Tinikling is the national dance of the Philippines. It involves two bamboo poles that are hit on the ground or against each other to keep beat. Dancers dance in between the poles, and jump outside of them every time they are hit together, in order to not be caught in the bamboo. It is a fairly simple dance, but with some complicated movements. Missteps can lead to your feet being crushed.

Tinikling was named after a swift bird called the tikling. Rice farmers set up bamboo traps to catch these birds that would linger in their fields, but people later observed that the tinkling birds were quick and coordinated, and were able to dodge the bamboo traps in a graceful manner.

SFSU hosts a PCN, Pilipino Cultural Night, annually. It is a famous showcase of many traditional Philippine folk dances.
I danced Tinikling for last year’s show, the 39th anniversary of PCN, and received a standing ovation for our award-winning performance.
This was one of the most exhilarating moments of my college career, because I had never gotten such a response from a large crowd of people.
Not only did I feel accomplished, I made my relatives proud for representing my culture on stage.
Combining dance and culture, two things that define me, was an incredible feeling, and I invite you all to watch my performance, which I have included here.

– Jeanne Bautista –

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Reawaken

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I waste ammo cause I keep missing

No acid but I’m still trippin

Same places, same faces – seems different

Listen, I’ve been around the globe

Left the family that I hold in my soul

Now I’m cold.

Jumped into it; froze in place when the winter hit

Now I’m just tryna keep pace just a little bit

 

Thank God my raw team can shatter my lost dreams

Damming my thought streams like amateur crossbeams

We got flavor, got a style that could bruise haters

In a place of fakers and move makers

I’m healing and I mean it, I ain’t feeling defeated

Burn ashes ‘til Jeanne is

Reawakened like a phoenix.

 

Lyricism connects literature and music in a profoundly unique way because literature and music are two of the strongest forms of expression and art among humans. Combining them creates an artistic amalgamation of different art forms, each that I find beautiful. Lyrics are a form of poetry; they contain a quality of beauty and intensity of emotion, which is why it is one of my favorite art forms.

I define myself as a musician; I play many instruments and I produce beats electronically and acoustically. Music has reached out to me in profound ways because it elicits feelings and emotions that words alone cannot express. However, words are important when it comes to articulating specific thoughts. Lyrics have been my bridge between the two forms of expression, and are personally my favorite outlet for self-expression.

I am pictured above with my best friend Alaina, creating beats on our equipment. We regularly collaborate on music projects where we write lyrics and create instrumentals to express ourselves to one another. It is our personal form of bonding.

I wrote this short lyrical piece to express a specific aspect of my life. It goes along with a beat I produced earlier this week. I cannot attest to how well it conveys my story to others, but I am certain that it helps me express myself in an effective way.

 The majority of my family lives in the Philippines, which has always made me split between two different countries – there and here. It is both a blessing and a burden to have something so important to me exist so far away. I constantly struggle with my identity, because I often question where I belong. When I come back from my annual visits to the Philippines, I feel lost and alone, unsettled by the fact that I do not have just one true home. In due time, things take a drastic positive turn – as reflected in the second half of the lyrics – when I reflect on the friends and family that I do have here in America. It takes time, but as I adjust to being back in this country, I see past the negative, and realize the beauty that exists in my life here. It is my job to renew my state of mind and “reawaken” as a positively changed person with every experience I go through.

– Jeanne Bautista –