Thursday, December 20, 2012

Kasadya-an Festival: Enjoy Yourself!

One thing that I am learning about Filipino culture is they love to celebrate by parading, festivals, and fireworks displays.  As soon as I stepped off the airplane this past October, it was the start of festival season, which mostly means celebrating the upcoming Christmas holiday.  There are several different types of festivities, and last week, Foundation University celebrated the annual Kasadya-an, or "enjoy yourself" festival.  For an entire week, students shift their focus from school work to creating holiday displays and nativity scenes, sewing costumes, practicing dance routines for parades and competitions, and watching the Hara pageant for Miss Foundation University.  Needless to say, the school is transformed into a stage for all these occurring events.  After attending at least one event every night of the festival, I'm happy to say it has come to a close.  The students prioritize these sorts of events, and they put a lot of pride and care into their work.  I haven't seen the students work this hard in studio, until now for the Kasadya-an festival.  I'm wondering if there is a strategy to motivate the students like what I have witnessed this past week.  I may have to propose the student's perform a group dance routine for their next master planning presentation on the Banica River study.  We'll see.

Students craft a metal Christmas tree from recycled aluminum cans.  Each college department is required to create a festive display outside of their classroom buildings, where they are judged for a winning prize.

Detail of the finished metal Christmas tree for the department of architecture.

During the Kasadya-an festival, each college nominates a female student to run for the Hara pageant.  Shown are the nominees after they just performed their talent.

Also, each college puts on a very elaborate musical dance performance.  They are judged according to the best set design, lead dancer, choreography, and costumes.  These are some of the best performances to watch in Dumaguete for this level of competition.  I was certainly impressed with the costumes and the energy brought by the talented dancers!
Student performers giving it their all!

The photo was taken from above the green field on campus where student organizations and each college designs booths to represent their department.  The booths are suppose to creatively demonstrate what each department offers in terms of education.  I was one of the judges for this event.  The photo shows me and the other judges lined up in front of the crowd, waiting to announce the winners.  Photo by Paul Benzi Sebastian Florendo.

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