It was amazing how the young generation embraced an old tradition which was started by their elders of the society a few decades back. The Sublian Festival, which dawned 23 years ago, brings together the old and young people of Batangas City every year to celebrate the richness of their very own cultural dance, the subli.
The program proper started with the exhibition of the senior subli dancers. The first group performed the Talumpok, Batangas City version of subli while the second group performed the subli dance version of Sinala, Bauan.
The contestants subdivided into three categories (elementary, high school/collegiate, community) were all up for the competition. Their determination to emerge as champion of the Sublian Festival 2010 was mirrored on their faces and of course, on their performances.
How the performances were gauged was through the following criteria: Authenticity 40%, Transfer 30%, Accompaniment 20%, and Costume 10%. There were six groups for the elementary category, six groups for the high school category as well, and three groups for the community category.
“Yaman ng Lahi”
Batangas Committee on Cultural Affairs Vice Chairman Ed Borbon emphasized in his welcome remarks that Subli dance is a wealth of the culture of Batangas City or as he put it, “yaman ng lahi”.
True enough, a lot of people are interested in learning more about the history and rich cultural background of the Subli dance. There were students from the University of Sto. Tomas doing their research about this cultural dance.
It’s overwhelming to see how the young people of Batangas City and its neighboring towns showed off their Subli dancing skills with pride and enthusiasm.
Kristine Mae, a Subli dancer from Sinala Elementary School expressed her enjoyment in dancing Subli and said she doesn’t mind wearing the costume even if it’s quite hot and uncomfortable at times.
Ms. Rhea Ramirez of Sta. Clara Elementary School shared their dancers only took a week and a half to practice for the competition. It seemed that learning the dance is not a heavy task for the young dancers since they have been exposed to this dance for years now.
Victorino Magnaye of Talumpok, Batangas City was one of the first performers who showed the original Talumpok version of Subli. Mang Victorino has been dancing Subli for decades now, not minding the signs of aging, he’s still eager to perform.
Before the announcement of winners, the Sublian Festival participants took an oath to dance the Subli until they get old. This might be quite an informal oath yet the promise of these young Subli dancers moved the emotions of some of the people in the venue.
Sublian Festival 2010 winners
1st Placer – Alangilan Elementary School
2nd Placer – St. Bridget’s College
3rd Placer – Sinala Elementary School
High School/Collegiate Level
1st Placer – Sta. Teresa College
2nd Placer – Batangas State University
3rd Placer – Lyceum of the Philippines University – Batangas
1st Placer – Bauan University
2nd Placer – Batangas State University Integrated School
3rd Placer – Brgy. Alangilan
Winning groups won the following: 1st place P10,000; 2nd place P7,000; 3rd place P5,000.
Meanwhile, Star Struck V Final Four Sarah Lahbati, Enzo Pineda, Steven Silva, Diva Montelaba graced the opening of the program and performed a dance number (well, not Subli) for the audience’s delight.
“Nag-enjoy po ako, lalo na sa pag-take ng pictures. Nakakaaliw kasi panoorin yung mga bata. Tapos na-curious ako kung gaano kaya kadumi ang mga paa ng dancers, hehe, kaya pinakiusapan ko yung ilang dancers na ipakita ang paa nila, ayun, may willing magpapicture. Masaya, masaya ang Sublian!” – Deo (OJT, Likha Internet)
“First time ko po sa Batangas City. Ngayon lang din ako nakapanood ng Sublian Festival at magandang experience ‘to. Natuwa ako dun sa mga matatanda na nagsasayaw na ng Subli mula pa noong mga bata sila. Nakakabilib yung pagmamahal nila sa Subli.” – Dzein (OJT, Likha Internet)
SUBLIAN Festival 2010 Image Gallery
Congratulations, Batangas City for another successful Sublian Festival. Until next year!