Asian/Filipino dance crews going mainstream

OK, so yeah. I have been watching America’s Best Dance Crew. I blame Trinity for this. But as I’ve watched it, I detect roots to Friendship Games (and sadly, somehow the best FAQ on the Friendship Games is on Sonoma State’s Filipino club site), which originated at my alma mater and defies all reason for how successful it is. Seriously. Anyway, one of the hallmarks of Friendship Games (the event at Cal State Fullerton) is the roll call — a dance or skit presentation by each school to represent, show spirit, be goofy, show off dance skills, whatever. My first time, I was amazed at the roll call — not only were the dance routines surprisingly skillful, they were super long. I couldn’t find one video from a Friendship Games dance routine under five minutes. No wonder roll call always takes forever.

Anyhoo, I am already calling the show — it’ll end up in a showdown between Kaba Modern and JabbaWockeez. I won’t lie, I feel an affinity with these two groups — most of Kaba Modern’s members hail from my old stomping grounds, plus there are a couple of Filipino guys on the JabbaWockeez. But I also am betting that the Kaba Modern and JabbaWockeez at least partly started up thanks to events like Friendship Games or F/Pilipino Cultural Nights. I’m guessing that Kaba Modern is a spin off of UCI Kababayan, the school’s Filipino club. And at least one member of JabbaWockeez is an alum of Kaba Modern.

Kaba Modern’s routine starts at about a minute, thirty, if you want to get past all the talking, practicing and more talking.

Here’s JabbaWockeez episode 2 performance. If you can, start watching about a minute in, when the routine starts.

These videos I picked up as a bonus — dance performances from Friendship Games past. I remember quite a few dance groups that emerged, like PAC Modern and Team Millenia. I guess Kaba Modern just went the farthest.

One thought on “Asian/Filipino dance crews going mainstream

  1. Moonie

    Hi Darleene,

    Just kinda bugs that Kaba Modern was built on the efforts of Filipino American students at UCI for years and years then finally when it’s time to shine on a national stage, none of the members representing Kaba Modern are Filipino.

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