Dayang Dayang


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Now let us learn culture. 

Long before the Gangnam Style, the Philippines had a “Dayang Dayang”.

A variant of the dance called Pakiring is popular among the people of Mindanao, Sulu and Sabah. The dance emphasizes the movement of the hips.

Dayang Dayang is not Malay in origin as many knew, but Filipino. Therefore, the Filipino meaning of the word “Dayang Dayang” should be followed. Dayang Dayang means “Princess of the first Degree” in Filipino. Although the founder of the Sultanate is allegedly an Arab Malay (this has yet to be proven due to lack of documentary evidences; there are two versions of the founding of the Sulu Sultanate), the Sultans of Sulu from the 16th down to the 20th century are all Filipinos not Malays.

The original version of “Dayang Dayang” Pakiring song-dance of the Filipino Muslims of Mindanao, Sulu Archipelago and Sabah is originally based on the traditional song called Kiriring Pakiriring and often accompanied with the dance. The song was later popularized when it was re-recorded by an unknown artist under the title, Dayang Dayang, however some of the lyrics have been changed and is considered by many to be largely gibberish since the altered words had no meaning behind them and were not related to any dialect or language. The meaning of its name is believed to be referring to Hadji Dayang Dayang Piandao, the first lady of Sulu, since the word dalay-dalay was a title given only to the daughters of the Sultan. In the 90’s, the version is widely known across the Philippines rather than the original but its origin and the artist who recorded it remains a mystery. It also had many versions in different languages in the different regions in the Philippines.


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