Doce Pares 1st Hall of Fame Inductees and a 3 day International Training Seminar
by Nicole Miller
The first weekend in March, 2008, was a very momentous time for Filipino martial artists all over the world. It marked the first ceremony of the Cacoy Doce Pares Hall of Fame, located in its country of origin, Cebu, Philippines. Hundreds of Doce Pares Eskrimadores turned up from all corners of the world, either to be inducted into the first Hall of Fame, or to partake in the international seminar that surrounded the ceremony in the historical city of Cebu. Grandmasters in the Filipino fighting arts shared their knowledge to eager students who wished to broaden their experience in the field. “The Gathering,” as the event came to be called, had representatives from countries as widespread as Australia, United States, Germany, New Zealand, Mexico, and especially the Philippines. All were present to honor Supreme Grand Master Ciracao “Cacoy” Canete and share in the experience of a lifetime.
This year there was a significant delegation from the United States. Students from Grand Master Anthony Kleeman in Agoura Hills as well as students from Grand Master Bustillo in Torrance, CA and Grand master Jun Cautiverio's students from Northern California were present for the event. There were also some other schools from Ohio, Maryland, Seattle, and other States.
Why Cebu? A bit of background on the city and fighting system
Cebu is an important city to the Filipino culture and the martial arts world. This particular city is a historical landmark for both western worlds as well as the Filipino identity. As well as the birthplace of Catholicism in Asia, Cebu is the location for the historical battle of Mactan, where Magellan was defeated in the shallow waters by chieftain leader, Rajah Lapulapu. This battle is the first recorded use, and proof of the effectiveness, of the Kali fighting system indigenous to the Philippines.
In 1932, the Canete brothers worked together to form the Doce Pares Eskrima Club, based in this historical city, as we know it today. The goal was to perpetuate the practice of eskrima in a commercial setting in order to promote Filipino identity in an increasingly western world. The name Doce Pares translates to twelve pairs and pays tribute to the 24 original founders, as well as the set patterns of twelve strikes and blocks. Now, under the leadership of Cacoy Canete, the only living original Doce Pares member, the Doce Pares Association is responsible for training many of the prominent names in eskrima and arnis around the world and ensuring the survival of the Filipino Martial Arts.
The whole event in March took a period of 4 days, from March 6th to March 9th. The Canete family, especially the Supreme Grand Master, went to great lengths to make the visitors comfortable. The first day, they had arranged for us to discover the wonders and history behind Cebu on a tour bus. We visited sites such as the Basilica del Santo Nino, the Fort San Pedro, and the site where Lapulapu defeated Magellan on Mactan Island. The last of the stops was probably the most moving for us, because it reminded us of the history behind everything we train in today. SGM Cacoy Canete was present for the entire tour showing just how much respect he had for his home.
Learning from the Grand Masters
One of the biggest reasons most of us traveled to Cebu this spring is to have the privilege to learn from some of the best martial artists the world has to offer. With so many different schools present, and so many knowledgeable Masters, there was never a dull moment.
Grand Master Ciriaco “Cacoy” Canete, based in the Doce Pares Headquarters in Cebu, opened the three day long event with various lessons in eskrima. Although 89 years old, his age has never held him back when it comes to demonstrating his techniques. GM Canete participated in most of his seminars, demonstrating various sparring disarms and eskridos on other Grandmasters so we could better understand the motion. He lead the class through a series of single-stick countering drills, flow (or controlled) sparring, disarms and painful locks to hold your challenger at bay. It is always a wonder to see GM Canete make even the most difficult locks look easy, and then casually instruct us “to try.” One will never leave a seminar taught by GM Canete empty handed.
Grand Master Richard Bustillo, who is currently located at the IMB Academy in Torrence, California, took the participants through a series of Jeet Kune Do techniques for his part of the weekend event. As a direct student of Bruce Lee, he is well versed in the style and techniques of Jeet Kune Do, Lee’s personal interpretation of martial arts. For that reason, we were taught a series of hand-trapping and simultaneous reaction strikes that work well with offensive strikes to render an aggressor incapable of continuing the fight. He then used his expertise to demonstrate different self-defense techniques in case of being attacked. We practiced different offensive grabs and defensive escapes from everything to a rear choke, from standing to ground grappling techniques.
Grand Master Vince Palumbo, of Adelaide, Australia, led us through fighting techniques that were more practical for street confrontations instead of the boxing ring. One thing that was brought to our attention was that keeping both hands up by the temples in a fighting stance is not at all effective for a street fight. You need to control the distance while at the same time look defensive instead of aggressive. GM Palumbo applied this theory to pressure points in a convincing demonstration. He talked of pressure points as an equalizer much like the eskrima stick in the hands of an attack victim.
Grand Master Anthony Kleeman, representing Doce Pares Fighting Arts Systems (DPFAS) and Warrior’s Heart Karate of Agoura Hills, California, tied all of the other seminars together very cleanly. He made the participants think about why we use a set pattern of numbers. Those 12 strikes, ranging from the head to the knees, can translate any sort of weapon, weather it be a stick, a knife, or hands. He applied the strikes to boxing techniques, making the weapon the hands and feet instead of a stick. GM Kleeman also built upon GM Bastillo’s quick empty hand attacks by adding his own combinations taking the fighting experience further. He taught a series of blocks and counters to punches that shut down the opponent’s ability to retaliate. He concluded his seminar by demonstrating the usefulness of certain specialty knives, for example the curved blade of the karambit.
