TBOLI OR TABOLI ARE THE PEACE LOVING PEOPLE OF MINDANAO IN SOUTHERN PHILIPPINES. TBOLI ARE FOUND IN THREE MUNICIPALITIES: MUHIN IN KIAMBA AND MAITUM AND MAASIM IN SARANGANI PROVINCE.
Madal is a Tboli word for dance. Madal Blelah portrays a mythical bird, which according to tradition, consolidates in itself the feather coloration of all known birds.
In farming or traveling, the S’loong Knebang, wide-brimmed hat, veiled-over with an appliquéd red cloth, is worn to protect against the glare of the sun.
A polygamous male picks his next wife amongst sisters vying for his attention.
Translated as a traditional dance this is dance drama centering on a bird with a broken leg coached by the rest of the flock in an effort to try her wings and fly again, in the end the flock of Blelah birds fly again.
In Tboli means “never ending joy” and also named as their yearly festival held every November to celebrate their rich culture and traditions.
Inspired dances from Bayanihan Philippine Dance Company and Ramon Obusan Folkloric Group
Note: The word “Tagabili” is not a proper term to refer to the Tboli people. This is a term used by the settlers when Tboli community purchased from them.
Illustration by: Don Aguillo | Photo: This Is It Photography | Feature Image: Kimberly Requesto
Culture bearers: Boi Rosie Sula, Datu Allen Sula, Lyn Buti Lambago, Silid Awed