Thank You, 2012

I don’t really write detailed year-end entries because most of the time, the year goes by so fast for me, it’s a blur. But 2012 deserves to be written about. So many things happened this year that I am so grateful for, I met so many people who ended up influencing and inspiring me so much, so many doors of opportunity opened up for me this year that I never knew I’d get the chance to step through.

And so here it is, my year not only in review, but my 2012 in thanksgiving.




JANUARY. 2012 started off with UPeepz (my dance barkada) joining SHOWTIME. I never thought we’d join that noontime show, but that has got to be one of the best experiences I’ve had with UPz. For our first competition for 2012, we became the first grand finalist! Even though we didn’t win the 1.5M Php, the experience was — cliché as it sounds — priceless.



401531_10150513083957157_378682187_nI joined my very first battle that month and made it to Top 8! I just started to get into freestyle and battling was one of my greatest dance fears. I wasn’t that confident yet with my dance vocab, but unexpectedly joining that battle was definitely a turning point in my dance life. (“Unexpectedly” because I was only planning to watch, but Dani registered me as a battler. Hahaha.)





FEBRUARY = birthday month! First time to celebrate my birthday in Fiamma… Actually, first time ever to celebrate my birthday in a club. HAHAHA. I loved that I celebrated my birthday amongst dancers. When you’re at a party full of dancers, it’s never boring.

395754_10150509417437251_1010300995_nPerformed for the first time as part of Tha Project during UPM Indayog’s concert, “Sayaw Manila: Happily Evil After”, woop!

Gathered people and held a jam at BHS Central before they allowed street performers. We were approached by security and they were kicking us out! Luckily, an Australian family had been watching us dance and loved what we were doing (their son, most especially). The wife talked to security and defended our group. We were left alone to dance and just enjoy the vibe after.



324256_3054723039874_2104069107_oAfter my first pre-selections and battle in January, I was hungry for more experience. It’s true that once you battle for the first time, you’re gonna keep looking for it. So I joined the pre-selections for Dance to the Music: STEEZ Battle. Although I didn’t make the cut on both tries, I knew I grew as a dancer.

422420_3348257591101_419157930_nUPeepz got invited for the first time to perform in the university, yay.


425327_395026273846121_353991505_nNow here’s some acad stuff. Joined the Microsoft Start App: After Dark coding marathon with my thesis lab mates. Basically we conceptualized and developed a “fun” Windows 8 application within 24 hours. “Fun” was the category we were assigned to. The application we developed, “Square Sanity”, is available in the Windows Store!

457590_2911820355829_363593055_oMARCH marked even more new experiences and growth for me. After years of being scared of a skateboard (highschool trauma, haha), I got pushed to try riding a longboard by Phill. Not only did he push me in terms of conquering my skateboard fear, he also pushed me to get out of my comfort zone when it comes to dance. I learned so much and still, I thirsted for more. I had been turned into a sponge.





That being said, I joined battle after battle. I finally experienced the ‘free’ in freestyle. IMPULSE has got to be one of the most memorable battles I joined. I got to go against Trischa who is 10-11 years my junior. It was a tight battle, our friends said. I was happy to have experienced such a thing.













APRIL. Summer! First time to go to Boracay with friends. The last time I was in Boracay, it wasn’t the “party beach” that we have right now. It was awesome that I spent those days with my UPeepz family!





MAY. Volunteered to help out stage Manila’s first-ever music festival. Roz and I went all over Makati to put up posters! On the festival day itself, I ended up being the artists’ liaison. Worked ’til 10 in the evening, wasn’t really able to “enjoy” the festival because of duty. But just when I thought I should just settle for being able to hear the wonderful artists play their music, I was able to actually share the stage with Afrika Bambaataa himself! I danced with my fellow dancers and Mama Lema (Philippine All-Stars) even encouraged us ladies to do solos! If that weren’t enough, I actually had this “moment” with Afrika during my solo. The first track he was playing was kinda upbeat, so I was dancing to that, but he switched it up and turned it kinda slow. I was momentarily disoriented because of the sudden change, so I looked at him like “whuuuut, wokaaay…”. He looked back at me with a “yeeee girl, I gotchu.” HAHAHA! True story. I got witnesses.

