Hikam is a ceremonial mat where the baylans are seated as they chant the panawagtawag and burn the tollob. In this ritual, the gimbal is played with a progressing tempo until it reaches the climax. The baylans dance wild like Tahitian, chants, supplicates, and wails to persuade the concerned spirits to come in, to appeal to the bussow or evil spirit to leave the patient, and to inform the diwata of the nature of the patients’ ailment for proper medical advice. Ropes are placed around the area or house of the patient.
The Story of Suot and Lumak
Suot was a daughter of a famous witch in one tribe. She was very beautiful and was married to Lumak a fearless warrior during that time. Despite her immeasurable love toLumak and her desire to give her husband a baby, their relation did not succeed. Lumakbecame so much desirous to have a baby of his own but his wife, despite the many rituals conducted was unable to give birth to one. He envy much couples around with kids and this resulted into an affair with another woman who was able to give him a child. The incident resulted into Suot’s committing suicide. Suot’s mother has blamed Lumak for the death of her only child and cursed Lumak to have every woman he touches, young or old, married or not, to get pregnant and give birth to dead babies. The whole tribe was alarmed and performed a ritual to asked forgiveness to what Lumak has done. The appearance of Suot’s spirit has released Lumak from the curse but her mother’s anger did not end with her daughter’s forgiveness to what her husband has done to her.
– PANGKAT SILAYAN THEATRE COLLECTIVE
The Bagobo, one among the leading group of indigenous people in Davao City, exhibits very colorful roots of their culture and arts through their dance and music. Among the most common dance performances is the Bagobo Festival comprising sets of dances that interpret their economic activity ending into a social gathering. The Pangkat Silayan Theatre Collective of the University of Southeastern Philippines would be very glad to show case an excerpt of the festival in their most authentic interpretation of “Sayow ka manto Taladuma” and “Todak”.
Sayow Ka Manto Taladuma (Dance)
This dance of the Bagobo-Tagabawa tribe is usually performed during social gatherings especially after a good harvest as a thanksgiving for everyone who has helped newly wed couples in starting their living. As a social dance originating in Todaya, Sta. Cruz, Davao del Sur, this performing art work depicts happy moods of newly wed couples while clearing the field after a slash and burn activity. After marriage, couples are usually given an area in the forest for them to cultivate. Other couples related to the man would join the activity with their wives. Men and wives tease each other playing with charcoals and dancing atop unburned trunks of trees. Men would be using long poles to clear the ground from charcoals of burned trees; women would have a pair of red handkerchiefs to wipe out charcoal markings in the face of their husbands. At some time, women would entertain their husbands by dancing and playing with a sauroy exhibiting their balancing skills of performing atop leftover trunks of burned trees that has remained standing on the ground with unstable balance that would easily seem to breakdown. Men would follow with their faglhong and the couples would be dancing and singing together while teasing each other.