Are you ready to learn the easiest Filipino folk dances with steps? The Philippine folk dance steps look similar which makes it easy to learn even for beginners with no background in Filipino folk dance.
The Philippines has been colonized by different countries like Japan, Spain, and America because merchants from neighboring countries and even the far away ones went there to conduct business. These events are part of what makes the diverse culture of the country. We even have borrowed words from the Spanish and English language. The influence is not limited to the language, but is also found in some celebrations as well like fiestas and in religion (Catholicism). Some of our practices and even our fashion are from our foreign influencers. Someone who has visited the Philippines might notice the various physical features of a Filipino. We have dark skinned, fair skinned, and the in-between skin color, not dark and not fair. We call it Morena for the female and Moreno for the male. The Philippines is made of different regions and each one has its own language. Tagalog is not the only language Filipinos speak as many are spoken, like Ilocano, Cebuano, Waray, Tausug, Kapampangan, and Chavacano. Most Filipinos have all learned Tagalog for it is one of the academic subjects taught in school, although the curriculum promotes each native language to be practiced in school.
Just as with languages, each region has its own trademark folk dance as well and some of these folk dances are Spanish influenced. The Philippine folk dances list covers them from A to Z and only a few are taught in school, but if you want to learn almost all of them, you can enroll in a class that specializes in Philippine folk dances. To get off on the right foot, it’s good to know the 8 basic fundamental steps of folk dance, which are the hayon-hayon, kumintang, curtsy, bow or saludo, bilao, Jaleo, abrasete, and the waltz. Other basic folk dance steps and positions are do-si-do, the arms in reverse “T” position, arms in lateral position, brush, salok, point, and many more. The Philippine folk dance step patterns vary on what folk dance you will be performing, and Spanish and English are the influences of the Philippine folk dance steps that you will find mentioned on our list. If you are having a hard time following the written steps, you can look up the basic steps in folk dance with pictures so you have a reference to the proper execution of steps. The steps of Filipino folk dances are easy to learn though, and it won’t take long before you can perform a full folk dance. The Easiest Ballroom Dances to Learn For Weddings is another foreign influence Filipinos learned to embrace and even perform at their weddings.
When you are learning Filipino folk dances you are also learning about the rich culture of the Philippines. From Luzon to Mindanao, there are specific folk dances in each of these major islands, and each folk dance tells different stories. Some of them are influenced by foreign culture and some are dances native to the land. These dances help represent events like weddings, fiestas, and even funerals. Others portray how people make a living whether they work as fishermen or farmers, and each dance has its own story to tell. A Physical Education class is a great way to learn these dances, and it is compulsory for Filipinos to learn them. Almost all have a common basic step so it is not really hard to learn the different folk dances they have. Philippine Folk Dances and Pagdiriwang Philippine Festival were the main sources we’ve used to make our list. You will find that we have listed our dances in a random order.
Our list of easiest Filipino folk dances with steps offers a variety of dances that represent the culture of the Philippines.
7. Sayaw Sa Banga
A folk dance hailed from Kalinga in Luzon is the Sayaw sa Banga. Banga is an earthen jar used by women to fetch water, and the dance portrays a warrior claiming his bride. It is also a dance to entertain the guests. Women balance six to eight jars on their heads, and not a single pot should fall down. The basic steps of Sayaw sa Banga are small bouncing steps, stomp, and brush to the beat of wind chimes. The hands are usually on the waist or stretched sideward.
6. Pandanggo Sa Ilaw
We are continuing our list of easiest Filipino folk dances with steps with a dance derived from the Spanish word fandango is the very popular folk dance in the Philippines, Pandanggo sa Ilaw. Oil lamps were traditionally used in this dance, but later on, they started using a glass with a candle instead. The more modern version uses battery powered lamps. This dance originated in Mindoro where the women used their oil lamps to guide fishermen back to the shore. Oil lamps (or glasses with candels, or battery powered lamps) are carried in both hands and on the head as well. The dance is in 3/4 rhythm and the beat of the music becomes faster and faster. The dancers wore baro’t saya for women and barong Tagalog for men. The basic step for Pandanggo sa Ilaw is touch-step-touch and do-si-do accompanied by clapping or snapping of fingers.
5. Kappa Malong Malong
A Muslim dance originating from Cotabato, Mindanao is Kappa Malong Malong or Sambi sa Malong. A malong is a tube skirt which is known not only because it is colorful but also for its many functions. This traditional cloth is hand-weaved or machine made with striking designs. This can be worn as a skirt, used as a blanket, a headpiece, and even a baby carrier. The folk dance portrays the different functions of the malong and the basic footwork is the point step and cross step. Knowing Muslims wear shimmering clothing, that can be a perfect costume for this dance but you can wear black tights and leotards to enhance the colorful malong.
On the fourth spot of our list of 7 easiest Filipino folk dances with steps is the Tinikling. Tinikling refers to the tikling bird, and Tinikling means “tikling-like.” This is the most popular dance in the Philippines. It may look difficult for a pair of dancers would hop in between clap beating bamboos but it is actually easy to learn. Tinikling may be a fun dance but looking back in the Spanish era, it was a form of punishment for the farmers who are slow with their work. The basic steps for the dance are singles, doubles, and hops.
3. Itik Itik
Itik means duck and in the Itik Itik folk dance dancers are mimicking the movements of a duck like the flying and waddling. The Itik Itik is a great addition to our list of easiest Filipino folk dances with steps because you can pick it up in no time. Step and hop are the basic steps which are accompanied by a flowing hand motion. This folk dance is hailed from Surigao but there are also versions from the Visayas. The Samar version even has a song which tells about the ducks laying eggs.
2. La Jota Moncadeña
Among top two easiest Filipino folk dances with steps we have a dance performed during funerals and influenced by Spanish era is La Jota Moncadeña. This dance hailed in Tarlac, a northern part of Luzon. Bamboo castanets are held by the dancers and the steps seem to console each other. The basic footwork is step, brush, and hop. There are various versions of La Jota that come from the different provinces of the Philippines. Two examples are is La Jota Manileña and La Jota Caviteña.
Another dance introduced by the Spaniards to Filipinos is the Cariñosa. This folk dance can best be described as a courtship dance with flirtatious movements. The basic movements are three steps and point, touch step, and waltz. Cariñosa which means loving or affectionate is from the Visayas. In this folk dance dancers use a fan and handkerchief. The dancers wear a Maria Clara dress for women and Barong Tagalog for men.
Try and learn any of these 7 easiest Filipino folk dances with steps and you just might surprise yourself at how natural you can make it look.