What comes to mind when one mentions dance in the UAAP? As one of the most anticipated events in the UAAP, without a doubt, one would automatically think of the Cheerdance Competition. With the death defying stunts and highly energetic routines, it is hard not to miss out on an entertaining showcase of talent and skill. With dance continually getting bigger and bigger in the UAAP, another dance event is starting to acquire momentum and popularity on the UAAP stage.
UAAP Streetdance Competition
Dance is a very popular art form in the Philippines and Filipinos are recognized as some of the best dancers in the world. Given that dancers in the country would want to showcase their talent and skill with fellow counterparts, a need for competition was created. As the dance community in the Philippines grows at an increasing rate, the UAAP satisfied the demand for competition by opening its doors to the creation of the street dance competition.
The UAAP Street Dance Competition is one of the youngest competitions in the UAAP, as the competition only started back in 2011. Back in Season 73, DLSU had the privilege of being the host and was able to make history by bagging the first ever street dance title. Recently concluding its seventh year, another milestone in UAAP dance was made with the inclusion of a juniors division.
Similar to the cheerdance competition, the nature of the event is routine-based, making it different from other UAAP events such as basketball, volleyball, and football. Routine-based competitions do not require contact with opponents as teams would only showcase their individual pieces to the audience and judges.
Despite this, LSDC-Street Company Manager, Claudine Inocencio shared in a previous interview that the competitive spirit of the event is high. Inocencio stated, “The UAAP has always been one of the most competitive dance competitions in our community. The level of admirable talent increases every year as we all strive to be at our best.” Truly, the competitive spirit of the UAAP is not just present in the court, but also on the stage.
A talk with LSDC-Street
As the Animo Squad represents DLSU in the Cheerdance Competition, the University’s Streetdance counterparts would be the La Salle Dance Company-Street. LSDC-Street is an organization under the Culture and Arts Office, but it is the representative chosen by the Office of Sports Development, come the UAAP season. Since the competition’s beginning, LSDC-Street has solidified its place as one of the most accomplished dance groups as it has made its mark on both the local and international stage.
After experiencing the competition first hand, Gab Garcia explains that the feeling of competing in the Streetdance Competition is totally different from competing in something like UAAP football, basketball, or any other contact sport. Dancing, according to Garcia is not a fight against your competitors but a fight against yourself, since you are the only one who can perform the routine.
Garcia reveals that the feeling of competition is strong, but is also a very fulfilling one since the dance community is extremely tight-knit. The level of competition is high and is also a learning experience alongside people who have the same passion as you.
Training for the dance crew happens usually four to five times a week and lasts four hours per day. The time and effort that is put in the preparation for the competition is an important part of the process on the road to the title. The crew looks to refine their athletic and artistic abilities going in to this competition. The perfect dance routine requires brainstorming, conceptualization of the costume, and proper mixing of the music choreographed with the dance.
Garcia admits that it is a great feeling to perform in front of a huge Lasallian audience. The roar of the crowd gives the crew so much energy, ultimately giving them that boost needed to perfect the dance. Lastly, Garcia says the level of competition is extremely high on that stage, and the support of DLSU and its community is a huge factor in their good performance.