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Thursday, May 8, 2008

Experiencing Aliwan Fiesta 2008

It was my first time to cover an event as big as the Aliwan Fiesta, the Philippines' Mother of all Fiestas/ Festivals, as it gathers different festivities in one location. This year, there were 22 festivals that were showcased--the colorful indigenous costumes, beadworks, facepaints, the heart-pounding beats, the different dance moves, chants, and the ready smile they wore can never be forgotten.

Despite the sudden downpour at exactly the time when it should start, never dampened the high spirits of the participants, spectators and photographers. In the midst of the rain, the drummers went to their instruments and pounded their drums like they were calling the gods to stop the rain and let the festivities continue. The crowd cheered on every drumbeat! The photographers would not like to lose this photo opportunity! Many of us who were in the stands covered our cameras and went out into the rain to capture that "Kodak Moment" (I have some in my Flickr album). Indeed the gods heeded the call to stop the rain, and the festivities went on like nothing happened. Despite their being soaked in sweat under the heat of the sun earlier, and soaked in the rain, the performers went on to entertain the people. It was a sight to behold. A hair-raising experience!

I am glad I was able to capture them in photos--and I will never get tired of making an indelible mark of the Philippine cultures and traditions, which I am so in love with.May this be my simple way of giving recognition to the men, women, old and young, who have painstakingly and who never get tired of showcasing their talents and their indigenous culture and tradition, as wel as their aspirations, through dance, chants and color.

I am glad I have become part of their culture and tradition, albeit only a few hours. But I will treasure it forever.

Till the next Aliwan Fiesta!

See the rest of the ALIWAN FIESTA 2008 PHOTOS

2 people have commented. Leave your comments too!:

I've been wanting to go to such festivals for a long time but my local air travel phobia has prevented me from doing so. So far, the only ones I've been to are the ones in Luzon - Pahiyas, Panagbenga, Atiatihan, etc.

Monaco, so you better watch the next Aliwan festival! It is, indeed, a great experience watching all the festivals in one venue.

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