Luzviminda: the Philippines Dances for Canada 150

The dance troupe with professor, dressed in traditional dress
The dance troupe with professor, dressed in traditional dress

From folk dance to hip hop, “Luzviminda: the Philippines Dances for Canada 150” is a dynamic program of dance that celebrates Filipino-Canadians and the embodiment and expression of their diasporic identities. A portmanteau, the title “Luzviminda” represents the three groups of islands that comprise the Philippine archipelago and the provenance of Filipino immigrants in Canada. The show runs Oct. 26 to 28 in York University’s Sandra Faire & Ivan Fecan Theatre.

Artistic Director Patrick Alcedo, a professor in the Department of Dance in the School of the Arts, Media, Performance & Design and the recent recipient of the Golden Balangay Awards’ Pinoy of the Year award for outstanding Filipinos in Canada, explains the cultural significance of one of the elaborately costumed folk dances to be performed:


Singkil is a dance of royalty that originated in Mindanao, the large island in the south, and is performed by Philippine dance groups within and outside the Philippines. It tells the story of a princess lost in a forest who is rescued by a prince.

Pandanggo Sa Ilaw and Wasiwas

Pandanggo Sa Ilaw and Wasiwas is a combination of two dances of lights from Visayas in the central Philippines and Luzon in the northern region of the country. Both these dances are strongly influenced by the Spanish fandango. The lights the young man is holding are for welcoming the fisherman back to the shore.


Salidsid is a dance of courtship in the Cordillera, the northernmost area of Luzon, the country’s largest and most populous island. It is a dance of skill that takes the solo female dancer many years of practice to learn to balance many pots.

Alcedo (kneeling on the left) poses with the dancers

Alcedo is the production’s artistic director. Choreography is by Flordeliza Punzalan. The guest choreographer is York Professor Susan Cash and the director of design is York Professor William Mackwood. The performance features Josie de Leon, Lilac Caña and Paulo Alcedo, with Breadcrumbs Crew, Culture Philippines Ontario, Fiesta Filipina, Folklorico Filipino Canada and the York Dance Ensemble.

Performances will take place on Oct. 26 and 27 at 7:30pm. On Oct. 28, the performance will take place at 1:30pm.

Tickets are $15 ($10 students/seniors) and can be obtained by calling 416-736-5888 or visiting the online box office at

Produced with the support of Canada150@York and the City of Toronto through the Toronto Arts Council and the Canada Council for the Arts.