The National Commission for Culture and the Arts (NCCA), the prime government agency for arts and culture headed by its chairman Felipe M. De Leon Jr. and OIC-executive director Adelina M. Suemith, is now gearing up for Dayaw 2015: The Indigenous Peoples Festival, touted to be the biggest gathering of Philippine indigenous peoples (IPs).


Organized by NCCA’s Subcommission on Cultural Communities and Traditional Arts (SCCTA), Dayaw is annually held in celebration of National Indigenous Peoples’ Month observed every October. Dayaw showcases the different indigenous groups of the country, and an enriching and interesting array of activities including performances, rituals, forums, traditional cuisine demos, traditional games, arts and crafts exhibit and cultural exchanges among others. Dayaw aims to highlight the importance and richness of indigenous cultures, to discuss issues indigenous peoples face today and facilitate interactions with other indigenous peoples. It also aims to mine traditional knowledge as well as draw inspiration and insight from indigenous ways of life to find solutions for modern problems.

With this year’s theme “Katutubong Kaalaman para sa Kalikasan at Kapayapaan” (Indigenous knowledge for environment and peace), Dayaw 2015 will be held from October 15 to 17, 2015, in Angeles City and San Fernando, Pampanga, focusing on traditional and local knowledge on environment protection and advocacy for peace while sharing the uniqueness of each cultural community in the Philippines.

On October 15, the Dayaw opening ceremonies will be held at the Bayanihan Park, where the IPs representatives will gather in their traditional wears for a spectacular parade. They will be joined by Pampanga’s government officials as well as students, drumming up awareness on the different IP groups of the country and their rich heritage.

dayaw 2015 day 1 schedule of activities

An exhibit of traditional clothing and Manlilikha ng Bayan crafts will be opened at SM City Clark accompanied by pocket workshops. IP delegates will also conduct traditional games demonstrations at the mall’s Event Center. Capping the opening day is a public performance at the Plaza Anghel of Angeles City, and everyone is encouraged to watch.

 The following days will be full of activities such as an IP summit in San Fernando where about 100 IP delegates will discuss various concerns including IP rights, environmental issues, and promotion of peace and unity.

dayaw day 2 schedule of activities

The IP delegates will also conduct outreach performances in schools, including the Holy Angel University, City College of Angeles, City College of Mabalacat, Angeles University Foundation and Systems Plus College Foundation. They will showcase their traditional dances, songs/chants, games and cuisines. Then they will go to different places in Pampanga for cultural exchanges and performances with the local communities in Lubao, Santa Rita, Macabebe, Arayat, Porac and San Fernando.

The NCCA will also showcase the winning entries of its Tri-Regional Weaving Design Competition, ready-to-wear clothes and school uniforms inspired by traditional textiles and patterns, during a dinner hosted by the provincial government on October 16 in San Fernando.

dayaw day 3 schedule of activities

Closing the festival is a ceremony and the recognition of cultural masters, particularly the masters for the NCCA’s Schools of Living Traditions, at the Plaza Anghel.

Since the signing of Presidential Proclamation 1906, declaring October as National Indigenous Peoples’ Month, the NCCA has been annually celebrating the occasion in different parts of the country through Dayaw. In 2007, Kalimudan: Panaghi-usa sa Mindanao (Mindanao Indigenous Peoples’ Gathering) was held in Davao City in November, featuring Mindanao’s ethnic groups. The following year, Timpuyog: Indigenous Peoples’ Month Celebration in Luzon was held in Santiago City, Isabela, focusing on Luzon ethnic groups and featuring performances, arts and crafts workshops, cultural awareness lectures, forums, tours, and a theme-park exhibition featuring the traditional houses, cultural resources, practices/rituals, chants, music, songs and dances, stories, traditional arts and crafts, and indigenous games.

In 2009, the Indigenous Peoples’ Festival was held in the Visayas, particularly in Roxas City, Capiz, called Dungog, with similar activities and aims. Dayaw 2010 was held in Metro Manila, and in 2011, it was held in Tagum City, Davao del Norte. In 2012, Dayaw graced the province of Bulacan. In 2013, Dayaw was slated to be held in Tacloban City but super typhoon Yolanda hit the region. It was reprogrammed into psychosocial and arts for healing activities in Leyte, Bohol, Aklan and Cebu.

Last year, Dayaw was held in the three island clusters—Baguio City in Luzon; Bacolod City in the Visayas; Zamboanga City in Mindanao.

For the 2015 Dayaw in Pampanga, NCCA teams up with SM Malls and the provincial government of Pampanga headed by Governor Lilia Pineda.

The SCCTA is composed of the National Committee on Southern Cultural Communities headed by Dr. Al-Anwar Anzar, National Committee on Northern Cultural Communities headed by Dr. Edwin V. Antonio, the National Committee on Central Cultural Communities headed by Alphonsus Tesoro, with Marichu Tellano as Chief of the Plan/Policy Formulation, and Programming Division and Renee Talavera as SCCTA section head.

For more information on this press release, please contact Mr. Rene Napeñas, head of the Public Affairs and Information Office, through 0928-5081057, 527-2192 loc 208 or through email address