Indak Indak sa Kadalanan in Davao City’s Kadayawan

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Kadayawan Indak Indak in Davao City, Philippines.
The sun was scorching hot at eight in the morning, typical Davao weather. As local TV networks started broadcasting live feeds of the goings-on in the streets, spectators slowly filled the sidewalks while photographers and tourists willfully took shots of the practicing dancers.

It’s always the same scene every year. Though the costumes, dancers and routines vary, the palpable current of excitement is constant. It was the day of the most awaited Indak Indak sa Kadalanan, a grand showcase of dances and rituals in the major streets of Davao City. Themed “Ten Tribes, One Vibe”, Kadayawan 2012’s street dance competition was participated by 20 contingents, some representing the different tribes residing in the city.

Indak means ‘dance’ and Kadalanan means ‘streets’; Indak indak sa Kadalanan is essentially a street dance competition inviting contenders from as far as the Cotabato provinces. The competition was divided into two categories: open and Davao-based. Each category’s champions received half a million pesos.

Kadayawan Festival Indak Indak dancers in traditional costumes.

Days before the height of the Kadayawan festivities, Davao City Mayor Sara Duterte-Carpio confidently declared that this year’s showcase will be grander and more colorful. The statement proved to be a prophesy-came-true as the streets of the city literally burst into a thousand colors as the revelers gyrated in abandon to the loud drumbeats accompanied by the clanging of gongs, kulintangans and other traditional musical instruments.

The length of Roxas Avenue was filled with participants in astounding colorful costumes and local and foreign tourists carrying all sorts of cameras, from the simple point-and-shoot to the nifty, state-of-the-art DSLRs. The dancers gladly posed for the crowds, flashing big smiles for the cameras and willingly posing in the middle of rehearsals.

Before the actual parade started, participants teased the crowds by mini-rehearsals, stopping every now and then to take refreshments, retouch their make-up or fix their costumes. The beating sun seemed unnoticed by everyone on the streets; all eyes and ears were on the dancers and contagious rhythm of their music. The Kadayawan vibe was evident and it reverberated even to the northern cities of Metro Manila.

At the end of the day, 10 groups went home with bigger smiles than the rest. Surprisingly, most of the Davao-based winners were grade school students. Somehow, this gives the promise of more years of show-stopping entertainment in the streets as these children will expectedly continue to grace the festival annually.

Here the are winners of the 2012 Indak Indak sa Kadalanan:


  • 1st Place – Jesus Soriano National High School
  • 2nd Place – Sta. Ana Performing Arts Guild
  • 3rd Place – Tribu Kalibungan of Fatima Elementary School
  • 4th Place – San Isidro Elementary School
  • 5th Place – Vicente Hizon Elementary School

Open Category:

Kadayawan Festival Open Category Champions.

  • 1st Place – Bamban National High School
  • 2nd Place – Notre Dame of Sto. Niño
  • 3rd Place – Kutawato Institute of Technology
  • 4th Place – Mabuyok Surigao del Norte
  • 5th Place – Bobongan Dance Arts Talaingod

The Indak Indak sa Kadalanan has never failed to impress each spectator and this year’s version was no exception. In fact, the performances are better than last year’s. If this trend is maintained, next year’s gaiety is expected be to grander, bigger and more vibrant. We can’t wait for the next Kadayawan!


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