Folk Dances of Different Ethnicity Analysis

Table of Content


Subli is a dance devotion performed in honor of the Mahal na Poong Santa Cruz, a large crucifix of anubing wood with the face of the sun in silver at the center.


Kuratsa is a folk dance of Waray that portrays a young playful couple’s attempt to get each other’s attention. It is performed in a moderate waltz style.

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Cariñosa is a Philippine dance of Hispanic origin from the Maria Clara suite of Philippine folk dances, where the fan or handkerchief plays an instrumental role in placing the couple in a romantic scenario.

“Philippine Folk Dances”


Pantomina is a courtship dance originated from Sorsogon that imitates the courtship and lovemaking of doves, which are then shown during the dance where men attempt to please the women.


Sakuting is a dance from the province of Abra. It was originally an all-male dance performance presenting a mock fight between Ilocano Christians and non-Christians using sticks. The dance is traditionally performed during Christmas at the town plaza or throughout the town, from one house to another.

Banga Dance:

Banga Dance is a contemporary performance of the Kalinga of the Mountain Province in the Philippines. This dance illustrates the languid grace of a tribe otherwise known as fierce warriors.

Kappa Malong-Malong:

Kappa Malong-Malong is a Muslim-influenced dance. The malong is a tubular garment, and the dance essentially shows the many ways it can be worn. There are men’s and women’s versions of the dance since they wear malongs in different ways.

“Philippine Folk Dances”

Habanera Botolena:

Habanera Botolena is a strongly flamenco-influenced dance that comes from Botolan, Zambales. It combines Filipino and Spanish steps and is a popular dance at weddings. It is also considered a courting dance in some situations.


Pasigin is a folk dance interpreting the toil in the life of the fishermen in the river called Pasig, manifesting the native means of catching the fish.


Pangalay is the traditional “fingernail” dance of the Tausūg people of the Sulu Archipelago that requires the dancer’s dexterity and flexibility of the shoulders, elbows, and wrists – movements that strongly resemble those of “kontaw silat.”


Salidsid is the Kalinga courtship dance, performed by a male and a female. The dance starts when each of the dancers is given a piece of cloth called ayob or allap. The male simulates a rooster trying to attract the attention of a hen, while the female imitates the movements of a hen being circled by a rooster. “Philippine Folk Dances.”


Uyaoy is an Ifugao wedding festival dance accompanied by gongs and is performed by the affluent to attain the second level of the wealthy class. Wealthy people who have performed this dance are entitled to the use of gongs at their death.


Dugso is a ceremonial dance that is usually performed during important occasions like kaliga (feasts) or kaamulan (tribal gatherings) among the Manobo people in Bukidnon, Agusan, and Misamis Oriental.

Sayaw sa Cuyo:

Sayaw sa Cuyo is a mazurka danced by eight girls swaying small, delicate handkerchiefs to accent turns and twirls. Tiny paper crowns make the dancers feel like young princesses. The dance originates from Cuyo, Palawan.


This dance from Lanao del Sur Province in Mindanao is usually performed to commence an important affair. Its dancers are usually from the royal court or high society group of Lanao Province. They use apir (or fan) to coordinate with their small steps called ‘kini-kini,’ which symbolizes their good manners and prominent family background. “Philippine Folk Dances.”


Lumagen is another Kalinga tribal dance. This is a traditional thanksgiving dance performed to celebrate good harvest and events such as the birth of the first-born child, victory in battles, and weddings.


Idudu is a tribal dance from the Abra province in Cordillera. This dance depicts a day in the family life of the Itneg or Tinguian tribe. It tells the story of a father plowing the field as the mother cares for her children. In time, the father and mother exchange duties as the mother finish planting and other chores in the field, and the father tends to the kids.


Kini-Kini means the Royal Walk. Maranao women performed this dance with scarves. The beauty of the scarves and the talent and grace with which it is displayed shows their elite social upbringing.


Asik is a solo slave dance from Mindanao that is usually done before the performance of singkil. The umbrella-bearing attendant performs this dance to win her sultan master’s favor. “Philippine Folk Dances.”


Imunan is a courtship dance of Ilokano origin. A beauty enters for an afternoon promenade with her suitors. At the end of the dance, the lovable and charming lady cannot select from any of her suitors.


Balsé derived from the Spanish “valse” (waltz), this dance was popular in Marikina, Rizal province, during the Spanish times. Balse was performed after the lutrina (a religious procession), and the music that accompanied the dancers was played by the musikong bungbong (musicians using instruments made of bamboo).


This dance, from Manibaug barrio, Porac, Pampanga, is usually presented by farmers during the planting season as an offering for a good harvest. The dance is usually accompanied by a corrido or musical narrative.

Galway Galway:

This dance originates from a small town in Leyte called Jaro that celebrates the bountiful harvest of the gaway–a plant of the taro family that is grown for both the vegetable and its roots. The female dancer holds a nigo (bilao in Tagalog) laden as she dances.

