B'LAAN ARE MOSTLY FOUND IN DAVAO DEL SUR WITH CORE AREAS IN SAN MARCELINO, MALITA, JA SANTOS AND SARANGANI. THEY USED TO LIVE IN THE HILLS BUT LATER MOVED TO THE COASTAL AREAS. DRY CULTIVATION, FOOD GATHERING AND HUNTING REMAIN AS THE PRINCIPAL MEANS OF SUBSISTENCE. THEIR LANGUAGE IS CLASSIFIED IN A GROUP ALONG WITH TIRURAY AND TBOLI. A LOCA DATU HEADS EACH NEIGHBORHOOD OF THE B'LAAN WITH THE POSITION DEEMED AS HEREDITARY AND FOLLOWS THE FIRST BORN RULE.
Blit-B'laan is a courtship dance of the B'laan, imitating birds during mating season. The females scurry away, burying their heads under their wings, and the males enjoy the chase. The B'laan women wear elaborate blouses, necklaces, anklets, tiny bells, aromatic roots, and flowers. The men wear equally ornate jackets over tight-fitting trousers.
Photo: RJ Muna
Blit Blaan is an original dance by Bayanihan Philippine Dance Company