave through crisscrossing bamboos with fantastic precision and grace will literally make your jaw drop. They are the liveliest and most enthralling. Dancing the Singkil or Tinikling will require skill and footwork ala Manny Pacquiao.
Singkil and Tinikling started with a simple version. It has evolved into a theatrical and stylized spectacle. The young generations of Filipinos, especially those who lived and raised abroad, came up with a hiphop version of the clapping bamboo dance.
This dance is a mimic of the movement of the bird "tikling" or a barred rail (Gallirallus torquatos) hopping over trees, grass stems, or over bamboo traps set by farmers. It is amazing and at the same time amusing to watch the performing artists to skillfully locomote themselves through the clapping bamboo poles.
The rhythmic clapping of crisscrossed bamboo poles represent the trees that were falling which the princess gracefully avoids. According to the folklore a princess and her slave were trapped in the middle of a forest during and earthquake with the prince finally rescuing her. A ballet move is incorporated here that led others to comment why the prince lifted up the princess when even touching the woman is supposed to be a no no. I have no answer to that. Well, maybe because art evolves, and since dance is an art, it also evolves.
The shimmering costumes and headdress added beauty and elegance to the dance.
Singkil Dance by The Bayanihan Dance Company
The Bayanihan Dance Company first introduced the Filipino cultural dances to the world with class.
The Hip-hop Version of Tinikling
This is a sample of a revolutionized Tinikling. It is more apt to call their dance another name other than Tinikling.. another clapping bamboo dance. They do not use the exact music of the cultural dance, and they do not wear the proper cultural costume either. Still, watching the dance of the clapping bamboos will always leave you in awe.
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