389186_365396553508589_146503010_nTha Project’s first movie out! Prince surprised all of us when he showed us tickets to watch 21 Jump Street. We were at BP, waiting for everyone before we started our regular training, when Prince said that he just got news from one of the venues we were trying to get for our fundraising concert, holding up a piece of printed paper. He had that serious face so we all thought it was going to be a serious meeting before we got on with training. With a sigh, he said, “We’re all stressed, so we deserve to go to the movies tonight.” Then he showed that the piece of paper he was holding up wasn’t an email response from one of the venues (like he originally made us believe), but ticket reservations! We were stunned and then we started jumping up and down (no, seriously) and shouting out of excitement. We needed that break so bad and Prince (and Ate Madz) had such perfect timing. One of the best, simple experiences I’ve had with TP.



My cousin got married this year. Man, I still can’t believe that he’s already married. It really feels like it was just yesterday when he’d trick me into eating dirt.



Training for the World Hip Hop Championship ’12 with Tha Project was intense. “Hunger Games” training. We also held dance battles to raise funds. The turnout was great! It was really good to see new faces in the community!

522481_3358043671133_891607302_nStarred in my very first dance video c/o Chips Beltran. “Work Hard, Play Hard”.






JULY was TP month, in preparation for “Worls”.


… I still got to battle as an individual tho!488203_3578662026454_1427360820_n



AUGUST. “Worls” happened. TP made it to the semis! For a newcomer team, we were beyond grateful. (Yup, that’s Ryan Higa. And that’s me, two seats away.)



MOTHERBASSS-3001Tagging along with James and Deej to meet MOTHERBASSS was definitely the turning point for 2012. I got to meet Nix and Macky, who didn’t mind a stranger taking pictures of them while they jammed (haha). When I wrote about them and posted the pics I took, I was honestly surprised that they really liked it! This made me consider to actually continue taking pictures and posting them on this blog. I wasn’t much of a blogger (I still don’t really think I am), but I’ve been taking photos since high school. It was only this year that I had the guts to publish my work. Thank you, Deej, James, Nix, and Macky! You guys made that big of an impact.

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Breathe and Stop-4135Adidas All Originals: Breathe and Stop Manila Leg. Maseo. Ali Shaheed Muhammad. Shortkut. That night was one for the books!

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SEPTEMBER was a packed month. Show & Tell, THE Clothing’s 3rd Anniversary, WIP Caps’ Corruption 2 release x Creative Recreation x COMPLEX, Progress QC store opening, and Bloom Arts Festival. Met SO MANY people in just that one month! Crazy, in the best way.


Experienced Battalia Royale 3, a different kind of theater production. Made me remember my own theater days, hahaha. Wanted to go back to theater because of this play! It was sick, at times really funny, but mostly sick and twisted. Loved the experience! And to cap off the night, Radioactive Sago Project did an after-play performance! (They played the live score of the production.)



OCTOBER. Definitely the highlight of October has to be the Hennessy Artistry Philippines 2012 gig. Got to help cover a huge event. Big thanks to Geoff Gonzales a.k.a. Out of Scratch!

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Attended Sassa’s fashion show during Philippine Fashion Week. It was my first time to attend a fashion show and my first time to dress up for it, lol. I felt so girly. Tried to take some fashion photos for the first time, too!



Check out my awkward fashion pose! This is why I belong BEHIND the camera, lol.



6206_3887557188640_1927840201_nFirst time to actually think of a decent costume for halloween! Went as Ramona Flowers to the “Blood on the Dance Floor” costume dance battle (hosted by TP!) and to the FCKMEIMFAMOUS halloween rager. I had to much fun at the not-so-secret secret party! Can’t wait for another one like it!

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Did some BTS work while James took photos of Out of Scratch… In other words, I tagged along. Hahaha. Memorable day that day was. Got to talk to Geoff about my career plans and how I should keep on doing what I love to do. It was a very inspiring talk over burgers and fries. One advice that I’ll never forget is that I should always ask questions. “It’ll help you and it’ll help keep them humble.” Wise words.

NOVEMBER. I remember James asking me at the last minute if I could do some video editing of some BTS footage of Archie (CHICHImonster) making beautiful art on Big Bad Wolf’s wall using pictures by Kevin Cayuca and Adrian Gonzales (who just happens to be a good ol’ friend of mine in college!). I took on the challenge and edited away. The video was shown at Show & Tell and they all loved it! My heart was full.

