Tboli Cultural Dance

Sunita is one of the cultural dancers of her community in Lemsnolon, Tboli, South Cotabato. On my stay in her community, she graciously showed me the steps to a dance that mimics ducks. Indigenous dances display the wonders of creation. Dance steps trace their origin from natural phenomenon. Movements of the hands, the feet and the whole upper and lower body signify how animals move, how rivers flow, how humans interact.

Efforts for local culture conservation is being done by the Tboli community in Lemsnolon. I was blessed enough to witness and document their local festival which tourists were not invited. Their festival encouraged young Tboli girls to wear their traditional clothes and learn their dances.

Shot on assignment while filming a documentary about Bird dances in the Philippines. October is National Indigenous People’s Month. This is Kathleen Lei Limayo, a documentary filmmaker, photographer and visual anthropologist based in the Philippines. This month, I will be sharing some of the stories of indigenous peoples I have journeyed with.