The Maria Clara Suite captures the elegance and charm of the mestiza Filipina as well as the gallantry and boldness of the mestizo Filipino. Courtship, love, and flirtation are all evident in this suite of romantic dances.
La Estudiantina ("a female student" in Spanish) characterizes the young women who studied at home during the Spanish influence. This dance is performed by women carrying a book, or sometimes a fan, as an item associated with female students.
Habanera Botolena is commonly known as the Wedding dance,( also performed at other big events like baptisms) it combines Spanish and Filipino movement and culture throughout the dance. It is often performed by the bride, groom and their wedding court (bridesmaids & groomsmen). This dance often symbolizes the love, happiness that the bride and groom share with everyone in their life.
Mariposa ("butterfly" in Spanish) is a partner dance that shows pollination and symbolizes the courting process. The males represent butterflies, and the females represent flowers. The butterfly flies from flower to flower, and learns a fidelity lesson with his favorite flower.
Aray is an energetic Filipino jota originating in Manila and typically sung in old Ermiteño dialect. It is a flirtatious dance, which is emphasized through the women's use of tambourines, fans, and shawls. In Tagalog, "aray" means "ouch," the name most likely derived from the dancers' demanding footwork.
Cariñosa ("loving" or "affectionate" in Spanish) is a partner dance where the fan and handkerchief play an important role in the couple's romantic scene. It expresses the shyness and modesty of a Filipina. The dance can be noted as the next national dance of the Philippines after Tinikling.
Imunan, meaning jealousy, is a Pangasinan courtship dance featuring a love triangle between a man and two women. The man attempts to please both women while the women try to individually win his favor. In the end, once the man declares his love for one of the two women, there is finally harmony between the three dancers.
This is a dance originating in Leyte, a Visayan province, that represents the first moments of attraction between couples. This dance is a partner dance that portrays females who would lace their handkerchiefs with camphor oil to induce romance in their partners.