TINIKLING DANCE – PHILIPPINES

TINIKLING DANCE, PHILIPPINES

The Tinikling dance from Philippines is a very intriguing dance style said to have originated by imitating  the movements of a bird – the Tikling bird. This ‘folk’ dance originated from the Leyte island in the Philippines. This dance is said to be traditionally performed to ‘Rondalla’ music and involves two people tapping and moving bamboo poles on the ground and against each other with the dancers hopping and dancing in the blocks thus formed by the bamboo poles. This dance basically involves imitation of movements seen in a bird known as ‘Tikling’. Apart from being performed in the Philippines, this dance style is also extremely popular in the United States of America and is taught in schools as a component of physical education.

a. History/origin of the Tinikling Dance:

According to the cultural history of the Philippines, this dance form is said to have originated on the island of Leyte located in the Visayas region. It was developed during the colonial rule of the Spanish. Apparently, this dance was created by imitating body movements seen in a bird called Tikling, and hence has aptly been named Tinikling. Furthermore, this dance over the years has become so popular that it is being taught in schools in the United States of America as a form of aerobic exercise. The tinikling dance is considered the national dance of Philippines and is performed during special occasions such as Independence Day and Filipino festivals.

b. Costumes used in the Tinikling Dance:

The costume used in this dance form varies depending on the gender, and they are as follows:

1. For men:

The attire worn includes a traditional embroidered shirt known as ‘Barong Tagalog‘ and red trousers.

2. For women:

The attire worn includes:

  1. Balintawak: Colourful dresses possessing wide arched sleeves.
  2. Patadyong: A pineapple fiber blouse and checkered skirts.

c. Music involved in the Tinikling Dance:

The musical instruments used in this dance includes stringed instrument such as bandurrias, guitars, laudes, octavinas, and ukuleles. Furthermore, the music in this dance style involves the use of a triple meter.

d. Training availability and technique involved in the Tinikling Dance:

In terms of technique, the performers dance to the rhythm of music used by passing through rapidly moving sticks made from bamboo. Furthermore, the performers while dancing hold their hands behind their back. In addition, as the tempo of the music increases the pace of the body movements becomes rapid. As for training centers/schools, training for this unique ‘folk’ dance is provided in schools all across United States of America.

Some Tinikling Dance Videos (YouTube)

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