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'Usa ka Isla,' Bohol's entry in Korea dance fest

TAGBILARAN CITY, Bohol, Oct. 7 (PIA) -- A team of Boholano artists in the performing arts would be telling the story of a village whose people’s simple dreams were washed away by the overpowering waves brought by super-typhoon Odette in the 2022 Gyeryongsan Mountain International Dance Festival in Korea.

Bohol’s participation this year in the Gyeryongsan Mountain International Dance Festival is its second appearance in the mountain shrine venue.

In 2019, Bohol sent to the festival Teatro Bol-anon’s “Dagon sa Hoyohoy” (Talisman of the Breeze) via a 25-man drama theater company and technical support.

This was Bohol’s participation in the South Korea-Philippines 70th year of international relations.

This year, through Kasing Sining, the team of actors and technical staff would be doing intricately choreographed dance movements, engaging original music composition, original musical score, and light show.

Using select artists from dance groups of Kasing Sining’s multitude of organized community collectives and theaters groups in Bohol, the team would present their official dance festival entry: Usa ka Isla (One Island).

“Usa ka Isla” is a 30-minute physical theater performance culled from the personal experiences of its creators and communities during and after the Super Typhoon Rai, said Kasing Sining founder and creative director Lutgardo Labad.

Kasing Sining, a local arts group, has been doing stress and psychological relief for communities affected by natural and man-made calamities and has helped Bohol communities through arts for healing and arts for expression programs.

Their exposure to distraught communities affected by calamities and climate change-related issues has become a treasure chest of rich materials for community awareness through education and information through the creative industry.

Through songs, dances and drama, the piece aims to invite the audience to peek into and be immersed in the experience of our island communities in the context of disasters, climate change and resilience, Labad added.

To be staged at the Gyeryongsan Mountain International Dance Festival on Oct. 15-16, Usa Ka Isla will also tour Seoul on Oct. 17-20.

Written by Kasing Sining and directed by Engr. Jirrey David Aguilar, the 30-minute dance drama is choreographed by Bryll Dumandan and music score by Odoni Pestelos.

The play’s production design is by Marvin Ablao and Angelo Inguito, lights by Charo Mae Apipe.

The lean team of Usa ka isla is performed by Marvin Ablao, Angelo Inguito, Nicole Apipe, Mikay Naraga, Paolo Javier, Gian Ale, with the special participation of Rama Marcaida and Skyzx Labastilla.

Usa  ka Isla ran both matinee and gala shows for its Bohol premiere at the Bohol Cultural Center, Tagbilaran City on Oct. 6 and 7. (RAHC/PIA7 Bohol)

"Usa ka Isla," a tapestry of stories of a storm-surged community in Jao island in Talibon, Bohol gets to be Bohol’s story of resilience in the 2022 Gyeryongsan Mountain International Dance Festival, to be told in dance by Kasing Sining on Oct. 15-20 in Korea. (PIA Bohol/Photo by Matthew Garrett)

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Rey Anthony Chiu

Regional Editor

Region 7

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