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Cebu News

Rules govern Grand Parade, exec assures

The Freeman

CEBU, Philippines – Performances of contingents in the Sinulog Grand Parade have leveled up every year in the 35 years of the festival and to ensure that competition remains fair and professional, the Sinulog Foundation also needed to live up to expectations.

Sinulog Foundation Executive Director Ricky Ballesteros said that as expected from them as organizers, the foundation will implement its guidelines to the letter.

“If you want to upgrade your festival, you have to check and you have to make sure that everything is in place. You have to consider the safety of the dancers, participants. You have to make sure that huge props will be properly used,” he said.

Ballesteros said the festival and the performances are getting more technical and grand every year.

He shared that when he started as executive director of SFI, the stage had no backdrop yet.

“I was the emcee yet. Pagkita nako, hugaw kaayo kay you can see the props at the back. The following year, I put plywood, one plywood lang. After that year, nitaas naman pod ilang mga props, so nag-add napod ko og another plywood which is 16 feet na,” he said.

In every year that followed, the foundation became more stringent with its rules such as deducting points from contingents that violate the guidelines.

He recalled the time they deducted up to 20 points from the popular Lumad Basakanon of Barangay Basak San Nicolas, Cebu City.

“That time, the props were so huge already so we again changed the guidelines not to use the wheels so that they can carry their props along the parade route and they cannot make their props na very huge na, which is bigger than our stage. So, we discouraged them from using by putting in the guidelines that no wheels that will be used sa props,” he said.

Another instance that prompted the foundation to set new rules was when the contingent from Parañaque used a crane to life its lead dancer, actress and now politician Alma Moreno.

Ballesteros clarified that the use of props can make or break a performance.

He said any contingent with a clear message of the presentation that has relevance to the religious festivity can make it to the top if they will also present a unique concept.

Last year’s guidelines are what will be used to judge the contingents today.

For the Sinulog Based and Free Interpretation category, huge backdrops like risers and the like are prohibited and a five-point deduction would be imposed against violators.

Contingents are limited to a five-minute routine and a three-point deduction would be imposed on violators.

Using of infants or toddlers and live animals are prohibited in the presentation and doing so would mean a three-point deduction.

Ballesteros said the foundation is flexible and will not hesitate to change the guidelines especially if the safety of the participants are at stake. — Jean Marvette A. Demecillo/JMO (FREEMAN)

ACIRC ALMA MORENO BALLESTEROS CEBU CITY FOR THE SINULOG BASED AND FREE INTERPRETATION JEAN MARVETTE A LUMAD BASAKANON OF BARANGAY BASAK SAN NICOLAS PROPS SINULOG FOUNDATION SINULOG FOUNDATION EXECUTIVE DIRECTOR RICKY BALLESTEROS SINULOG GRAND PARADE
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