Parangal Dance Company Among the 300 dancers and 30 internationally-focused dance companies who auditioned and selected to perform is Parangal Dance Company, headed by its Director, Eric Solano. This year, Parangal is proud to present Pangaddatan sin Ta’u Sug (Ta’u Sug customs and traditions) on June 21-22.
Solano, who has also been recently selected as Master Artist by Alliance for California Tradition Arts for the Ta’u Sug Pangalay dance form, personally went to the Philippines to immerse and research the tradition, culture and dance of the Ta’u Sugs.
Helping him with the story or piece for their performance is Ta’u Sug Cultural Master Sitti Obeso or Aunty Lingling, to make sure that the group’s attire, songs, chants and all details are authentic and true to the Ta’u Sug culture. Aunty Lingling, to make sure that the group’s attire, songs, chants and all details are authentic and true to the Ta’u Sug culture. Aunty Lingling is also a former member of the pioneering Ta’u Sug performing arts, the Dayang-Dayang Dance Troupe, which was founded in the 1970s.
Ta’u Sug comes from two words: ta’u means person, and sug, current. They are coastal people of the current from Jolo, Sulu, Tawi-Tawi and other parts of Sulu archipelago in Philippines including Davao, are known for their colorful vinta boats and mastery in weaving, embroidery, pottery, and goldsmithing. Ta’u Sugs are well known for dance— Pangalay, rooted in tradition that predates the arrivals of both Christianity and Islam in the Philippines.
In the premiere of "Sayap," Eric Solano, director of Parangal Dance Company, offered an opulently appointed narrative from the Philippines' Pulangi River basin. The tale is about courtship, strife and a wedding, but everything here - from the gorgeously constructed costumes and the sublime gamelan score to the exciting Filipino bamboo pole dances - bespoke artistry and commitment of the highest order.
Allan Ulrich - San Francisco Chronicle's Dance Correspondent
Parangal Dance Company offered a show-stopping Philippines wedding celebration from Mindinao. Created by Eric Solano, in a series that included dances for women in silk robes, with sinuously curving wrists; a secret meeting between the engaged couple; an intense martial arts fight with knives and poles and kicks, including elements contributed by Indonesian, Malaysian, and Chinese immigrants to the Philippines, and an amazing performance of the traditional bamboo pole dance called Singkil, where dancers’ ankles dodge the slamming poles in the nick of time. Capping it was the bride’s arrival under wraps, in a sedan chair. She was revealed in a glory of white and gold brocade to her waiting prince and subjects beneath canopies of turquoise and fluttering flags, and everyone danced on to a happy ending.
Janice Bergman - San Francisco Classical Voice
SF Chronicle - Mary Ellen Hunt, Special to the Chronicle 33nd Ethnic Dance Festival June 2011 "The Parangal Dance Company offered Filipino-inspired "Subanen," a mélange of ceremonial evocations, from an ethereal dance for women delicately balancing bowls on their heads that sounded like small bells to the earthy clash of bamboo poles and swish of a sinalimba, an enormous swinging platform."
SF Chronicle - Allan Ulrich 32nd Ethnic Dance Festival June 2010 "Among the discoveries was the Parangal Dance Company's fervent facsimile of a religious ritual from the Philippine islands of Palawan and Mindanao. Erik Espartinez Solano's choreography begins with an introspective women's candle ceremony, which yields to a more boisterous section for men with banners. Sheaves of grain reinforce the piece's function as a fertility rite."
DigitalJournal.com - Jonathan Farrel Asia On Stage September 2010 "The finale-spectacular, was a rousing expression of folk and age-old tribal dances performed by the Parangal Dance Company."