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Dance Culture 
Place of OriginTapaz, Capiz
Ethnolinguistic GroupSulod
Background / Content

As Magellan’s expedition went past the island of Panay in the 16th century, on the way to Cebu, his chronicler Fr. Pigafetta took notice of “painted” people standing on the shores prompting him to call them “pintados”. Probably what he saw were the natives, whose bodies and faces were tattoed (tattoing being the fad then). Four hundred years later the same ‘pintados’ now known also Sulod, Montecas, Mundo, Bukidnon and Bukil inhabit the mountains of Tapaz, the apex where the provinces of Ilo-ilo, Aklan and Capiz meet. Few have survived the onslaught of modernism and those who did still continue to practice long revered traditions which include planting, weaving, black smithing, hunting and enjoy the fat of the land by music and dance.

In 1986 several Mundo tribesmen were invited to Roxas City, Capiz to join in one of the city’s annual
celebrations. The women were impressive in their piña blouse (an Aklan contribution), plaid cotton skirtsan Ilo-ilo influence) and a scarf which proved to be a very important prop in the dance they presented. Strands of silver-coin necklaces (of Queen Isabel and Alfonso XII(vintages) decorated their breasts cascading down their waists. The men were simple in a hand span g-string with no body ornaments. They also used a scarf.Ancient brass gongs and drums lent music to the exotic dance called BANOG-BANOG which imitate the menacing bird of prey – the hawk. Banog-banog’s extraordinary body contursions, contractions, pulls and stretches, in the opinion of some modern dancers, may blend perfectly into Martha Graham’s dance movements.

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