Honoring the Fighters
The highlight of the weekend was on Saturday, March 8, when we witnessed the first ceremony of the Doce Pares Hall of Fame. The event was dressed up with a formal banquet and a few spectacular dance acts.
64 eskrimadores were honored to be some of the first fighters to be inducted to the Hall of Fame. Some of the more prominent awards went to Ciriaco “Cacoy” Canete, and posthumous Eulogio “Euling” Canete and Filemon “Mamoy” Canete for being Doce Pares Legends.
The Lifetime Achievement award went to Glen Gardner (Indonesia) and Dan Inosanto (USA). The Most Notable Doce Pares Grand Master was Richard Bustillo (USA). The most notable male competitors were Chuck Canete and John Mac (Philippines), Vince Palumbo (Australia), and Anthony Kleeman (USA). The female competitors were Vicky Simos and Andrea Wheatley (Australia). The students of the year were Dorota Skibinski (Australia) and Dian Tanaka (USA).
The ceremony concluded with a brilliant demonstration of the grace and strength of Doce Pares Eskrima by Master Chuck Canete and Master John Mac. They started their design form by demonstrating the beauty and skill required in forms. They transitioned into a choreographed fight performed with energy and style. Later, on the last day of the seminar Master John Mac taught the seminar participants form necessary to demonstrate the art to its fullest extent.
CDPWF Hall of Fame Inductees 2008
“The Gathering” event that took place in Cebu City, Philippines, was a once in a lifetime opportunity that brought the worldwide martial arts community closer together. Only Supreme Grand Master Ciriaco Cacoy Canete could have brought so many people from all over the globe to his historical home. He honored us by showing off the beautiful city of Cebu that we have learned is so rich in culture and history. We learned a lot about the style of martial arts we practice, especially appreciation of the story behind it and the Masters who have dedicated their lives to its perfection and proliferation.
Written by Nicole Miller
an English & Journalist student at California State University at Northridge
And a senior student of Cacoy Doce Pares Eskrima under GM Anthony Kleeman
Doce Pares Legend -
Ciriaco “Cacoy” Canete (Philippines)
Eulogio “Yoling” Canete (posthumous)
Filemon “Momoy” Canete (posthumous)
Lifetime Acheivment Award -
Martin Gardiner (Australia)
Dan Inosanto (USA)
Most Notable Doce Pares GM of the Year -
Richard Bustillo (USA)
Most Notable Doce Pares Master of the Year -
Ron Lew (USA)
Most Notable Eskrima Competitor of the Year -
Chuck Canete (Philippines)
Ed Eyas (USA)
Anthony Kleeman (USA)
Jon Mac (Philippines)
Vince Palumbo (Australia)
Emery Puskas (USA)
Vicki Simos (Australia)
Andrea Wheatley (Australia)
Excellence in the Promotion of Sport Eskrima -
Glen Gardiner (Indonesia)
Dominic Lavalle (Australia)
Doce Pares School of the Year -
Craig Hayward (Australia)
Organization of the Year -
Anton StJames (England)
Eskrimadore of the Year -
John Moore (Australia)
Carlos Jantsez Patalinghug III (USA)
Law Enforcment Instuctor of the Year -
Uwe Claussen (Germany)
Rob Davis (Australia)
Leigh Jenkins (New Zealand)
Exemplary Dedication to Doce Pares -
David Amiccuni (USA)
Saturnino Arcilla (Philippines)
Narrie Babao (USA)
Mike Castro (USA)
Florencio Cautiverio Jr. (USA)
Wally Estropia (USA)
Manuel Fransisco Jr. (USA)
Steve Hacht (USA)
Lyndon Kemp (Australia)
Guy Kinanahan (USA)
Nonito Limchua (Philippines)
Maris Lukasevics (Australia)
Christopher Naislowski (Australia)
Jan Nycek (Poland)
Ken Pannell (USA)
Carlos Patalinghug Sr. (USA)
Christopher Petrilli (USA)
Angel Postigo (Mexico)
Kevin Seskis (Australia)
Ronnie Tapec (USA)
Most Valuable Master Instructor of the Year -
Carlos Patalinghug Jr. (USA)
Most Valuable Instructor of the Year -
Nestor Feria (USA)
Kevin Lumsden (USA)
Maria Esplana Patalinghug (USA)
Most Valuable Martial Arts Trainer of the Year -
Rudolfo Alvarez (Mexico)
David Lumsden (USA)
Bruce Shinegawa (USA)
Zachary Whitson (USA)
Most Valuable Student of the Year -
Tobias Ricker (Germany)
Steve Sarkisian (USA)
Dorota Skibinski (Australia)
Dian Tanaka (USA)
Outstanding Contribution in the Art of Eskrima/Arnis -
Roland Dantes (Philippines)
Pat Mike (USA)
Juan Zubiri (Philippines)
Most Valuable FMA Journalist of the Year -
Dave Carter (USA)
Steven Dowd (USA)
Aimee Giron (USA)
Chuck Martinez (USA)