June 14, 2024

PRIDE OF BAGUIO — Home-grown talents Baguio JKrayonz won second place in the UDO Asia Pacific Street Dance Competition in Chonburi, Thailand on April 5 to 7. The group, representing the Philippines, has qualified to join the World Championships in the United Kingdom this August and are appealing for financial help to get them to the championships. — United Dance Organization photo

Baguio City’s own JKrayonz Team Pilipinas won a silver medal for the United Dance Organisation (UDO) Asia Pacific Street Dance Competition in Chonburi, Thailand which was a series of dance-offs with other talented international dancers from April 4 to 7.
The 15-person team, who are all under 18 and from various schools in the city, was ecstatic for the win, all the more because the top three winners will advance to the UDO World Championship on Aug. 14 to 18.
But they are faced with a tough challenge ahead, as the event is set in Blackpool, United Kingdom, which means a huge funding is needed.
While the group was planning for a series of fund-raising events, an unfortunate tragedy struck on April 13. The houses of two of the members of the team were included in the fire Queen of Peace that were completely burned down.
Wreigh Jann Tamayo, one of the coaches of the team, said they are currently assisting the two members in need, with co-parents of the team opening their homes.
Tamayo said a donation drive was mounted for their members as they recover from the tragedy.
He said once the members are settled, they will proceed with their plan for the fund drive for the team to get to the world championship.
“We’re planning to have a dance concert and I will auction my paintings for them to have funds,” he said.
Aside from being a dance coach, Tamayo, who is the younger brother of Midland Courier cartoonist Jogin Rey Tamayo, is also a talented visual artist.
When asked how much funding it would take for the group, Tamayo said one UK visa per person would take P17,995.
He said the group has huge potential skill-wise to get to the top spot after being ahead of the former first-runner up in the world competition. Also, they have a hairline difference in points from the under 18 champion, G-Dat Team from Thailand.
Prior to the event, the team would spend their time after class and on weekends in a rigorous training at the Art Bank in Athletic Bowl.
The Baguio JKrayonz is a decade in the making, with their debut in the national stage back in 2018 at the Pilipinas Got Talent.
The lineup has changed with a new breed of young dancers, some of whom were national champions in streetdance coming from Baguio City National High School, Baguio City Science High, University of Baguio prep high, Baguio Central School, and Manuel Roxas Elementary School.
The team is composed of Annedrew Cruz, Xhianti Sino Cruz, Xerge Daet, Russel Ateteo, Zhoey Fernandez, Jhon Paul Payaoal, Niel Jeremiah Ket-eng, Miel Angela Castulo, Caster Pacya, Keira Madison Kiangan, Maria Jillian Calub, Angel Delizo, Tommy Veloso, Gleiannah Lazarte, and Hazel Ann Estacio.
Other coaches include Andrew Cruz, Louie and Romar Calimlim.
To extend help for the group, contact Wreigh Jann Tamayo at 0950-866-1851. – Ofelia C. Empian