IN PHOTOS: Baguio City ushers Halloween with 'Karkarna Ti Rabii'
BAGUIO CITY – Folk tales are not just told in the City of Pines: it comes to life, too.
Thousands gathered at dusk in Session Road, Baguio City on Friday, October 27, for the Karkarna Ti Rabii, the annual Halloween torch parade organized by the University of Baguio (UB). Now on its second year, Karkarna Ti Rabii is translated as “mystical/ strange creatures of the night.”
The parade started at the Cardinal’s Gym in UB, emerging in Session Road where locals and visitors saw UB students bring to life creatures from popular Philippine folk tales and legends.
Among the featured creatures are the duwende by grade school students, tiktik and balbal for the junior high school students, and tikbalang and kapre by the seniors.
The different colleges showcased the tahamiling, red-complexioned maternal keepers of the forest; the manananggal, a man-eating, blood-sucking, vampire-like figure; the minokawa, a giant, dragon-like bird; and the bungisngis, the giant cyclops, among others. The costumes were made with recycled materials, such as cartons, juice containers, and water bottles.
During the street parade, the participants also danced to Taylor Swift’s recent hit single "Look What You Made Me Do" at designated stops along the route.
The first of its kind in Philippine festivals, Karkarna Ti Rabii, despite its macabre and “dark” elements, aims to inspire awareness and appreciation of the country's oral traditions, giving emphasis to the folk tales and myths from various provinces.
Awards were given out to the most creative teams after the parade. The School of Teacher Education brought home the Karkarna Ti Rabii, Top Choreography, and Go Green Costume awards for their depiction of the bungisngis.
Meanwhile the UB Senior High School department got the Fun Halloween and Taguob ti Sardam (audience impact) awards for their embodiment of the kapre. They were eventually declared champion of this year’s event.
The Karkarna Ti Rabii is celebrated every last Friday of October. – Rappler.com
Ivan Jim Layugan is a writer based in Baguio City. He teaches literature and public speaking at the University of Baguio