Filipino Club dances to third place in Battle of the Bamboo

Niles North’s Filipino Club won third place in BOTB (Battle of the Bamboo) on April 16 at the University of Illinois Chicago. 

If you haven’t heard of Battle of the Bamboo, it is a dance where students get to choose an ancient cultural story that originated from the Philippines. This year, Filipino Club chose to do Haliya and Bulan who are both siblings and are considered to be the God and Goddess of the moon. Once they chose their story, they choreographed a dance to depict the story. 

North Star News interviewed some members of the club to share their thoughts on the experience. 

When asked about his favorite part of being in Battle of the Bamboo, Freshman Andrew Nguyen, a dancer for BTOB, said, “My favorite part was definitely hell week, we had a lot of practice usually staying until 10 pm, but we also had a lot of bonding time.” 

There are many different roles each student can take on to participate in the team. 

“Anyone is welcome to join, and no experience is required,” Junior Giselle Gube, an intern and a dancer for the team, said. “Everyone has a place to participate when it comes to BOTB, whether that be with the actual dancing, props and costume making, or music.”

You don’t even need to be Filipino to join the group.

You do not have to be Filipino nor know how to dance!”  BOTB coordinator and dancer senior Bianca Siron said. “Bring your friends too! BOTB changed my life and it really is an experience!” 

At first it was scary because of the idea of performing in front of a lot of people but it’s really not that bad. The performance was really fun,” freshman Annaya D. Santos said. 

Pullquote Photo

The anxiety and excitement that built up right before I went on stage were one of the best feelings in the world. The feeling when I got off that stage was even better. ”

— Giovanni Bautista, sophomore

Preparing for the competition can be a lot of hard work, but the end result is worth it.

 “The anxiety and excitement that built up right before I went on stage were one of the best feelings in the world,” sophomore Giovanni Bautista, intern, and dancer said. “The feeling when I got off that stage was even better.”

If you are interested in joining Battle of the Bamboo, you can attend the Filipino club next year in room 1100! Follow their Instagram for more updates! Email Charlene Taba at [email protected] with any additional questions. Watch the 2021 Battle of the Bamboo here.