Architects At Play was proud to be a Platinum Sponsor for Folklorama's Pearl of the Orient Philippine Pavilion for the second year in a row. This year, we teamed up with State Craft Architectural Fabricators and Parkwest Projects to build new props for the Pavilion's production group, Magdaragat Philippines Inc This included new swords, daggers, spears, and axes for the group's Cordillera, Muslim, and Lapu Lapu dance suites.
The project began with a research phase where images showing the actual cultural artifacts were gathered. These images were used to produce the drawing file that would be used to cut the steel for the props. State Craft used water jet technology to cut the props out of a 1/8" steel sheet. This was one of the most efficient methods for producing the props, since water jet technology is a relatively quick way of cutting the complex shapes.
After the shapes were cut, we ground the edges by hand because the metal was extremely sharp. Due to the complex shapes of the props, each item took 15 to 20 minutes to create a safe edge for handling. Any overly sharp points were also rounded off for safety.
Once the steel was ground, handles were roughly cut out of 3/8" wood. The shapes were derived from the handles found on the actual weapons. The handles were attached to the blades using a minimum of three 1/4" wood dowels. This, combined with the use of a hockey tape wrap, created very strong and safe connections between the handles and the blades.
The wood handles were then sanded to take on the final traditional and ergonomic shapes.
The Pearl of the Orient Philippine Pavilion platinum sponsorship package included advertising space in the Pavilion's souvenir program, verbal recognition and slideshow placement before each show, and VIP entrance (including cultural food and beverages). For our VIP show, we invited Jayson and Joy from Robot Age Media and Jed and Jessica from Avairos Group to join us. The show featured a number of the props we had built for the group and included a performance from our very own Joseph, where he performed some Filipino Martial Arts.
We would like to thank the Pearl of the Orient Philippine Pavilion for their hospitality and for the fantastic show. We would like to especially thank the Pavilion's Coordinators, Emiliano Galera and Sheila Pelagio, for organizing our VIP experience. Lastly, we would like to extend our gratitude to State Craft Architectural Fabricators and Parkwest Projects for helping to complete this ambitious project.