THE famed CPDRC dancing inmates are now gearing up for the return of public viewings after a two-year break due to the coronavirus disease pandemic.

The inmates performed at the Cebu Provincial Detention and Rehabilitation Center (CPDRC) in Barangay Kalunasan, Cebu City on Saturday, Feb. 11, 2023 for a special viewing organized by the Cebu Provincial Tourism Office (CPTO) as part of the steps in relaunching the paid public viewings of the group.

According to the CPTO’s Arnela Tangkay, the special viewing that started on Saturday is set to continue for the whole month as part of the evaluation and improvement of their performances.

“We will have our special viewing for a month. We will be deciding, the decision coming from the governor if ever unsay feedback niya, unsay madungog niya, since makita niya ang mga videos, she will be the one to decide na pwede na mag open to the public,” Tangkay said.

(From feedback she gets, since she can see the videos, Gov. Gwendolyn Garcia will decide if we can already open to the public.)

The tourism office cannot provide the specific dates and ticket prices yet for the public shows.

The future proceeds of the ticket sales for the dancers’ performances will be settled and sent to the dancers’ personal bank accounts that they were provided for individually, Tangkay added.

Psy and BTS

The dancing inmates showcased new choreography for the spectators. Included in their dance lineup was “That, That,” a fun, groovy song by PSY and global superstar Suga of BTS released in April of 2022.

Their YouTube video of “Thriller” by Michael Jackson made global headlines in 2007. A Netflix documentary titled “Happy Jail” was also released in 2019, where the story of an ex-convict turned manager of the CPDRC was featured.

The dancing routines started as a non-punitive form of rehabilitation for the persons deprived of liberty inside the CPDRC in 2006 and then went on to gain traction for their coordinated formations and entertaining moves.

Some 800 dancing inmates gave a special performance on Aug. 12, 2022 for Governor Garcia and other high-ranking government officials in Central Visayas as part of the monthlong 453rd founding anniversary celebration of the Cebu Provincial Government.