IT WAS A BLUE SATURDAY

Last weekend was a momentous point in Philippine hiphop history. It was the first time that another group beat the UP Street crew in the most prestigious inter-school hiphop competition, the Skechers Street Dance Battle.


At 5:00pm the gates of the big dome opened for street dance aficionados, family members, schoolmates and supporters of the delegates of the hiphop battle. Waving their school banners and clappers, the crowd went berserk when their respective bets paraded at the start of the event, where twelve high schools and sixteen colleges competed. I don’t have the high school roster but the college finalists were as follows:


Ateneo de Manila University- Company of Ateneo Dancers
Colegio de San Juan de Letran Calamba-Letran Street Dance Crew
De La Salle University Taft- La Salle Dance Company – Street
La Consolacion College Manila- Synckupado
Martinez Memorial Colleges-Martinez Dance Club
Our Lady of Fatima University QC- Perfoming Arts Guild of Fatima Dance Troupe
Our Lady of Fatima University Valenzuela- Fatima Dance Troupe
Pamantasan ng Lungsod ng Maynila- PLM iskolars Dance Incorporated
Polytechnic University of the Philippines- PUP Danz Company
Siena College Taytay- Rythmycs Dance Company
Technological Institute of the Philippines QC- TIP Talents Guild
Universidad de Manila- UDM E.Stars
University of East Manila- UE Extreme Squad
University of the Philippines Diliman- UP Streetdance Club
University of the Philippines Los Baños- UPLB Street Jazz Dance Company
University of the Philippines Manila- UP Manila Indayog Dance Varsity


The hosts were Iya, Shivaker, and another guy whose name I didn’t catch. The judges were Georcelle Dapat-Sy of G-Force, Lenny Len (hiphop choreographer fresh from the U.S.), et. al.


Due to extreme excitement for my own alma mater I failed to notice most of the high school entries. But I remember how good the Aglaia and Claret dancers were. These kids are just setting the bar higher and higher each year. As for my favorite, Dance X from Xavier School, I didn’t see much from them this year. They have always been a crowd favorite and have even won open competitions where they get to battle college champs and non-university based crews. But this year, I think they became complacent. What took my attention though, and I believe they were the single most entertaining crew that night, were the dudes from La Salle Greenhills. There were a lot of funny moments in their routine. My favorite was the Tootsie Roll(?) piece… “to the left, to the left, to the right, to the right”. HAHA!! You should have seen it. Wait, try youtube.


The winners in the high school division are St. Paul – Pasig (3rd place), Claret Hataw (2nd place), and La Salle Greenhills (1st place).


The college event was heart-wrenching. Most crews brought it hard that night. You can see that everyone really eyed the top spot – no time to relax, no time to be mediocre. The winners are UP Manila Indayog (3rd), UP Diliman (2nd), and Ateneo CADS (1st). I felt bad for UPD as they have always been champions; well except for year 4 battle where they decided to take a hiatus. But still, they are the ruling dynasty in this competition. However, CADS deserved the win, it was a little obvious. UP Street just didn’t take a lot of risks this year, unlike in previous years. And I missed that. I guess I’ll be expecting it next year, I’m pretty sure they’ll take back the throne.


If I were to judge that night though, without bias, my top three would be Ateneo CADS, UP Diliman, and UPLB. I have a couple of friends from Indayog and I know that their performance was really tight. However, UPLB (for me) gave a better performance and a better routine. But that’s just me. Of course the judges thought otherwise.


Well, all in all, it was a fun night. Another Philippine hiphop milestone had just taken place and the bar has once again moved up. It was very inspiring for us audience. And as an alumnus, I felt really proud for our resident competing team who battled that night. I couldn’t have wished for a better performance. I just wish we’d be able to snag a place next time. Any tips anyone?

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About lonewulf

I am a self-confessed 'jologs', a country boy who now works in the big city. I studied Applied Math, and am now completing Finance while working as a risk analyst. I feel extremely happy whenever I dance, draw/sketch, and write. I also like to read books, eat (not fruits, or vegetables), sleep, and travel.

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