#GoldenDinagyang opens

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TRIBU Salognon of Jaro National High School, the defending champion of the Dinagyang festival’s Ati tribes competition, added LGBTQA+ elements to their performance during the Opening Salvo on Jan 12, 2018 on the streets of City Proper, Iloilo City. Nine other tribes also gave the public a glimpse of what they can expect in the 50th Year of the best tourism event of the country. (Ricky D. Alejo)

ILOILO’S most-awaited tourism event has started, and the streets of Iloilo were filled to the brim last Jan 12, 2018 as the public got a glimpse of the 10 tribes that will compete in the Dinagyang Festival Ati Tribe competition on Jan. 28, 2018.

The Iloilo City government led by Mayor Jose Espinosa III, Vice Mayor Jeffrey Ganzon and Councilor Mandrei Malabor; the Iloilo Dinagyang Foundation, Inc. led by its president and Board of Trustees chairman Ramon Cua Locsin; and the San Jose de Placer Parish represented by Rev. Fr. Raymundo Edsel Alcayaga signaled the opening of the #GoldenDinagyang at the Iloilo Freedom Grandstand.

Themed “Dinagyang@50 Timeless Tradition, Culture, and Devotion”, the tripartite institutions are committed to working together to celebrate the 50th year of Iloilo city and province’s iconic religious and cultural event.

Ilonggos cheered for their favorite tribes, which all staged fun-filled performances to the delight of the crowd in 5 staging areas located at Iloilo Freedom Grandstand, Iloilo Provincial Capitol, Quezon-Mabini St., Delgado-Valeria St., and Maria Clara St., City Proper.

Clad in colorful costumes are members of Tribu Paghidaet of Lapaz National High School; Tribu Panayanon of Iloilo City National High School; Tribu Pan-ay of Fort San Pedro National High School; defending champion Tribu Salognon of Jaro National High School; Tribu Buntatalanit of Baranga Lanit and Buntatala; Tribu Dagatnon of Ramon Avancena National High School; Tribu Ilonganon of Jalandoni Memorial National High School; Tribu Obreros of Barrio Obrero National High School; Tribu Amihan of Mandurriao National High School; and Tribu Tapaznon of Tapaz, Capiz.

While most of the tribes staged dance presentations with the “trademark” Dinagyang moves such as precise movements of hands, head and feet, the defending champion Tribu Salognon opened their performance with a “Measure Your Life in Love” slogan, “525,600 Minutes” as opening song, and LGBT flags waved against an Ati backdrop.

“The Opening Salvo is not a contest but the tribes were told to stage a vibrant pasundayag,” said Robert Alor, Iloilo Dinagyang Festival, Inc. (IDFI) Tribes Committee chairperson.

The tribes received P1 million subsidy from IDFI, double from last year’s P500,000.

Locsin said the subsidy for the Ati tribes was doubled this year as the IDFI intends to stage grander performances commensurate with the festival’s golden year celebration.

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