18244_3924232025488_203310223_nWent to Punta Fuego for the first time ever with Barry, James, and Deej to do wedding photography. That was when “That One Crew” was born. Why the name? Barry told us about the time he had a crew named, “Those Guys”. Whenever people would ask who took the photos or who shot the videos, “Oh, Those Guys.” Get it? Hahaha. So this time, if people would ask who did their wedding photography, “That One Crew.” (“Who?” “That One Crew!” “I mean, what’s the name of the group?” “… That One Crew!”)





After 3 years, I got to step on the Skechers stage again. Not as a competitor, but as a guest performer! The teams who represented the Philippines during the World Hip Hop Championship ’12 were the opening act for the Skechers Streetdance Battle Year 8.

The first Electronica festival in the Philippines held in Tagaytay, the Tagaytay Electronica Festival (TEF) 2012. Rushed on over right after the Skechers gig. That night was so fucking crazy. Everything was really just a blur! Loved the vibe that night, not to mention the music! I drowned in all its goodness! One of the best nights I’ve ever had, hands down. Wish it could happen all over again.

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Laced Up-1896

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Laced Up-2108Thanks to CLAVEL Magazine, I scored a free pass to the Adidas LACED UP event! Compared to Breathe and Stop, it was a much more “intimate” affair because the venue was smaller (although TIME did have 3 floors…). Still got to take pictures of my dancer friends!



46238_10151106156711179_1226332270_nI missed the first Platform Show last March — wasn’t planning to miss the next one. So even though I had a gig with TP that same day, I made sure to swing by Ronac to take pictures! I wanted to stay longer (especially since MOTHERBASSS was gonna play), but I couldn’t. I wanted to buy so many things, lol. One thing that caught my eye was Flying Dutchman’s Rucksack!!! I really liked the green one, huhuhu. Oh well, at least I know what I wanna save up for.


Up Dharma Down’s album launch. Commuted as fast as I could to catch the Capacities launch: Tandang Sora to One Esplanade! Whew! Thanks to Camus, he got me in through the backdoor and I ended up staying in the media pit. Heartbreak: I did not have my camera with me. Huhuhu.




DECEMBER was UPeepz’ month. We defended our title as RX Champions! Stressful month it was because we had to manage our time for RX training AAAAND for concert rehearsals. Last year, I wore a black bandana. We won. This year, I wore that same bandana. We defended the title. I guess I finally have a lucky something!






10024_4773401327471_1955610609_nREVEALED. We revealed our hearts onstage. I am so proud of us. A lot of effort was put into this concert — our first concert. We did everything by ourselves! I am especially proud of the Creatives Committee (BEST COMMITTEE!!! Hahaha). From the teasers to the profile pictures to the promotional material to the tickets (INVISIBLE INK FTW)… GAAAAH! Joy tears. It was also during this concert that I choreographed my very first piece! It may not have been the cleanest piece ever, but I was told that those who watched us dance felt the emotion/s I wanted them to feel. And because of that, I am happy and proud.


IMG_3209And before 2012 ends, I tried something different and went to an event I had no knowledge about. I went to the KPop Convention 4 for my cousin who won and would be part of the opening act for this KPop concert early next year! I’m not yet done editing pictures but do expect a separate entry for it soon!

Last night was the BP Fam Bam’s (late) Christmas party. Still haven’t edited the pictures, so this GIF should do! It was so much fun! It’s the second BP Fam Christmas party I’ve gone to. I’m really happy to be part of this family. BP is my home away from home. Separate entry for this one, fosho!

While making this entry (took me almost 4 hours!), I realized that 2012 was full of “firsts”. I’m happy and thankful for everything I got the chance to do, for everyone I was blessed enough to meet, and for all the places I have been able to go to.

I take everything from 2012 — the good and the bad — and keep them as a reminder that although good things may come to those who wait, GREAT things happen for those who hustle. I’ve seen the many doors of opportunity crack open ever since I started to do what I love to do and put myself out there. Makes me wonder why I didn’t do that sooner! Hahaha. Then I remembered the reason: I was scared of my own work. And now that 2012 is coming to an end, I realize that I should not be scared of greatness. I should not be scared of my very own potential. Of all people, I should believe in my own work.

To everyone I’ve met this year, to everyone I got to work with, I am blessed. You all have influenced me and inspired me greatly. You’ve made an impact. My understanding of music, culture, dance, relationships, and whatnot has deepened because of all of you. Thank you!

Thank you, 2012.

What’s good, 2013?


5 responses to “Thank You, 2012

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