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PISTAHAN (Festivities) - 42nd Concert of Traditional Philippine Dances and Music is on December 1 and 2, 2017 at the Educational Cultural Complex Theater

By Dina B. Ellorin – Executive Director
San Diego-CA
October 26, 2017


The SAMAHAN Filipino American Performing Arts and Education Center, Inc. presents PISTAHAN (Festivities) - 42nd Concert of Traditional Philippine Dances and Music on the first of December, Friday at 7:00 pm, on the second of December, Saturday, at 2:00 and 7:00 pm at the Educational Cultural Complex Theater, 4343 Oceanview Blvd., San Diego, CA 92113.

Each two-hour program will showcase SAMAHAN's rich repertoire of festive traditional folk dances and celebratory tribal rituals from different regions of the Philippines. All performances are accompanied with live music provided by the SAMAHAN Rondalla string ensemble and the Pakaraguian Kulintang Ensemble (PKE).

General admission tickets are for sale at $15 per person and ticket for VIP seating at $25 each. Discounted tickets for a group of 10 are offered for $125 (prepaid). To purchase tickets, call (619) 946-7409 or email, SamahanPhilDance@gmail.com. On-line ticket purchase may be done at SAMAHAN’s website – www.SamahanPhilippineDance.com/Gala.

The Rural suite features “Pistahan”, a barrio fiesta featuring exhilarating dances from the countryside that depict the celebratory spirit of the Filipinos. The suite features Michelle Camaya Julian’s new choreography of the ever-popular Binasuan which SAMAHAN dancers perform with skill and joy, as well as, the creative version of Tinikling dance ending in a fast pace.

Festive dances and music are performed as rituals by the Kalinga tribe of the Cordilleras in Northern Luzon and by the Maguindanaoan of Cotabato in Mindanao. All rituals are accompanied by distinct regional percussion ensembles comprised of brass gongs and bamboo musical instruments. For the Cordillera suite, SAMAHAN  honors the Kalinga people’s penchant for celebratory occasions in “Amung” —a gathering with communal dances, gangsa (flat-gong) and bamboo music, and salidummay (song chants) as taught by Ms. Juliet Omli Cawas Cheatle, the director and choreographer of the BIBAK (Bontoc, Ifugao, Benguet, Apayao, Kalinga) of Seattle and Filipinas Performing Arts of Washington (FPAWS).

In the Mindanao suite, the Maguindanaon “Kalilang” (celebration) pays tribute to the heritage and legacy of SAMAHAN’s Kulintang teacher, the late Kulintang Master and NEA National Heritage Fellow — Danongan Sibay Kalanduyan, also known as Guro Danny of Datu Piang, Cotabato who passed away in September 2016. His legacy lives on in SAMAHAN’s performances of Mindanao cultural dances and Kulintang music for weddings and healing rituals. Maguindanaoan natives, Sata Abdullah and Faisal Monal of Nuling, Cotabato are credited for sharing their new repertoire of Maguindanaon dances and kulintang music. More importantly, this gala will debut the concert performance of the eldest grandchild of Guro Danny, Kim Kalanduyan. She plays Kulintang music taught by Bernard Ellorin, PhD and Eric Abutin, students of Guro Danny and co-directors of PKE. The ensemble is noted to be one of the very few ensembles of its kind in the US.

The 42nd Concert of Traditional Philippine Dances and Music is dedicated to the memory of SAMAHAN founder Dr. Lolita Diñoso Carter, who passed away July, 2011. The public is invited to watch the annual presentation by the SAMAHAN performers and students as a tribute to the magnificent legacy of Philippine culture and tradition bestowed by Dr. Carter to the Filipino American youth of San Diego SAMAHAN's cultural programs are partly funded by the California Arts Council, the National Endowment for the Arts, the County of San Diego Enhancement Program through Supervisors Ron Roberts, Greg Cox and Kristin Gaspar, The Lolita Diñoso Carter Endowment through The San Diego Foundation and contributions from donors.

The SAMAHAN Filipino American Performing Arts & Education Center is a non-profit organization founded in 1974 by Dr. Lolita Diñoso Carter. It continues to educate and entertain the San Diego community of the richness of Philippine cultural arts. It endeavors to present the Filipinos’ folk dances and music true to their traditional form, including costuming. SAMAHAN offers Filipino folk dance classes in the Music Learning Center in National City and in The Filipino School in Mira Mesa, for children and adults with interest in learning about their cultural heritage and develop a sense of community. For information about dance classes, music workshops, other cultural programs and performances in community and private occasions, visit - www.samahanphilippinedance.com or call (619) 946-7409.

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