Pinoy dance troupe gets warm welcome in Austria

By Hector Pascua, ABS-CBN Europe News Bureau

Posted at Sep 12 2013 12:44 PM | Updated as of Sep 12 2013 08:44 PM

VIENNA – London-based Lahing Kayumanggi Dance Company brought an evening of dance and music to Filipinos in Austria.

The group's performance at the main hall of the Welt Museum in Vienna's 1st District last September 5, demonstrated the rich and diverse culture of the Philippines.

'We are very much glad to share with our kababayans, friends and supporters here in Austria one of the national treasures of the Philippines—the richness of our culture," said the group's director, Ronnie del Barrio.

Del Barrio also expressed his gratitude for the warm support given to them by the audience.

"It is great opportunity for us to show the Filipino culture here in Vienna and hopefully the Austrians loved it," del Barrio said.

In her opening remarks at the event, Ambassador Lourdes Yparraguirre acknowledged the great contribution of the group in the promotion of Philippine culture.

"Tonight’s performance of the Lahing Kayumanggi Dance Company is a display of the rich and diverse Filipino culture. We hope that through the universal language of dance, music and arts, we can build formidable bridges of friendship and understanding between the Philippines, Austria and other countries,"Yparraguirre said.

Welt Museum Director Steven Engelsman considered the cultural event as a tremendous success, saying the Lahing Kayumanggi was able to help raise more awareness about the Philippines in Austria.

Ben Repol, president of Kapunungan sa mga Bisaya sa Austria, is delighted to reacquaint Filipino and Austrian audiences with a compelling display of dance and rhythms drawn from the rich and varied cultural traditions of the Philippines.

Elisabeth Sarup, an Austrian guest, described the performance as spectacular as it offered non-Filipinos insights into Philippine culture and history.

"It is really fantastic. I love the range of costumes which were visually stunning and the choreography and emotions behind the dances were riveting," Sarup said.

Founded in 1994, the multi-awarded dance company has performed in several countries in Europe with its brightly colored costumes and breathtaking physical feats.

Lahing Kayumanggi Dance Company had been awarded the Presidential Banaag Award in recognition of its unwavering dedication to artistic excellence, raising the cultural awareness and ethnic pride of the Filipino community in the United Kingdom, and supporting cultural and humanitarian activities in the Philippines. The cultural group likewise received the ABS-CBN Gawad Geny Lopez Jr. Bayaning Pilipino Awards Europe.