“Cañao is a festival or ceremony, a liturgy or service, a rite or ritual and offering. It is a celebration for productive economic activities where animals are offered in thanksgiving known as Iya-ey (the term used among the Kankana-eys). Th(i)s is also done during marriages, healing, birth, burial, and voyage where prayer plays a significant role. They invoke spirits with offerings of animals, food, and other material things prescribed by (local) priests” (Igorot Cordillera BIMAAK Europe, 2013).

“Dancing is also part of Cañao. There is this two-person dance of a man and a woman. The man hangs blankets woven in an indigenous pattern or design over each shoulder while the woman wraps a single similar blanket around her waist. The man leads the woman, and they dance in a circular motion with a hop-skip tempo to the beat of sticks and gongs. The dancing continues until a member of the audience decides to honor the dancers with a shout, “Ooo wag, Hoy! Hoy,” ending the dancing" (ibid.).

Text submitted by Raizel Albano, Founder and Director of Anthro on Foot Audio Walking Tours


References Photo credit: Joanna Lerio (February 7, 2013), https://commons.wikimedia.org/wiki/File:Igorot_Ifugao_Traditional_Dance_by_Elder_Women.webm Cordillera Schools Group, Inc. (2003). Ethnography of the Major Ethnolinguistic Groups in the Cordillera. New Day Publishers. Igorot Cordillera BIMAAK Europe. (2013, June 10). CAÑAO: GLANCING INTO AN ANCIENT FILIPINO TRADITION. Igorot Cordillera BIMAAK Europe. https://www.icbe.eu/articles/216-canao-glancing-into-an-ancient-filipino-tradition
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