Every year, Steps Dance Studio brings cheer to Ayala Malls through a lively Christmas performance. This tradition has dazzled the crowd for many years and has thus become a tradition of mall-goers during the holiday season.

The feel-good project is a collaboration between Steps Dance Studio and Ayala Malls

“This is Ayala Malls’ very first time to be involved in producing a dance film. Normally, Steps Dance Studio would perform live at our malls — each dance having its own unique theme and quirk,” shared Ayala Malls Consumer Engagement Marketing Head Tintin Enriquez-Yabao.

Some notable performances throughout the years are “Pepe’s Secret Christ-mas” (2013); “Frankly Speaking” (2014); and “Halu-Halong Pasko” (2019). This 2020, the performance will take inspiration from happiness.

“This year, because we can't really bring live artists—and artists are actually struggling all over the world—we are going to make a short dance film out of “It’s Gonna Be a Happy Day” song, and I'm very, very excited,” shared Steps Founder Sofia Zobel-Elizalde.

The dance film

Titled “Happy,” the dance film begins with a mall maintenance staff falling asleep on a chair in an empty cinema. Next thing he knows, he’s surrounded by Ayala Malls’ lush greenery. He moves to the beat of his passionate heart and is joined by a group of other young jazz dancers who also glide, dart, stretch, jump, bend, and rise to the wonderful spirit of Christmas.

The maintenance staff soon wakes up from his dream — a dream that not only enlivened his senses, but have also instilled glimmers.

The song accompanying the dance film is Maestro Ryan Cayabyab’s original composition called “It’s Gonna Be a Happy Day.” Performed by local artist Reese Lansangan, the bouncy, feel good track highlights Ayala Malls’ Christ-mas message.

“Happy” dance film was born as a collaborative effort among the country’s most successful creatives. Complementing Maestro Ryan Cayabyab and Reese Lansangan’s musical production, director Madge Reyes, choreographer James Laforteza, Tarzeer Pictures, official photographer Sandra Zobel, and dancers from Steps Dance Project and Likha PH add color to “It’s Gonna Be a Happy Day.”

“I wanted to bring out the joy of Christmas through the precise and thoughtful movements of the dancers — all while highlighting the many amenities of Aya-la Malls, which I’m sure many of us miss. We went to two different venues, Greenbelt and Circuit, to really make the most out of the video,” shared Asian Cultural Council Award recipient and Founder of Fifth Wall Festival, Director Madge Reyes.

“I choreographed big, lively movements that contrast the restricting feelings we all somewhat felt because of the many months of quarantine due to the pan-demic,” added Steps Head Choreographer and Resident Teacher, James Lafor-teza.

The message

“Happy” by Steps Dance Studio and Ayala Malls was created to bring joy to dancers and mallgoers. Nowadays, many people are losing joy because of the effects of the coronavirus (Covid-19) pandemic. Nevertheless, the ability to choose happiness and to spread the message of hope cannot be extinguished despite the apparent limitations. In fact, happiness and hope have no known limit when it is rooted in the very heart of Christmas: love.

Only then can one say, “The show must go on!” — because it is this forbearing and enduring love that motivates the soul to choose happiness and live happy days despite the current struggles.

“Happy” dance film is now available on Ayala Malls’ official Facebook page.