Saturday, October 25, 2008
The Ibalong Festival is a week long series of festivities celebrated from October 25 to 31 every year. The festival’s name is derived from one of the province’s foremost epic, the ‘Ibalong’ which detailed the myths and legends of the region long before the colonizers came. Apart from commemorating a cultural landmark, the Ibalong Festival is also a celebration of the province’s people and their resiliency, given the string calamities that regularly befall the region given its typhoon-proned geographical location.
Like most fiestas in the country, the main event of Ibalong Festival is its choreographed dances performed in the streets of Legazpi City. Such performances depict the numerous myths and legends contained in the Ibalong epic of the province and are done with the majestic visage of the Mayon Volcano, with its perfect cone, as their backdrop. The street dances are commonly performed by students from high schools throughout Albay and some times even from those outside of the province are invited to participate in the street dance which also doubles as a contest.
Being a week-long celebration, Ibalong Festival also features other merry-making actitvities aside from street dances. Other attractions include street parties, band concerts in the evening, flea markets in the streets of the city, drag races, and fireworks display. With the uniqueness of Bicolano cuisine, food fests and cooking demos are also one of the main features of the festival.
source: Legazpi festivals