Teacher Nonoy, bringing ballet to the North

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Trying to bring ballet closer to children and at the same time wanting for a better appreciation from the general public, Edwin Vicente, better known to little ballerinas as teacher “Nonoy”, staged “Rhythm of Hearts” Ballet Concert at SM Baguio last March 12, 2017.

The cheerful figure of teacher Nonoy is an encouragement that makes children from different ages shine in their colorful tutu skirts while dancing in the tune of classical ballet.

The 55-year-old ballet instructor started his ballet career in 1995 and until now teaches ballet to students in different public and private schools.

He is a former member of Association of Ballet Academies of the Philippines. “Ida Beltran Lucila introduced me to ABAP. From there, Vella C. Damian introduced me to the world of great meaning–ballet–and was trained in Australian Conservatoire of Ballet system of training, a program devised by Christine Walsh AM,” said Vicente.

In 2013, he became an affiliate member of Australian Teachers of Dancing. “I am proud to be the first Muslim Filipino Affiliate Member of ATOD,” he said.

Aside from these feats, Vicente considers her two daughters as his greatest achievement, “My daughters are my living proofs that I am a good teacher.” His eldest daughter, Edle Joy, 18, received the highest mark in the Philippine entry in International Ballet Exam held in Hong Kong on April 9, 2016, finishing with honours with distinction mark. She also ranked 8th place in the National Ballet Competition held in Meralco Theater last 2015.

His youngest daughter, 15-year-old Amerah Claire, also finished with the second highest mark which is Honours Plus in ATOD International Ballet Examination held in Singapore on November 17, 2016.

At present, Vicente and his ballerina daughters manage their own business, Tiptoe Ballet Coaching, a tutorial on-call for ballet, contemporary and jazz dances that begun offering services since March 4, 2017. Vicente manages the business while his two daughters help in teaching the dances. Tiptoe Ballet Coaching has two scheduled session at Body Rules Fitness Center in San Fernando City, La Union with mobile number 09275077983.

Vicente said he keeps on teaching ballet “to uplift the culture of Ilocanos” and at the same time to give opportunity for children who have great skills to be recognized and for them to appreciate classical ballet, which, for him, is “the highest form of art.”
As for the fuel that drives his passion for teaching ballet, “I had proven to myself na marunong ako magturo, di man kasing galing ng iba, marunong ako. (I had proven to myself that I am good at teaching, maybe not as great as others, but I am good).” He also said it is because he saw that his daughters have a future in ballet.

This, aside from his observation that “Walang nagtuturo ng ballet sa La Union (No one teaches ballet in La Union).”
Vicente said, “Ballet is a theatrical art, where you communicate through movements and portray different roles, ballet is like telling a story” – and this is his story. Jessalyn Soreno, UB Intern / ABN