First Dinagyang roadshow starts in Pampanga

By: Emme Rose Santiagudo

DINAGYANG Festival kicked off its first Philippine tour in Clark Pampanga with a performance from the Dagyang tribes dance competition champion Tribu Ilonganon on Wednesday.

After performing in international countries in past years, it’s about time we showcase the festival around the Philippines, according to Iloilo Dinagyang Foundation, Inc. (IDFI) Board of Trustee and the head of delegation Michael Ng.

“Dugay na ang international tour. It’s time na Philippine tour naman kay para makita sang kababayan naton na amo ni ang Dinagyang,” he said.

According to Ng, the tour is also part of IDFI’s responsibility in promoting Iloilo City and showcasing its successful public and private partnership.

“Dal-on naman sa iban nga lugar. Number one target gid is to promote Iloilo city because kung very succesful ang festival it means the city is peaceful and nami kadtuan,” he added.

The tour is also a gateway for potential investors to invest in Iloilo City, Ng emphasized.

“Makita nila nga kanami sang Dinagyang, masadya so makadto sila diDaw gateway or opportunity nila sa Iloilo malay mo may mga investors da big or small investors, they will invest because sa nakita nila sa Iloilo,” he said.

Ng said they would be performing in municipalities and cities where each of their best practices can also be applied to Iloilo.

“Ang mga libuton na nga lugar mga best practices sila na applicable man sa aton and nga pwede ta kashare bala para mapanami ang aton nga Dinagyang and ang siyudad maexpose,” he added.

With the help of the Department of Tourism (DOT) Central Luzon headed by Regional Director Carolina Uy together with DOT-Western Visayas Regional Director Helen Catalbas, around 45 dancers and drummers of Tribu Ilonganon performed at the Yokohama Plant in Clark, Pampanga on Wednesday.

On March 1 and 2, the delegation will be joining the Panagbenga Festival.

The next stop of the Dinagyang Festival will be on May 11-12 at Manggahan Festival of Guimaras, followed by a cultural presentation at SM City Cebu Seaside on July 26, and performances in Bohol’s Sandugo Festival on July 27; August 12-18 Kadayawan Festival of Davao; October 19 Buglasan Festival of Dumaguete City; October 27 Masskara Festival; and the November 5 Pintaflores Festival of San Carlos City in Negros Occidental.

Aside from Tribu Ilonganon, the other winners – Tribu Paghidaet and Tribu Dagatnon – will get the chance to perform in the different tours as the tribes will be rotated.

After years of dominating the Aliwan Festival, IDFI president Ramon Cua Locsin said the festival will go on its first Philippine tour.

“We have already proven to the whole Philippines that Dinagyang is number one. Ang aton naman subong is to show the festival to other provinces and cities in line with our theme, Connecting Communities through Culture and Faith,” Locsin said.