Friday, February 1, 2008


special topics: Barrio Fiesta/ Performing Arts
YPSP 0182-390-01

Welcome to the course blog for Barrio Fiesta at USF! This class allows students to learn the theory underlying Pilipino Cultural Nights (PCNs). PCNs are widespread productions, consisting of skit and (folk) dances, put on by schools’ Filipino Clubs. This semester USF’s Kasamahan will be hosting their 35th annual PCN, better known on campus as “Barrio Fiesta.” Although participation in PCN is separate from the class, students will be given the opportunity to learn the history, purpose, and system behind PCN, and to produce their own event this spring.

Learning Objectives
Students will 1) learn the history, technique, and meaning of the different Filipino folk dance suites, 2) learn common themes, techniques of performance, and background of Filipinos in performing arts, 3) understand the complex planning system behind barrio, 4) explore differences amongst various PCNs, and 5) contribute to a richer critical dialogue on Filipinos in the performing arts.

Required Reading
All students enrolled in Barrio Fiesta are required to read, discuss and write about assigned texts from time to time, regardless of how many units you are enrolled with. You will be provided with photocopies or pdfs for these occasional readings.

All 4 Unit students are required to purchase the book “Stage Presence: Conversations with Filipino American Performing Artists”, edited by Theo Gonzalves. You will need to acquire this book immediately: please have it by Thursday, February 7. (You are all welcome/encouraged to read it, regardless of your units, of course!)

We can place a discount bulk order together, or you may order it directly via Lulu at
Arkipelago Books here in SF has a few copies remaining:

Methods of Evaluation:
Grading is as follows, with further clarification under Course Expectations:
Participation/Attendance 40%
Written Work 30%
Midterm Assessment 20%
Barrio Attendance 10%

Course Expectations:

Participation and Attendance
Your ability to collaborate, contribute to class discussion, and to class activities is critical. In order to achieve this, please be on time, and prepared.
Please come to class prepared with all appropriate materials, textbook, handouts, and completed assignments. You are expected to participate actively in class.

Coming to class ON TIME is mandatory. Four (4) absences lowers your final grade (e.g. An A becomes a B). Two late arrivals constitutes an absence. You are responsible for any lessons or assignments that you miss due to absence/lateness. Please refer to Blackboard Announcements for updates on all lessons, homework and due dates. Excessive tardiness and absences will result in your being dropped from the course.

We will use a variety of available technology in-class as well as for homeworkinteractions including videos, DVDs, internet resources, and Powerpoint. You’re expected to check your email and the course websites (Blackboard, Blogger) to stay up to date with expectations, assignments and grades. Please refer regularly to Blackboard, as well as to our public course blog right here. You are expected to contribute periodic posts and written responses to either/both forums.

All homework and writing exercises must be submitted on time. Late assignments will take deductions of 10 percent per day late. Late work will not be accepted after one week. Being prepared for your specific Barrio responsibilities (be it set design, skit, dance, promotions) is imperative.

Cellular Phones and Pagers
Cellular phones, micro data transmitters (Sidekick II, Blackberry) and pagers must be turned off during class hours. Under absolutely no circumstances are they to be used in class. Laptops are not out unless explicitly needed for the activity at hand.

Extra Credit
There is a limited amount of extra credit available, depending on your circumstances (ie, legit absences may be compensated for, general flakiness will not). As the semester progresses, you may want to meet with Wofford to discuss other Kasamahan committees and activities during the semester which will provide you with opportunities to:
(a) make up points for missing Filipino-American Community Service Lab activities
(b) to earn extra credits beyond what is required of Kasamahan.

If you have any questions, concerns or problems pertaining to the course, please double-check Blackboard for clarification first. If it’s not helpful, don’t hesitate to email Wofford and/or set an appointment for Tues/Thursday office hours. Your Teaching Assistants may also be able to assist with clarifications, lessons and minor administrative issues.

Let's make this semester, and USF's 35th annual Barrio, an amazing experience!