The famed Sinanduloy Cultural Troupe of Tangub City will be taking a break from joining the Sinulog grand parade starting next year, 2018.
Tangub City Mayor Philip Tan broke the news in a speech he gave during the opening of their exhibit at the SM Seaside City Cebu on Wednesday afternoon.
“We have been participating in the Sinulog for almost 20 years. You better watch closely. This will be our last participation in the Sinulog. Next year, we will come back in Cebu in another way. We will offer dances to the Basilica and go around. But not in the streets,” Tan said.
Shortly after the opening of the exhibit, which showcases costumes of the Sinanduloy Cultural Troupe dancers for the past years, the mayor explained that they might still make a comeback maybe five years after.
But there was hardly any trace of regret or sadness in the mayor’s face as he made the announcement.
Tan explained that while they will be taking a hiatus from the Sinulog grand parade, they will continue to do Sinulog-related events in Cebu in an “upgraded” way.
“Our coming here in Cebu is a pilgrimage. We will stop for a while because we want to upgrade ourselves. We will come back here. But instead of parading, we will be more in the malls, doing shows, looking for hotels,” he said.
Tan also raised concern on crowd control issues hounding the Sinulog grand parade in the past years which has affected their pilgrimage and dances to Sr. Sto. Niño, he said.
Being their last performance, Tan said their presentation this Sunday will be a special treat to spectators.
Without delving into details, he said their concept will revolve on Filipinos’ genuine intent and desire to attend and celebrate fiestas like that of the Fiesta Senyor.
Sinulog Foundation Inc. (SFI) executive director Ricky Ballesteros said he is saddened by Tangub City’s decision.
“Sayang kaayo kung wala sala. I hope it is not yet final because they are already part of the Sinulog. They have been joining even before I became executive director in 2002. People look forward to them every year,” he said.
Ballesteros said the Sinanduloy Cultural Troupe has also made its mark in the history of the Sinulog Festival, being the contingent with the most number of championships under their belt.
Since they first started joining in 1994, the group has amassed 11 championships.
They first won the championship under the free interpretation category in 2000 and 2001.
After this, they continued racking up championships in the Sinulog-based category in the years 2002, 2003, 2005, 2006, 2007, 2009, 2010, 2011 and 2013.
Since 2000, in the years they joined wherein they did not bag the grand prize, the group always placed second. But last year, in 2016, they only placed third.
This is why they are expected to come in hungry this year in a bid to bring back the crown to Tangub City.
They have also won multiple awards for best in musicality, best in costume and best in street dancing throughout the years.
The Sinanduloy Cultural Troupe first joined in 1994 and in 1996.
They came back in 2000 and since then, they haven’t missed a single Sinulog grand parade until this year, which will be their 20th year of joining.