‘Not complete without us’: UAAP drummers pen plea to join cheerdance competition

May 19, 2022 - 6:45 PM
Cheering squad drummers have been a staple in student athletics in the Philippines. A new rule by the UAAP seeks to limit their presence this coming varsity season. (Artwork by Uela Altar-Badayos)

The University Athletic Association of the Philippines (UAAP) members appealed to the Board to allow them to perform in the coming Cheerdance competition.

University drummers made this appeal in a joint statement from the member schools on Thursday, May 19.

“We, the UAAP drummers are grateful that the UAAP has allowed us to participate in the UAAP Season 84 events such as the men’s basketball tournament and the ongoing women’s volleyball tournament. However, we believe it would only be right for us to also have a place during the iconic UAAP Cheerdance Competition,” they said.

“We humbly ask that the UAAP consider this request and allow us to bring our drums and to be part of the prestigious CDC,” they added.

The CDC is one of the most anticipated events in every UAAP season.

The UAAP Season 84 CDC is slated May 22 at the Mall of Asia Arena. It will return after a two-year hiatus.

Some reports, however, said that live drums will not be allowed at the arena even if audiences are already permitted inside.

Routines are also reportedly shortened from the previous seasons’ six minutes to only three for this year.

Due to these changes, UAAP drummers pointed out the importance of drums in hyping up the crowd in their appeal to allow them to perform.

“Drums bring life and excitement to the crowd and encourage every UAAP fan to cheer proudly for their school. This CDC will not only bring the UAAP schools together but also rekindle the lost memories that could have been made during the 2-year absence of the CDC,” they said.

They added that the CDC will not be complete without the drummers, both for old and new fans alike.

“The return of the CDC is a chance for rookies and new viewers to fully experience the cheer spirit with the beat of the drums supporting their own schools and their fellow universities. This event will not be complete without us, the UAAP drummers,” the teams said.

Inclusion to be discussed

In a briefing on Thursday UAAP President Emmanuel Calanog reportedly said that they will look into and discuss the drummer’s joint appeal.

We will discuss this with the board, and decide if we will go back,” Calanog was quoted as saying in the report.

He cited health and safety reasons as the primary considerations for not allowing live drums for the CDC this year.

“Based on our observations these past two months, there are really some spectators that sometimes do not follow rules and take off their masks and everything,” Calanog was quoted as saying.

“Some of these are really health-related when we decided on this,” he added.

A limited number of people were allowed to watch the games on-site last April amid the retention of COVID-19 Alert Level 1 in Metro Manila.

For the CDC 2022, below are the order of teams that will perform on Sunday:

  • Ateneo Blue Eagles
  • NU Pep Squad
  • UP Pep Squad
  • FEU Cheering Squad
  • DLSU Animo Squad
  • Adamson Pep Squad
  • UE Pep Squad
  • UST Salinggawi Dance Troupe