“Philippine Folk Dances”

Lawiswis Kawayan:

Lawiswis kawayan is known as the Waray folk dance. It is danced in the Visayas region by the Waray people. Through the years, Lawiswis kawayan has not only been danced by the Waray but also by Filipinos who have lived in different regions of the country. It is danced during house blessings.


Kuradang is a lively festival dance performed during fiestas, weddings, baptismal parties, and other occasions that call for celebration. It originated from Eastern Visayas, especially in the northern part of the province of Eastern Samar.


Gayong-gang is a playful Muslim dance that originated from the province of Aklan on the island of Panay in Capiz. In most rural areas that have get-togethers, they opt to use this dance, which gives so much joy and pleasure to both the dancers and the audience.


Kalapati is a lovely dance patterned after the characteristic movements of the kalapati or doves as they court–bowing, billing, and cooing. It depicts the typical traits of the Ilocanos (simplicity, naturalness, and shyness). It originated from Cabugao, Ilocos Sur.

“Philippine Folk Dances”


Kasanduayan is a folk dance that came from Marawi City, Lanao del Sur. Maranao women living near the shores of Lake Lanao walk nobly with their distinctive movements, most particularly their graceful sway. Girls wear tight long-sleeved blouses in royal colors such as golden yellow, green, pink, violet, and velvet red.


This dance is also called “Panderetas de Amor”. “Panderetas” means “tambourines” in Spanish. This dance portrays heavy Spanish influence. The dance is from Manila and has been included in their Maria Clara Suite.


Ragragsakan is an adaptation of a tradition in which Kalinga women gather and prepare for a budong, or peace pact. This dance portrays the walk of the industrious Kalinga women, carrying water pots on their heads and wearing the colorful hand-woven “blankets of life” around their necks. Their walk imitates the climb up the Rice Terraces in the Mountain Provinces of the Philippines.


Sapayatan reveals traces of Spanish and indigenous Filipino. Sapayatan originates in Pampanga, Luzon. The dance is presented to farmers as an offering for good harvest. The name “Sapayatan” may have originated from the Spanish term, “Zapateado.” “Philippine Folk Dances”

Polka sa Plaza:

Polka sa Plaza is a grand parade of beautiful ladies in their traditional Spanish gowns called Maria Clara and parasols (umbrellas). With their partners, wearing their traditional Barongs, they gladly parade, beginning from the churchyard and going around the town.

Pandanggo Oasiwas:

Pandanggo Oasiwas literally means ‘Fandango with the Light’ in the English language. This dance is from Lubang Island, Mindoro. The term ‘pandanggo’, which means ‘fandanggo’ in the Spanish language, is actually a dance that is characterized by marking time with the use of the clack of castanets, the snapping of the fingers, and the stomping of the feet in triple-time rhythm.


Tausug dancers are trained by highly-skilled dance trainers who strictly adhere to the traditional style of their dances. The Maglangka (meaning ‘to dance’) rehearses young trainees to the correct posturing or hand movements and placements, which are, in turn, very basic in learning more elaborate Tausug dances like the Pangalay.


Binoyugan is a dance originally from the Ilocano region of Pangasinan. Binoyugan (beeh-noh-YOOH-gahn) features women balancing on their heads a banga or clay pot which they use to fetch water from the river or well or in which to cook rice. The dance culminates with the women lying stomach down on stage and rolling from side to side, all while balancing the pot. “Philippine Folk Dances.”


Its name is derived from the plant of the same name having a peculiar hot and aromatic smell. Female dancers hold handkerchiefs scented with the “alcamfor” (naphtalene balls) believed to induce romance. The dance came from Leyte.


B’laan is a Courtship dance of Davao del Sur imitating forest birds during the mating season. All movements of the Blit-B’laan are done with the knees slightly bent.

Pasikat na baso:

Pasikat Na Baso (Pangapisan, Pangasinan) Pasikat means to show off, and baso means drinking glass. Dancers display good balance, graceful movements, and unusual skill on the top of a bench with the use of four glasses half full of water or wine.


The Tiklos is a native peasant dance of Leyte. Tiklos (also called “pintakasi”) is the Waray equivalent of the “bayanihan.” Groups of people work for somebody without hoping for anything in return. The peasants cooperate for the social and economic progress of their community. “Philippine Folk Dances.”


Tinolabong is a dance of the mountain people of Panilan and Loctugan, Capiz. This dance is named after a bird called tolabong in Capiz. Carabaos like the birds as they peck at the ticks, flies, mosquitoes, and other insects. The dance imitates the movements of the birds. Girl dancers wear red or white skirts and white loose blouses with long sleeves and a close neck like a chambra. Boys wear red or white trousers and white camisa de chino. Both are barefoot.

Polka Sa Nayon:

This dance comes from the province of Batangas in the Tagalog Region of the Philippine Islands. In the old days, it was very popular and was usually danced at all the big social affairs and town fiestas.

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Folk Dances of Different Ethnicity Analysis. (2016, Jun 29). Retrieved from

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