PENAMPANG: The packed venue at the Sabah Cultural Centre near here was treated to a magnificent and colourful performances of 16 dance ensembles performed by dancers from many parts of the world during the final night of the 10th Sabah International Folklore Festival on Saturday.
They entertained and wowed the audiences with a variety of performances that highlighted the unique diversity of the world’s culture in the celebration of wedding occasions of the respective countries where they came from.
Their costumes were so distinct from one another that the audiences were awe-struck and enthralled by the beauty of it all.
The performers were from the Badan Kebudayaan Pesaka of Brunei Darussalam, Velreiz Dance Group of Latvia, the Indonesian Svadara Dance Group, Abyichaana Dance Ensemble from the Republic of Sahka Yakutia, China’s Quan Zhou Gao Jia Opera Heritage Centre, South Korean’s Gwacheon People Artist Federation, Kazakhstan’s On AltyKyz Folk Dance Troupe, Sining Palawan Dance Troupe of Palawan State University, Bngsagar Performing Arts group from India, Kyrgyzstan’s KauharSanat, Slovakia’s “MLADOST” University Folklore Ensemble, Hui Fong Dance Group from Taiwan, Hoytad of Turkey, University of Guadalaraja of Mexico, Russia, and performers from the National Department of Culture and Arts Sarawak.
Sabah Head of State Tun Juhar Mahiruddin and his wife graced the event together with Tourism, Culture and Environment Minister Datuk Masidi Manjun, Assistant Tourism, Culture and Environment Minister Datuk Kamarlin Ombi and Community Development and Consumer Affairs Minister Datuk Jainab Ahmad Ayid.
The Overall Champion Prime Award was won by Russia, followed by the Philippines which was awarded the Chief Minister’s Award. The Cultural Minister Award went to Slovakia with their dance depicting the wedding tradition of folks residing at the country which was very merry and lively.
The Indonesian ensemble was awarded with the most online presence, while the Most Popular Group award went to Mexico. The Best Musical Arrangement award went to India, the Best Choreography award to Russia, the Best Performance went to Latvia and the Jury award was won by the Republic of Sakha Yakutia. The Sabah Cultural Board Award was won by Turkey.
Also recognised at the event were Lukas Vargic of Slovakia who won the Best Promising Male Dancer award and the Best Promising Female Dancer award went to Kazakhstan dancer, Allia. The Best Male Dancer and Best Female Dancer award were both won by Russians, Samoylov Denis and Borovnik Ekaterina, respectively.
For the Local Folk Dance competition participated by students from primary schools and secondary schools throughout the country, the Diamond of Tugu Budaya for the Primary School category was won by SK St Agnes while the Diamond of Tugu Budaya for Secondary School category went to SM All Saints.
The primary school category winner brought home RM9,000 cash prize and the Tugu Budaya trophy while SM All Saints won RM10,000 cash prize and the Tugu Budaya trophy.