Tracks Studio and Surrounds, Darwin City, NT
August 6th 2022
Bayanihan - A Day of Cultural Dance and Hip Hop
"This project is called Bayanihan which means ‘the spirit of communal unity and cooperation.' This communal unity and cooperation will be made up as a cultural dance weekend. Building a bridge for the Filipinos who have migrated here and trying to adjust to a western society and the Filipinos who were born here (like myself), trying to connect to our Filipino culture." -Steph Spillett
Bayanihan was a free event filled with dance, food, and culture with 30 particpants.
"Tracks has had a long relationship with the Filipino community resulting in a Company Cultural visit to the Philippines in 2007, as a large number of Tracks’ youth participants and leaders had a Filipino background. The non-Filipino company members had the opportunity to learn about the culture and attend festivals to see the traditional arts and dancing.
Being Filipino myself and now a part of the Tracks team, I want to reignite that relationship and connection between the Filipino Community and Tracks. Bayanihan was a collaboration with Iselle Chua, who is a member of a local Youth Filipino Hip Hop dance crew PHLtheBeat and Emcille Wills, who is the president of the Filipino Australian Association (FAANT). They both have aspirations for creating a strong new relationship between the Filipino community and the rest of the Darwin community.
With the FAANT’s 25th anniversary coming up in August 2022 and being a highlight of the year, it will be the first time they will hold their annual Barrio Fiesta (Hala Bira) away from their home in Marrara and in the heart of Darwin, at the Darwin Waterfront. Bayanihan was the perfect way to re-engage the next generation of Filipino leaders and get them to step up for the community.
This project had three specific parts (culture, dance, and food) that represented togetherness. The result I was aiming for was to create new networks and re-connect to culture.
It was a day of dance workshops conducted by myself and other Filipino Dance artists, feasts and a movie night. Supported by Tracks and the Grey Panthers' Youth Development Fund. The day was inspiring and wholesome for the participants being introduced to Tracks as a company and seeing the older generation of Filipino dancers all over different Tracks posters. This project provided a new culturally safe space for the community to practice creativity and knowledge.
In this project I wanted to activate the young people in my Filipino community, to make them feel more connected. I was interested in making a way for our youth to know that if they get lost in this world, they can always find a way back through culture. I also know that we have a lot of fun when we dance together and no one can turn down free food.
I would also like to give my sincere thanks to The Grey Panthers who funded this project through their Youth Development Fund - our elders giving back to the youth. All donations gratefully accepted." Spillett.
Direction and Concept: Steph Spillett
Cultural Dance: Emcille Wills
Hip Hop dance: Steph Spillett, Iselle Chua, Arthur Lariosa
Food: Ana Spillett
Documentation: Duane Preston
Abigail Grace Tidalgo, Ace Lothian, Alissa Franchezka Collins, Aliyah Acub, Andres Ramilo, Angelina Karlsen, Annabeth Spillett, Blessvi Calderon, Cathryn Sarmiento, Cheenee Rosales, Ciabel Sarmiento, Dawnie Tagala, Donna Ceba, Erika Lu, Gail De Jesus, Jayda Jamisola, Joem Narciso, John Patrick Jasminez, Jurse Salandanan, Keannu Galleno, Keszia Fernandez, Liam Lu, Lyndon Tumala, Mark John Jorta, Mary Claire Papel, Mary Claire Papel, Micaella Joy Mandingiado, Raphael Abag, Renz Joseph Chavez, Taylah McElroy
'Thank you to all who organised this activity. Filipino community is the largest cultural group in Darwin / NT. This kind of cultural activity should be a part of the cultural activities for the entire multicultural community of Darwin. Congratulations and kudos to all.' Januario John Rivas
Artistic Co-Directors: David McMicken and Tim Newth (Tim is currently on long service leave)
Company Director: Adelaide Wood
Assoc. Artistic Director: Jessica Devereux
Dance Animateur: Kelly Beneforti and Steph Spillett
Production Manager: Duane Preston
Administrator: Mikaela Earnshaw and Debbie Micairan
Bookkeeper: It Figures
David Taylor (Chairperson), Max Dewa Stretton (Vice-Chairperson), Glenn Bernardin (Treasurer), Venaska Cheliah, Andrea Wicking, Rachael Wallis, Michael Grant, Ken Conway. David McMicken, Tim Newth, and Adelaide Wood (Ex-Officio Members)
Public Fund Trustees
Maari Gray, Will Crawford, and Lachlan Peattie
Her Honour the Honourable Vicki O’Halloran AM, Administrator of the Northern Territory
Tracks Inc is proudly sponsored by the Northern Territory Government
The Grey Panthers Youth Development Fund