What some critics say about FFATI performances:
“…first class production all the way! Lavish costumes, heart-stopping martial arts scenes, a balance of sweet and exciting choreographies, wonderful singing, nostalgic classical and traditional Filipino music, world-class excellence in vocal and choral numbers, unusual ethnic musical instruments…all well-researched for authenticity, all coming together to portray the history, romance and drama of the Filipino people, in a most wonderful performance to be remembered and cherished forever. No other Philippine group in the world has the expertise and originality to put together and do it like this group does. Artistic Director Zonia Elvas Velasco has greatly distinguished and evolved the world of Philippine performing arts, carrying it up levels where no one has gone before!” – Pat Badillo
Comments from the Audience – 1997 Season Performances
“The rural dances and songs reflected the simple but always happy nature of the Filipino people. The show was well rounded and provided the background and history that so many times is lacking for non-Filipinos… I also liked the dances from Mindanao. The girl dancing on top of the two bamboos carried on the men’s shoulders kept me on the edge of my seat. The grace and steadfastness she was able to maintain was incredible.” –Gina Burgess (choreographer, Jr. Maharlika Dancers)
“The singing of the anthems gave me goosebumps… and made me look forward to my trip to the Philippines.” – Cindy Willis (schoolteacher volunteer to the Philippines from Carrolton ISD)
“My wife liked the rural dances because they reflect the joy and gaiety of the people. The tinikling has always been my favorite. I liked the wedding scene (Los Bailes Españoles) as it made us remember when we are asked to be sponsors in a Philippine style wedding with veil, cord and coin ceremonies. It also gave historical information which we thought was very informative and valuable.
The bright colorful costumes and graceful beauty reflect the culture so wonderfully. I also liked the hands-on idea as it made people more aware of what it is like to participate in another culture through its musical instruments.
We also enjoyed the Mindanao Percussions section. When the girl started to climb up on top of the bamboo borne on two men’s shoulders, we knew she was good, but we still held our breaths away. That whole portion was outstanding!” – David Knutson, CPA in Dallas
“It was a thrill attending today’s performance at the International Museum of Culture. Beautiful music, dancing and presentation…(which were) entertaining and educational. In fact your performance rates in my ” top three for the Dallas area (the other two being the 1994 Dallas Morning News Dance Festival and Fort Worth’s first First Night)!” – Al Richardson, Euless, Texas
“You have, through this performance, shown that you are the leading Filipino folk arts performing group in the whole of Texas that I know of. You cover it all – from solo to choral singing to live kulintang orchestra and other bamboo instruments, to drama, authentic costumes, props to beautiful dancing. Excellent choices of numbers, talented and skilled performers, beautiful costumes, unmatched delivery and staging….Congratulations!” – Merna Parcon, Executive Director, Maharlika Dancers, USA