Wednesday, January 2, 2013

A Fusion of Boom and Grandeur for ILOILO Dinagyang 2013

photo by Jun Fuerte

Iloilo is a festival province. It has a calendar filled with more festivals then most people can think of. Throughout the whole year, colorful and vibrant festivals range through musical, religious, cultural and harvest to name just a few. In fact many of these festivals have won national acclaim. Our festivals are occasions where people come together to celebrate anything from the arts and live music, to food to name but a few. 
Every year during the last weekend of January, the city and province of Iloilo prepares itself for one of the country’s greatest cultural festivals, one of the biggest and most boisterous celebrations called Dinagyang, from the Hiligaynon word, Dagyang or roughly translated it means “merry-making.”  The Hiligaynon term Dinagyang was coined by a local writer and radio broadcaster, the late Pacifico Sumagpao Sudario and was used in 1977 to differentiate it from the Ati-atihan Festival of Kalibo.

photo by Jun Fuerte

At the fourth weekend of January each year the city of Iloilo is transformed into one huge happening with the celebration of the Iloilo Dinagyang Festival. It is a religious, spiritual and celebratory festival to honor the Child Jesus popularly known as Sr. Sto. Niño, considered as Iloilo’s patron saint. It is highlighted with the inter-tribal dance competition on the fourth Sunday along with extravagant parades in a dazzling display of colorful shiny and glittery tribal costumes, painted faces and thunderous drumbeats with shouts of "Viva Señor Santo Niño" that accompany the participating tribes.

photo by Jun Fuerte

Dancing and music have held an important role in culture of the celebration and are closely intertwined with ceremony, ritual and ancestral worship. Hear the performers move out in rhythmic steps, with vociferous shouts and wild cries of joy with the occasional clapping of hands and jerky dances keep time to the beatings of the drums. The dance develops into variety of pleasing pattern, in which the dancers change their positions which amazing speed.

For a period of 10 days starting with the festival’s opening salvo, with a hive of special events from art exhibit, travel fair, golf tournament, car show, medical mission, marathon, photo and painting exhibits, heritage tours, beauty pageant, religious parade, pyrolimpics, film, sports, fluvial procession, fashion show and food festival. It has the largest outdoor food festival in the city with a labyrinth of food stalls nestled closely together, and a hive of activity. Some stall holders sleep here in the evenings as eating and drinking rarely stops.

photo by Jun Fuerte

From its humble beginnings in 1969 the Iloilo Dinagyang Festival has snowballed into a major event on the country’s festival scene. It is as strong today as ever before, it is evident the present generation fuses the culture, customs and traditional values for future generations to uphold.

Throughout the entire Iloilo Dinagyang celebration, with this year’s theme, “A Fusion of Boom and Grandeur,” you have the opportunity to enjoy the different events, which are celebrated right here in Iloilo City:

January 4 (Friday) Miss Iloilo Dinagyang Talent Competition at 4 p.m., Robinsons Place Iloilo; January 11 (Friday) Miss Iloilo Dinagyang Festival Costume at 3 p.m., Robinsons Place Iloilo; January 12 (Saturday) Miss Iloilo Dinagyang Jetski Swimwear Fashion Show at 4 p.m., Iloilo Esplanade; January 18 (Friday) Mass for Opening Salvo at 2:30 p.m., San Jose Parish Church; January 18 (Friday) Opening Salvo at 3 p.m., City Parade Route; January 19-31 with Dinagyang Art Exhibition at the UPV Art Gallery; January 19-25 with Iloilo Travel Mart at the Mary Mart Mall; January 19-20 with Dinagyang 2013 Mayor’s Cup Golf Tournament at the Iloilo Golf and Country Club, Sta. Barbara,Iloilo; January 19-20 with Dinagyang Sound Off and Car Show at 3 p.m., SM City carpark; January 20 (Sunday) 2nd Iloilo Dinagyang Marathon at 5 a.m., SM Front Covered Walk; January 21-27 with 1st Dinagyang Photo and Painting Exhibit at the SM City Event Center; January 23 (Monday) Miss Iloilo Dinagyang Coronation Night at 7 p.m., San Agustin Gymnasium; January 24 (Thursday) Arrival of Pilgrim Image of Sr. Sto. Nino de Cebu at 7 a.m., Iloilo Portb to San Jose Church; January 24-25 with the 4th Dinagyang Pyrolympics: Luces in the Sky at 7 p.m., SM City Parking Lot; January 24-26 with Sineng Pambansa at 6 p.m., SM City Cinema; January 24-27 with Dinagyang IHRRA Food Festival at Delgado street; January 25-26 with 6th Iloilo Dinagyang National Age Group Swimfest at 5 p.m., Iloilo Sports Complex and 3rd Mayor’s Badminton Cup at the Sportsville Badminton Court, Sambag, Jaro; Januay 25-27 with Iloilo Dinagyang Street Party at 6 p.m., Delgado, Valeria, Ledesma and Iznart streets and Bonifacio Drive; January 25 (Friday) Tambor, Trumpa, Martsa, Musika at 8 a.m., Bonifacio Drive to Freedom Grandstand; January 25 (Friday) Fluvial Procession at 3 p.m., Fort San Pedro Drive to San Jose Church; January 25 (Friday) Dinagyang Dance Showdown Grand Finals at 4 p.m., SM City carpark , Kapuso Night at 7 p.m., Robinsons Place and Handog ng Bombo at Star FM at 8 p.m., SM City carpark; January 26 (Saturday) Kasadyahan Festival at 8 a.m. and Sponsosrs Mardi Gras at 2 p.m. with ABS-CBN Kapamilya Caravan at 5 p.m., SM City carpark, Religious Sadsad at 7 p.m., San Jose Church and Patis Tesoro: Metamorphosis Fashion Show at 7 p.m., Kalantiao Hall of Sarabaia Manor Hotel and Convention Center; January 27 (Sunday) Concelebrated High Mass at 6 a.m., San Jose Church; Iloilo Dinagyang Ati Contest at 8 a.m., GMA Kapuso Mall Show at 5 p.m. at the SM City carpark, Awarding Ceremony at 7 p.m., Freedom Grandstand.

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