ANG SAYAW NG DALAWANG KALIWANG PAA (THE DANCE OF TWO LEFT FEET)
BY ALVIN B. YAPAN AND ALEMBERG ANG
Ang Sayaw ng Dalawang Kaliwang Paaexplores the intersection and divergence between feminist and gay concerns in the third world context, as it features the poetry of Merlinda Bobis, Ruth Elynia Mabanglo, Joi Barrios, Rebecca Anonuevo, Benilda Santos and Ophelia Dimalanta. When Marlon, a college student, stalks Karen, his literature professor, he finds out that she moonlights as a choreographer and dance teacher in a dance studio. Frustrated over his performance in her literature class, he plans to impress her instead by learning to poeticize his body movements and enroll in her dance class. He hires his classmate to teach him the basics of dancing. As Dennis, his tutor, teaches him how his body should move, Marlon begins to understand the intersections between the art of poetry and dance. This opens up his world to new insights about the life of Karen as s single woman who chose to live the life of an artist in a third world setting. Marlon begins to understand how the poems being discussed by Karen in class are testaments to her choice to stand by her art. Karen eventually finds out, through Dennis, that Marlon only enrolled in her class to be near her. She confronts Marlon about this and wishes that his interest for dance would survive his infatuation for her. Marlon feels betrayed over Dennis telling Karen. But it is also this sense of betrayal that tells him that he has already become close to Dennis, whom he now considers a friend. Up until then, Marlon and Dennis have become inseparable as they both tackled the complexities of poetry and dance. Sensing the coldness between the two, Karen set them up to help her train a group of dancers for a cotillion dance. Eventually, Karen trains both Marlon and Dennis to star in her dance adaptation of the epic Humadapnon, when she bags a grant. Marlon will play the lead role of Humadapnon, who becomes trapped in a cave full of women. Dennis’ character now has to rescue Marlon from the women, as he plays the role of Sunmasakay, the male incarnation of the goddess Nagmalitong Yawa. On the eve of their performance, in a drunken conversation, Marlon confronts Karen how he could not understand her poetry. Karen, in response, assures Marlon that he does understand her poetry. His mind is just unwilling to, unlike his body which already understands. Karen invites Marlon to dance with her, but in the middle of her dance, she passes him onto Dennis. Their drunken dance culminates with Marlon and Dennis taking on the roles of Humadapnon and Sunmasakay on stage.
Dr.Alvin Yapan, Ph.D. currently chairs the Filpino Department of the School of Humanities at the Ateneo de Manila University. An award winning fictionist, he has under his name some of the Philippines’ top prizes in literature: four Palanca Awards for Excellence in Literature, a National Commission for Culture and the Arts Writers Prize and the National Book Award to name a few. After mastering the art of storytelling on paper, he delved into the medium of film with his first short film, Rolyo, which won the best short film in the 2007 Cinemalaya Philippine Independent Film Festival and the 2008 Gawad Urian Awards. The film eventually competed as the Philippine entry to the Paris Film Festival 2008. His first full length feature film Ang Panggagahasa kay Fe (The Rapture of Fe) took home the Golden Prize Award for Best Digital Feature Film at the 33rd Cairo International Film Festival and the Special Jury Prize at the 2009 Cinemalaya Philippine Independent Film Festival. It has also been awarded the Ani ng Dangal award by the President of the Philippines and was nominated for five Gawad Urian Awards among other nominations and awards from various organizations. Ang Sayaw ng Dalawang Kaliwang Paa is his second Cinemalaya movie.
Alemberg Ang, after teaching for more than 10 years, decided to leave his vocation to work in the arts. Without any professional background in filmmaking, he produced his friend’s first full length feature, Ang Panggagahasa kay Fe (The Rapture of Fe), which won for the producer-director tandem the grand prize at the digital category in the 33rd Cairo International Film Festival and the Special Jury Prize at the 5th Cinemalaya Philippine Independent Film Festival. The film was exhibited and competed at the Chicago International Film Festival, Bahamas International Film Festival, Toronto’s ReelWorld Film Festival and the Osian’s Cinefan Festival for Arab and Asian Cinema. It also bagged several citations and nominations from various local film groups including the prestigious Gawad Urian. After working on Fe, Ang eventually worked in other Cinemalaya movies including Dennis Marasigan’s Vox Populi.
Major Credits: Cast:
Paulo Avelino, Rocco Nacino and Ms. Jean Garcia Featuring the FEU Dance Company with the special participation of Company of Dance Artists (CODA)
Writer and Director-Alvin B. Yapan, Executive Producers-Alemberg Ang and Alvin Yapan, Producer-Tonee Acejo, Editor-Mai Dionisio, Production Designer-Aped Santos, PDGP, Director of Photography—Arvin Viola, Music-Christine Muco and Jema Pamintuan, Choreography-Eli Jacinto