Cebu governor brings back ‘dancing inmates’ show | Inquirer News
Close  
EXTRA INCOME FOR PRISONERS

Cebu governor brings back ‘dancing inmates’ show

/ 04:45 AM July 13, 2022
Inmates at Cebu Provincial Detention and Rehabilitation Center perform a dance routine at the jail quadrangle in this 2019 photo. Cebu’s “dancing inmates” have attracted tourists after their first performance video, uploaded on YouTube in 2007, gained millions of viewers. STORY: Cebu governor brings back ‘dancing inmates’ show

PERFORMANCE LEVEL | Inmates at Cebu Provincial Detention and Rehabilitation Center perform a dance routine at the jail quadrangle in this 2019 photo. Cebu’s “dancing inmates” attracted tourists after their first performance video, uploaded on YouTube in 2007, gained millions of viewers. (Photo by NESTLE SEMILLA / Inquirer Visayas)

CEBU CITY, Cebu, Philippines — Cebu Gov. Gwendolyn Garcia is bringing back the “dancing inmates” of Cebu Provincial Detention and Rehabilitation Center (CPDRC) to attract tourists and hopefully bring income to prisoners whose dance routines posted on YouTube became viral several years ago.

Garcia said she would also reopen the savings account for CPDRC inmates at Cooperative Bank of Cebu. Each inmate, she said, would be given a savings account passbook.

ADVERTISEMENT

When she was governor of Cebu from 2004 to 2013, Garcia introduced livelihood programs at CPDRC to help inmates earn so they could use their savings once they were released from the provincial jail.

“The inmates, for one, have a community store. Whatever they earn will be divided so all of them will have an income,” she said.

FEATURED STORIES

CPDRC became popular because of its dancing inmates, who became a viral hit on the internet when their choreographed dance of Michael Jackson’s music video “Thriller” was posted on YouTube in 2007 by then prison consultant Byron Garcia, the governor’s brother.

The original post has so far earned more than 59.5 million views.

Fitness, rehab

The detainees performed dance routines as part of their daily physical fitness program and rehabilitation, and many of their performances were filmed and released online, which attracted local and international audiences.

In 2010, the public viewing of the dancing inmates was suspended as the provincial government conducted an investigation into the donations and contributions allegedly received by the group.

This time, Governor Garcia said the provincial government had entered into an agreement with dancesport choreographer Edward Jayco to train the CPDRC inmates.

CPDRC, which has a capacity of 1,500 to 1,600 inmates, currently has around 900 inmates, way lower than the 4,000 jail population in the past years.

Since the provincial jail has been decongested, Garcia said they were now ready to accept inmates from Cebu’s municipal jails.

ADVERTISEMENT

—REPORTS FROM ADOR VINCENT MAYOL AND DALE ISRAEL

RELATED STORIES

‘Cebu dancing inmates a tourist attraction’

Cebu’s dancing inmates inspire New York musical

Jail that produced dancing inmates to produce boxers, too

Read Next
Don't miss out on the latest news and information.

Subscribe to INQUIRER PLUS to get access to The Philippine Daily Inquirer & other 70+ titles, share up to 5 gadgets, listen to the news, download as early as 4am & share articles on social media. Call 896 6000.

TAGS: Cebu dancing inmates, Cooperative Bank of Cebu, Gwendolyn Garcia
For feedback, complaints, or inquiries, contact us.

News that matters

By providing an email address. I agree to the Terms of Use and
acknowledge that I have read the Privacy Policy.



© Copyright 1997-2022 INQUIRER.net | All Rights Reserved

We use cookies to ensure you get the best experience on our website. By continuing, you are agreeing to our use of cookies. To find out more, please click this link.