BINANOG FESTIVAL 2015

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Philippine festivals depict the rich culture of Filipinos.  It also shows the unique blending of an area’s ethnic heritage as influenced by the countries that had stayed for some time, or probably have stayed till now, in the said area.  Though it may be for commercial, religious or political motives, the foreign visitors played a significant role in creating today’s Philippine culture.

When is the Binanog Festival in 2015?

Binanog Festival is on January 11, 2015, a Sunday. The Binanog Festival is always celebrated annually on the second Sunday of January.

Where is the Binanog Festival celebrated?

Binanog Festival is celebrated in Lambunao, Iloilo.  It is a hinterland in the centre of Panay Island in Visayas of the Philippines.  It is also known as the Land of Waterfalls, having twenty four documented waterfalls in the area.  People residing in this area are called Lambunaonons who celebrate the week-long Binanog Festival culminating on the second Sunday of January each year.

Origin of the Binanog Festival:

The Lambunaonons raise chicken as a prime means of livelihood in the past.  In so doing, they were always on the lookout for hawks which would attack their chickens for food.  Though the hawks were unwanted guests, the people were enthralled by the majestic movements of this bird they called banags.  Imitating the graceful movements of these birds of prey, the binanog dance came to existence. The Binanog Festival, which officially started in 2004, revolves around the binanog dance.  It is an ethnic dance emulating the graceful courtship and mating ritual of the banag in the beat of the drums or gongs.  Being influenced by Christianity, this festival is celebrated to honour the Sto. Nino, the Infant Child Jesus.

The highlight of this event is the dance competiton where the swiftness and precision of footwork are being highlighted. Dancers are wearing colorful and bright-colored costumes that add amusement to the lively beat of music.

Binanog Festival celebration:

The culminating activity for this festivity is the tribal competition of the binanog dance.  The dance is comprised of three forms:  Binanugan which imitates the bird at flight, Inagang sayaw-sayaw which is a celebration dance with intricate hand and foot works, and Dinagmay which is a courtship dance. The climax of the dance is when the female dancers catch their male partners using a handkerchief.  Contestants wear an embroidered costume under a bell-like garment made of pineapple silk cloth or embellished cotton wrap in red or white.

When is the Binanog Festival in 2016?

The Binanog Festival is on January 10, 2016, a Sunday.

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