Lumad Basakanon dancer is Sinulog Festival Queen

Posted on January 14, 2012

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IT’S two in a row for Cebu City’s Lumad Basakanon of barangay Basak San Nicolas.

For possessing dancing skills and beauty that place her above her peers, their lead dancer Apriel Smith was crowned the Sinulog Festival Queen 2011 last night at the Cebu City Sports Center.

Last year, it was Steffi Rose Aberasturi of Lumad Basakanon who won the title.

Smith bested 13 other lead dancers of various Sinulog contingents who joined the competition.

Smith, a 16-year-old daughter of a tour guide, also won major awards: Best in Festival Costume and Best Solo Performer. Her designer Danny Booc won Best Costume Designer.

The festival queen competition, which started in 2004, is one of the highlights of the annual Sinulog festival.

The contest is a search for the lead dancer who possesses the most exceptional qualities, in physical beauty and dancing skills.

Contest rules require the candidate to be 14 to 24 years old and single. She must also participate in the Sinulog grand parade and the final performance at the Cebu City Sports Center.

Last night 14 contestants opened with Aberasturi, last year’s title holder, dancing “Let’s Groove Tonight.”

They were later rated in a group presentation and solo performance.

The contingent from Placer, Masbate province led by its Sinulog Queen, Juna Jean Hermosa, was the most applauded with her zoo theme.

Backup dancers were dressed as lions and tigers. Their props included three life-size crocodiles, a giraffe, zebra and gorilla.

Hermosa wore a costume adorned with 10 tiger heads on the skirt and a lion head on her back.

Judges in the competition included Power Dance choreographer Douglas Nieras, MISS Earth 2008 Karla Paula Henry and Peewee Senining.

Contestants were judged based on beauty and figure (25 percent), opening number performance (20 percent), group production (30 percent) and solo performance (25 percent).

Each contestant was required to perform solo and with the dancers of their contingents.

As 2012 Sinulog Festival Queen, Smith received P50,000 cash, gold earrings and a cell phone, among others.

The grandstand at the Cebu City Sports Center, with a seating capacity of 12,000, was filled with cheering spectators even the ground below the stage.

Four wide video screens mounted on the sides of the stage gave people a closer view of the performances. /Chief of Reporters Doris C. Bongcac
 

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