Filipino Georgia Tech students go viral with a modernized folk dance performance set to Lil Nas X song

filipino folk dance
Image: @gt.fsa
  • The Filipino Student Association of the Georgia Institute of Technology went viral on social media for their “Gen Z” rendition of the traditional Philippine folk dance “Tinikling.”
  • The group’s performance, which was uploaded to Facebook on April 18, has garnered more than 6 million views as of this writing.
  • As part of a cultural event, the students danced to the song “Dolla Sign Slime” by rapper Lil Nas X.
  • The “Tinikling” folk dance involves bamboo poles that are rhythmically tapped on the ground and knocked together repeatedly while dancers move in between the poles. It is traditionally performed to rondalla music.

A “Gen Z” performance of a traditional Philippine folk dance by students from Georgia Institute of Technology went viral on social media.

The university’s Filipino Student Association performed a modern interpretation of the “Tinikling” folk dance, the national dance of the Philippines, for a cultural event on April 16.

The group’s performance, which was uploaded to Facebook on April 18, has garnered more than 6 million views and over 100,000 reshares as of this writing.

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The “Tinikling” folk dance originated during the Spanish colonial era in the Philippines. It involves bamboo poles that are rhythmically tapped on the ground and knocked together repeatedly while dancers move in between the poles. The footwork-focused dance movements include hopping, jumping and skipping.

Traditionally, the folk dance is performed to rondalla music, which is an ensemble of stringed instruments that was introduced to the Philippines in the 15th century by Spain.

The students, however, developed their own interpretation of the fast-paced dance to Lil Nas X’s “Dolla Sign Slime.”

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The performance was choreographed by Ethan Ray, the first dancer seen in the video, who created the piece for the group’s “Halo Halo Mixer,” hosted to showcase Filipino culture at the university. 

“We served Filipino food (including Halo Halo) and performed traditional Filipino dances (tinikling, cariñosa, pandanggo sa ilaw) as well as modern dances that included a modernized version of tinikling,” Erin Floresca, the co-vice president of the association, told When In Manila. “Through this event, we wanted to exhibit Filipino Culture to our university, which we felt lacked significant Filipino representation.”

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