DBNA: Bidayuh Langgi Dance competition returns after two years, prelude to coming Gawai festivities

Dr Sinang (middle) shows off his drumming skills as he performed the opening gimmick for the competition while Ik Pahon (second left) and others look on.

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KUCHING, May 28: The rain here last night did not stop some 1,000 people from visiting the Community Park here to watch the Bidayuh Langgi Dance (Authentic and Creative) competition.

According to Dayak Bidayuh National Association (DBNA) in a statement today, it was the first dance competition here since the end of the two-year pandemic as spectators enjoyed the rhythmic sounds of traditional gong and drums.

There were nine troupes participating, comprising Bidayuh and non-Bidayuh members who presented their versions of the Langgi dance.

The competition was part of the week-long 2022 Serian Gawai Bazaar at the Community Park.

Tebedu assemblyman Dr Simon Sinang Bada who officiated at the event said it is important to preserve traditional dances as these formed the cultural identity of a community.

He also said the competition, organised by the N21 Tebedu service centre, aimed to raise the Gawai celebratory mood after the pandemic and two years of lockdowns.

“Gawai is the time to celebrate. Gawai is the time for us to rejoice. In the old days, our forefathers celebrated Gawai because they were happy with the bountiful harvest.

“In the modern era, we celebrate it for different reasons. Nowadays, we celebrate and rejoice for reasons such as job promotions, some due to business, and some to be grateful for a good year,” he said.

Rozzie Mila (second left) and Harry Acid Rain on stage (right) performing a duet during the event.

Meanwhile, DBNA president Datu Ik Pahon Joyik who spoke earlier said traditional dances should be displayed and demonstrated for the younger generations to learn and appreciate.

“Every dance move and step has their own meaning. We at DBNA encourage the organising of activities such as this, as this gives awareness to the younger generations on the importance to preserve our cultural identity,” he said.

He also expressed his appreciation to Dr Simon and other elected representatives here for allocating funds to realise the Serian Gawai Bazaar which marked its return after a two-year hiatus.

Members of the winning troupe from ABT Dancers Kampung Tangga receive their prizes from Dr Sinang (second left).

ABT Dancers troupe from Kampung Tangga were adjudged as champions during the competition, followed by the SMK Tebakang troupe coming in second and Girumpung Batan Asal Labak Situngkang from Kampung Janan placing third.

Apart from the traditional dances, the crowd was also entertained by two local recording artists, namely Harry Acid Rain and Rozzie Mila. — DayakDaily