All the hard work, dedication, and passion. The sense of family that grows with every passing moment. Representing our culture with the utmost pride and integrity. This is what Barkada is all about. This is why I keep coming back year after year, performance after performance. From the bottom of my heart, I love Barkada.
Worried, nervous, terrified. Those were the emotions running through me throughout the day. Despite having performed in Battle for the past two years, I felt more pressure than I ever have in my life. Even after all the runthroughs we had, I still felt unprepared. What if I made a mistake? What if I forgot the choreography? What if I ended an eight count late? What if I just wasn’t good enough?
Yet fear wasn’t the only thing I felt. At the same I was also thrilled, excited, and most of all, happy. I couldn’t wait to start our performance because that’s when I’m at my best: thriving off the energy.
Once I stepped on stage, all of the negatives disappeared. I fell out of reality and into the world of Binaylan-Banog. I became the hunter, out on a mission to kill the sacred hawk, and from there everything just fell into place. With each passing count, every move made, without having to see anything I could feel that all the dancers became their characters as well and were giving it their all. Intensity, energy, and emotion filled the forum. Everything was perfect. And the judge’s proved that with their humbling comments.
As Cheryl and I exited the auditorium, we could hear everyone going insane. The sight upon entering our room was incredible. Everyone was screaming, jumping for joy, hugging one another, and crying with tears of pride. I was completely overwhelmed by everyone’s emotions. That genuine happiness I saw amongst everyone is something I will never forget.
I’m proud of all the dancers, musicians, advisors, and dancers that helped make this performance possible. Most of all, I’m proud of my ading Christine and cousin Fides, who put in countless hours and made so many sacrifices for something that they are truly passionate about. I’m incredibly honored to have been a part of this dance. Battle of the Bamboo 2012, and the journey we we took to get there, was honestly one of the greatest experiences of my life.