By Tara Yap
ILOILO CITY – It took 10 years for Tribu Paghidaet of La Paz National High School in this city to regain the championship in the tribes competition for this year’s Dinagyang Festival.
Tribu Paghidaet won the performance in Sunday’s highlight of the annual festival in honor of the Santo Niño (Holy Child Jesus).
Tribu Paghidaet also won all minor awards including Best in Performance, Best in Choreography, Best in Music, Best in Production Design, Best in Discipline, and the People’s Choice Award.
The Sunday tribe performances was anchored on the Barter of Panay—a folklore on how Bornean migrants made a pact with the native Ati people to inhabit the island of Panay—while embracing the Christian faith by honoring the Santo Niño. Tribu Paghidaet’s performance also depicted the practices of the Babaylans or shamans.
Under new management, this year’s Dinagyang Festival had drastic changes, including the 360-degree performance.
The Iloilo Festivals Foundation Inc. (IFFI) also scrapped the annual Kasadyahan, which was the Saturday competition among festivals in Iloilo province and Western Visayas region.
Instead, there was the “Dagyang sa Calle Real” event. It brought back barangay tribes in an attempt to let Ilonggos join in the fun and revive how the festival was during the 1970s and before 2000s. However, it fell short of the grand plan with regular people not being able to join in the merrymaking with the tribes.
“We apologize for any shortcomings that may have occurred. It is a continuing learning process for us. Rest assured, we’ll make it better in the coming years,” said Iloilo City Mayor Jerry Treñas in a Monday statement.